On Myths, Legends and Legends (2009) [Sunfilm]
This ten-part documentation series from HISTORY deals with the great myths, legends and legends Europe. This will be not only limited to the Greco-Roman mythology, but also the Anglo-Saxon, Nordic and modern, as invented by Tolkien. You get about 445 on two Blu-rays minutes entertaining documentation.
The first Blu-ray contains the consequences:
Odysseus – The Wrath of Poseidon
Ulysses Odysseus to Ithaca
Hades – god of the underworld
So far this is a very nice selection, whereby Odysseus is really chewed so much that it is really only good manners to treat him. Unfortunately, he can hardly arouse any real interest – at least for me. Especially since the two episodes of Odysseus are also the most annoying, because here the weaknesses of the series are very clear right at the beginning.
The biggest problem is probably that the consequences are intended for broadcast with advertising interruption and have not been changed for Blu-ray or DVD release. This way, you have at least three times a summary of the previous information per episode, which, if you do not suffer from a lack of concentration, really gets on your back. If you distribute the summaries over about 90 minutes of the Odysseus documentary, bearing in mind that the second part also briefly introduces the first, it really becomes a pain. This bad introduction overshadows the rest of the series.
But there are also positive things to say about the performance. All episodes seem to be from a single source, the style is maintained throughout. The film sequences are well made, although Thor and Tolkien’s mythical creatures are sometimes very trashy. The backdrop and mask are great. The scenes are surprisingly bloody, which then explains the age rating from 12 in connection with topics such as child murder and incest. It is also great that the actors keep their roles in the Greco-Roman episodes. What I don’t quite understand is why the scenes have been given a filter to make the pictures look old. In this way, it was ensured that HD is relatively senseless in these scenes. Because of the share of over 50%, it ultimately makes no difference whether DVD or Blu-ray.
That should now suffice for the visual and the structure – let’s get to the content. The series is amazingly informative. The individual episodes often go quite far, so that mostly the wider environment of the mythological figure is also explained. This means that e.g. at Zeus the titans are explained in more detail or at Hades the other characters of the mythological Greek underworld (such as Kerberus, Persephone and Sisyphus) are introduced.
The origins of Zeus, Hades and Medusa even gave me some new information. At the end of most episodes an attempt is made to show the connection to Christianity. It becomes clear that Christianity or even the Jewish faith is just a “patchwork religion” that has generously used the others. There were also some “crossovers”. In some biblical story, Jesus visits Hades in the underworld and ensures a reboot. The same is said to also exist for Nordic mythology.
Unfortunately the makers of the series shot themselves in the leg due to the stupid structure or the fact that the series was not re-edited for DVD / Blu-ray release. Well done in terms of content, the consequences quickly become annoying due to the constant repetitions.
Nevertheless, Hades, Medusa and Tolkien’s mythical creatures can be mentioned as a tip.
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