Extremely disappointing. The narrator was horrible. It sounded like every statement was a wuestion or he was asking permission to speak. Bad choice. I was most disappointed that Not one movie with a Black cast ot Black director was mentioned. Carmen Jones!? Cotton Comes To Harlem!? What about the blaxploitation movies of the 70’s!? The Spike Lee movies of the 80’s!? The missed the mark completely.
Mark Cusins introduces over 100 years film history. He talks about it in a systematical and comprehensive way. To know or to see what is happening in the world from filmmakers's eyes, which is so fascinating. It is the first time to peek some films from Africa. It is a bit of long and narrating voice is a bit of boring. Also there are some individual opinions. Above all, it is a great cinema piece itself.
I was only able to make it half way through the first of 5 DVD's. Maybe it was just me but I almost immediately felt the American film industry and all their accomplishments were being criticize or down played. After that point, the narrators’ lines all seem to end with a European snobbish feel to them. I was disappointed because the documentary could have been very entertaining and full of history.
I also like Mark Cousins' narration. Sure he makes some observations that need more support, but he's moving through an amazing quantity of material, much of which is unknown to viewers in the United States. And he balances out his bold assertions with touching observations about the importance of stories about people. He champions rebels. He admires innovation. He appreciates realism. And he likes more talk, less plot. I love the guy.
Sorry, guys... I stand by the narrator's voice. I thought it was very "zen" and matched the contemplative mood of the film. I would argue this is not for "binge watching" so much-- more for unwinding during an episode, then moving on to something else, letting the content sink in. I definitely appreciated the history lessons and it makes me realize how limited I am for not having had (or seeking) access to the full breadth of foreign films that the narrator introduces us to. I watched the Seventh Seal because of this series, and I enjoyed it so much more than if I picked it up on my own. It not only introduces you to individual movies, but directors to pay attention to, ones you can follow like favor authors. It just helps you be aware of certain details you may miss as a casual viewer. I only had one film class in college, and it was fantastic. I completely understand why people pursue the subject as a Major. This series gives you that feeling.
This is a fabulous, chronological documentation of film. As a result of having watched it, I have added many films to my "must see" list. The only down side is that the commentator has an extremely irritating, monotone voice which is hard to take ...
This is the best global movie survey on DVD that I have seen with two faults: 1. Professor Cousins monotone is distracting after the first 30 minutes. 2. No subtitles except to translate foreign languages for the hearing impaired like me. This is a great source to evaluate foreign and many historic films for check out from KCLS. Thoroughly evaluated by Roger Ebert.
The series will challenge you but not because you have to hear an Irish lilt for than one minute. The series glosses over Hollywood for the most part, asking us to consider all that we did not know was going on in other countries' cinema. The film clips are amazing. I don't agree with everything said, but I was able to "read" movies so much better after having invested my time in this. The discussion here of Prof. Cousins' mild accent seems out of place in Boston (of all places) and most especially for a series that is encouraging us to view and hear more, many more, foreign films.
if you don't like his narration return it early whiners!
Sometimes writers decide they are going to narrate their audio books themselves. Sometimes it works out well (Martyn Waites e.g.). Often it does not. Mark Cousins' narration of the brilliant DVD set covering the history of film is analogous to the author who narrates but shouldn't. The history and analysis is excellent (5 star) but his droning voice with every statement lilting upwards at the very end... AAAAAGH !!!!! So it loses a star for that. If only he'd got an actor to do it.
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