A comprehensive survey of the history of World War I.
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World War 1 in Colour (TV Mini-Series 2003)
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Documentary using computer colorized footage from World War I to give the audience the feel of how it really looked back during the war.

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The Great War (TV Mini-Series 1964)
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One of the greatest achievements of television -broadcast from 1964 in 26 episodes. Use of extensive archive footage and sound effects, linked with contemporary classic music of that area. ... See full summary »

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The Second World War in Colour (TV Mini-Series 1999)
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Apocalypse: World War I (TV Mini-Series 2014)
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Colorized historical footage in ascending order of World War 1. Not only the relatively known Flanders and France battles, but also the generally unknown Italian-Austrian, ... See full summary »

Stars: François Arnaud, Mathieu Kassovitz, Ferdinand Foch
Third Reich: The Rise & Fall (TV Series 2010)
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THIRD REICH: THE RISE & FALL tells the story of Hitler's Germany through rarely seen films of the people who were there. Immersive and evocative, it takes viewers inside the Germany of the ... See full summary »

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Apocalypse: The Second World War(2009) is a six-part French documentary about the Second World War. The documentary is composed exclusively of actual footage of the war as filmed by war ... See full summary »

Stars: Mathieu Kassovitz, Martin Sheen
World War II in Colour (TV Series 2009)
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Recounts the events of world War II in color.

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War of the Century (TV Mini-Series 1999)
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Documentary examining Operation Barbarossa, Hitler's invasion of the Soviet Union in 1941.

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WWII in HD (TV Mini-Series 2009)
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Follow the lives of soldiers who lived World War II, through previously unseen color footage.

Stars: Gary Sinise, Charles Scheffel, Justin Bartha
Apocalypse - Hitler (TV Mini-Series 2011)
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Chronicles Hitler's life as a failed painter and far-right activist up to his election as Chancellor of Germany, leading to his relentless rise to power, culminating in the beginning of World War II.

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Cold War (TV Mini-Series 1998)
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A 24-part series which deals with the relations between the United States, the Soviet Union and their respective allies between the end of World War II to the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991.

Stars: Kenneth Branagh, Anatoli Dobrynin, Robert McNamara
Apocalypse: Staline (TV Mini-Series 2015)
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The rise of Stalin, from his early beginning as a bankrobber to the cold-blooded leader of the Soviet Union.

Stars: Mathieu Kassovitz, Doug Rand
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Jonathan Lewis ...
 Narrator (10 episodes, 2003)
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In 1914, decades of building European resentments and rivalries finally exploded into a massive total war that became much larger and bloodier for far longer than anyone could have imagined. This series endeavors to tell the full story of World War I, which was far more than just the trenches and includes war on the high seas and furthest flung regions of the world. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (kchishol@rogers.com)

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2003 (USA)  »

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Pierwsza wojna swiatowa  »

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Exhaustive but biased documentary disappoints despite high promise
25 February 2008 | by (Jersey City, United States) – See all my reviews

I was eagerly looking forward to this ten episode, four DVD set (8 hours and 23 minutes in all) based on the claims on the box of previously unseen film footage and newly accessible archival material from Central and Eastern European sources and most especially the ties to a book by a "professor" (presumably of history - Hew Strachan). Unfortunately, as assembled (in an initially promising chronological format) by BBC 4, there is little or no pretense of objective history and far too many omissions and distortions in the service of a strictly British viewpoint. The over all effect, despite copious quotations from participants on all sides, is like a history of World War II's "D-Day" told entirely from Field Marshall Montgomery's aide de camp's viewpoint.

The vast majority of film footage (mostly acknowledged - but not some of the obvious naval model work; possibly from faked "newsreels"?) is from 1920's and 30's film reconstructions and fictionalizations mixed with color footage of locales as they look today. While there is interesting period movie footage, it is almost all behind the lines and of close-up non-action scenes and TV cameras scanning across still photos.

One of the single most desired sequences, the final newsreel footage of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand leaving the Serajevo City Hall moments before his assassination, is only shown in the abbreviated and already much circulated cut. The reasons for Franz Ferdinand - a fascinating, complex figure given very short shrift here (and his Sophie) being in Bosnia that day (their 14th Wedding Anniversary) are totally omitted - as are any understanding of his reigning Uncle, Emperor Franz Joseph at the head of a great multi-cultural empire or the reasons the majority of Moslem Bosnia was opposed to Eastern Orthodox Serbian pretensions over their territory since both broke away from the shrinking Ottoman Empire.

Once the war itself started (you will be hard pressed to understand why from the sketchy story told here), the British documentary almost entirely ignores the original combatants but focuses on the British and their conflict with Austria's unsubtle allies in Germany.

Because of the British confrontations (to their considerable discomfort) with the Ottoman Turk, much time is spent on this front, allowing at least rudimentary (and that's about all) discussion of the source of the continuing Armenian question in Episode Four, but even here, there is almost no followable line of the way the Ottoman wobbled in and out of the war until finally committing to the Central Powers following the second Russian Revolution in 1917, removing them from the war. There is even less discussion of impact of the tenuous Japanese alliance with the Russians and British springing from the settlement of the Russo-Japanese War in 1905.

A far better look at the complexity of World War I (although neither attempt or claim to be as complete in the material covered), with far more actual footage from the period in question is available in several documentaries ranging from Hollywood GOES TO WAR to WORLD WAR I IN COLOR. This Anglophile attempt at history is only for the dedicated Anglophile looking for entertainment pretending to be serious, not the serious amateur historian who will see too many holes spoiling the fun.


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