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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful.
When Bad News = Good News
By Howard M. Kindel
The bad news is these shows are from the 1990's (I know: a mini-eon ago). The good news is these shows are from the 1990's: they may not be the most up-to-date shows in The History Channel's repertoire but you can get them at a cut-rate price - and they're worth every penny, even if you've seen them all. In fact I hadn't seen them, except maybe the one about Machu Picchu, which is primarily why I bought this DVD. But, to my surprise, the seven I hadn't seen were almost better than Machu Picchu.
The most intriguing is "The Forbidden City: Dynasty and Destiny." Besides giving a history of the Dynasties ruling China from The Forbidden City, the show details its size and architecture: not just a palace complex in the heart of Beijing, it really is an entire city within a city. There's a haunting, otherworldly aura to "The Search For Shangri-La" - as you might expect since this seems to be a mythical place. But the Buddhist monks believe it really exists, somewhere in the Tibetan Himalayas. "Ancient Rome And Its Mysterious Cities" is far more interesting than you might expect; it makes it clear that, however much you've seen and read about Rome, there's still a lot you may not know.
Two other shows - "Pompeii: Buried Alive" and "The Sunken City" relate as well to the Roman Empire. The Pompeii show, as with the one about Rome, includes a great deal more historical data about the city itself and its inhabitants than is generally given. "The Sunken City" is about Rome's port of Ostia, which did not, as the name of the show suggests, sink into the sea or even into the ground. Rather it was swallowed up in time, almost completely forgotten and overgrown after the early Middle Ages; and only began to be excavated within the past hundred years. Unlike Ostia, however, the "Lost City of Pirates" did indeed sink into the sea. This was Port Royal in Jamaica, during the pirate era one of the largest and wealthiest cities of the new world, essentially a British city perfectly capturing Britain's love/hate relationship with the Caribbean pirates. Port Royal succumbed to an earthquake and tidal wave which all but destroyed it.
"The Odyssey of Troy" seems to have been the earliest entry in this series - and almost earned the series three stars. For the sound track. It wasn't bad but it was so loud it nearly drowned out the narration, and did drown out some of the experts. The producers more or less fixed this problem in subsequent shows, partly by changing narrators, partly by lowering the volume; but even so the sound track never quite blended in perfectly with the presentation. It's only because the rest of the production was so excellent that I gave it five instead of four stars.
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By elizabeth byrd
love those ancient mysteries mostly those ancient stories
0 of 0 people found the following review helpful. See all 28 customer reviews...
I haven't watched it yet but it looks great so thanks.