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Extreme Trains: Season 1 (2009)

Matt Bown , History Channel  |  NR |  DVD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (65 customer reviews)

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Extreme Trains: Season 1 + The History of American Railroads: The Years of Steam
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Product Details

  • Actors: Matt Bown
  • Directors: History Channel
  • Format: Box set, Color, NTSC, Closed-captioned
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: A&E HOME VIDEO
  • DVD Release Date: June 30, 2009
  • Run Time: 376 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (65 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001M9OL5S
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #144,220 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

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Editorial Reviews

Your ticket to some of the most thrilling, high-octane train rides in history is here! Extreme Trains host Matt Brown, a real-life railroad conductor from New England, brings his infectious passion for these monster machines to rail journeys across the United States. Feel the force of railroads in history, and see how railroading is about more than machines, cargo and challenging terrain. From the demolition of Penn Station, to the first train robbers and how the Nazis tried to blow up the rails in World War II, to the human blood, sweat and tears of the stokers, engineers, and bathroom cleaners that keep the industry moving, tag along with Matt on one of history s most exciting rides. Episodes include Amtrak s Empire Builder, The Burlington Northern Santa Fe Freight Train, The Norfolk Southern Coal Train, The Ringling Bros. Circus Train,
and The Union Pacific Refrigeration Train.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
39 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars we WILL get this... December 21, 2008
"We" are watching this series as it comes on TV now and have seen all the episodes to date (not in order): high speed Acela, Ice cold produce train, Coal train, Amtrak sleeper train, steam train... did I miss any?

We have a train crazed 5 year old who makes us watch them over and over on our DVR until the next new episode runs and he then fixates on that one... We like the host Matt - I describe him as an adorable train geek - and as a parent I dont find him annoying like some video narrator/hosts can be (after you have to listen to the same video 100 times with you child) and the sound bites my 5 year old are picking up from him are more funny than anything ("full speed and full throttle" is one...)

The series is a good blend of info on the featured train and tangents into related subjects (how do you clean out a steam engines boiler? where do old freezer car box cars go to die and be recycled?...) If this video set was out now we would immeadiatley have bought it for Christmas (and to free up the space on our DVR) or told our childs uncles and such to get it for him for a present!
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25 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hello, my name is...and I love trains! December 27, 2008
I stumbled upon this series while looking for train shows for my 6 year old son...he loves the show so much we have almost every show to date and will definitely buy this dvd. He has even begun to say "Hello, my name is Kieran and ever since I was little I have loved trains."

I have to agree Matt is awesome...he is grown kid playing with real life trains....I learned so much about trains and the history about them that I can't wait til next season....Trains rule at our house! We are train matter where trains are we will find them.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exreme Trains Finally A Documentary That Is Interesting December 9, 2008
This documentary about massive trains and their destinations has been one of the most interesting series on the TV since Tony Robinson's Worst Jobs in History. Matt Brown is a train man: a conductor on a state of Maine rail line . He talks to the camera like he is talking to all of us as he rides the train or performs the many jobs that are needed to get the train to the Job.
I have seen all of the shows to date and I can't wait to collect all of these on DVD . Well worth the wait .Coming is the Ringling Brothers Circus Train .Tonight is the Steam Train episode.
Also what about the blue CSX Passenger train that pulls through Atlanta ? It must have at least 17 coaches . Is it a passenger train or a moving university ? I don't know . It might be an idea for a future episode.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's very good but could have been better. June 17, 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This two disk set shows a lot of different trains and train operations. But it sometimes seemed this series is more about the host than the topic. His face fills the screen constantly, with quick cuts to different train operations. I saw a lot of quick glimpses into how things are done, but would have really enjoyed longer, more detailed shots of the hardware and shorter shots of the host. One thing for sure, I know what the host looks like while riding and working around trains. I'm certainly no expert, but I did hear one bit of information about train line brakes that was backwards (applying air to the train brake line applies the brakes, which it doesn't). Later on in another segment the host seems to get the correct script and mentions the actual way train brakes work. There's some interesting shots in a major locomotive repair facility, and in the railroad control center. Just be ready to see the technical stuff once the host moves his face out of the way. Did we get to see how a locomotive is started? No. Why they are rarely shut down? No. Close-up shots of the instrument panel, especially the ones with computer screens? No. All in all it's enjoyable and worth the price. But the camera crew was RIGHT THERE! They could have captured so much more, but missed it. If you're not interested in the technical stuff, than you'll probably be 100% satisfied. Otherwise, get ready to join the host close up and ride the rails (while looking over his shoulder).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful for kids and their parents March 21, 2009
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
My son and I watched this over and over again when it was playing on TV -- and yes I do have it on order.

This is a nice set of DVDs on trains for the common person. Some people comment that Matt Brown appears obnoxious... I think his enthusiasm shows through.

Many other train shows only depict old, grainy outdoor images of trains going past on the screen. What I liked about this show was that it took the viewer behind the scenes, and put the trains in context of something bigger. And they have a good selection, including "steamies" and the Acela express that travels from Washington DC to Boston. There's even a circus train.

If you or your kid like trains, this is a great buy. If you're a very serious train enthusiast looking for detailed specifics of locomotive make and model, this show is probably not for you.
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8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Extreme and noisy froth September 7, 2010
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
The topic of trains is one of great interest despite the poor state of US railroads with the legend and the logic of railroads is a permanent part of US history. What would DC be without the Metro or Chicago without the 'L"? This series while well intended and at times interesting is nothing if not reminiscent of the faux sports competition of various Gordon Ramsey kitchen projects or the numerous team sports on the Food Channel. The most positive to be said about the presenter is that at least he is confined to Maine and will not be sitting next to me on a flight.
The topic has great potential but its presentation as "We've got to get this train of produce to Schenectady by x hours" as if the train were not running on a 365/24/7 schedule is inane - as if "We" including the presenter were a help and not a hinderance. A richness of subject matter and scenery is subsumed by moronic chit chat (or is that chit chat by a moron?) and superficiality. Amtrak's Acela is not even close to being among the world's fastest (or reliable) trains given the poor infrastructure, the freight trains are par for the course with France and Germany equal in every respect except the latter don't derail as often. The program ignores the rich history of the stations (hey let's go to the rodeo in Cheyenne instead!!), the scenery, the fascinating history and technology of the infrastructure support (yes there is some but the commentary is by the idiot commentator - "isn't this great" not by the experts who as one reviewer noted appear to either cringe or ignore Mr. Matt). the future role of the railroad in the US - if the funding doesn't end up with the vampire squids in NYC etc. etc. Imagine the BBC or PBS doing this series - it would be sublime. There's still room.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Great DVD for my train lover.
Published 1 month ago by Juliann
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
outstanding pictures very informant
Published 2 months ago by gary pinner
5.0 out of 5 stars EXCELLENT!
Purchased for my grandchild who LOVES trains! So educational! He is glued these DVD's!!! If you have a train lover you'll love this set!
Published 7 months ago by ZebbityBebbity
5.0 out of 5 stars Not your typical train documentary!
My son had already seen most of these, but after moving we lost his precious 844 video so I ordered it. Of course he loves it! Read more
Published 8 months ago by M. Pinales
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice train series
I would give this a five if it were not for the DVDs not playing in my Sony BlueRay/DVD player. They did play on my PC.
Published 9 months ago by Mark
3.0 out of 5 stars Subtiltes / Closed Captioning not there or not working.
There aren't any subtitles that I could find with this set. They should be available, A&E / History almost certainly had the captioning data on hand, but I couldn't find them on... Read more
Published 10 months ago by J. Demaagd
5.0 out of 5 stars Why I like this DVD
Have always enjoyed trains and owning this copy allows me to visit anytime. Plus I don't have to watch any kind of TV filled
with ads or PBS begging for funds!!!
Published 11 months ago by Larry R Cook
4.0 out of 5 stars Love the DVD
I love the different stories of all the trains, current and from the past and how things are made as well
Published 11 months ago by Kevin Reith
5.0 out of 5 stars My grandson loves the Extreme Trains video. It's absolutely PERFECT!
I gave this train DVD to my grandson for Christmas last year. He loves trains. He has been watching it at least 5x a week and just absolutely loves the video. Read more
Published 11 months ago by skinnygirl140800
5.0 out of 5 stars Very informative and fun.
I found the shows to be very informative and lots of fun. Matt Bown's enthusiam for the subject make it so. Not for everybody, but I thought it was great.
Published 12 months ago by Steve Cooper
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