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History Classics: The Color of War


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History Classics: The Color of War + World War II in Color + WWII in HD (DVD)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

An award-winning documentary filled with striking images, THE COLOR OF WAR is a spectacle of color, sights, sounds, and memories.

At its core, World War II was a black-and-white struggle between good and evil. But the everyday scenes of carnage, human resistance, and guttural warfare were much more complex. A striking assemblage of color footage and photographs from national archives and private collections, THE COLOR OF WAR delivers striking perspectives on the day-to-day experience from every imaginable angle. From the first draftees thrown into the breach to the sheer boredom between battles to the uniforms worn and the objects carried, this unparalleled collection of voices is further illuminated by letters and diaries, communiques from the battlefield and the sounds and songs of the era.

Narrated by Peter Coyote (Erin Brockovich, E.T.) the 13 programs included in THE COLOR OF WAR constitute the most extensive all-color documentary ever produced on the Second World War.


Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: n, a
  • Directors: The History Channel
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 5
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: A&E HOME VIDEO
  • DVD Release Date: August 14, 2012
  • Run Time: 587 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0082GN8T4
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #42,335 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

47 of 50 people found the following review helpful By Bob D. on February 11, 2007
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
If you've seen any of the "Color of War" series on The History Channel and found them interesting, this DVD set is a must have. It contains every episode. I found the price to be reasonable and enjoyed watching it without any bothersome commercials.
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36 of 38 people found the following review helpful By Paul Freeland on August 2, 2009
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
The films vividly depict the horror & brutality of warfare. This series should be mandatory viewing by all High School students so they get a true picture and better appreciation of what their fellow countrymen where willing to do in order to allow them to enjoy the freedoms they have. As a combat infantryman from the Korean War, I feel that I can speak with some authority. Paul Freeland
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Dave on April 19, 2010
Format: DVD
This series was done in 2001, but it's not airing on TV lately. I'm afraid it will not be available on DVD in the future, due to a lack of demand. Not a dramatization - real footage, with firsthand accounts in the audio. Too bad it doesn't have closed captions. Even so, I'm very happy I got it.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By God is a refuge for us (Psalms 62:8) on January 31, 2014
Format: DVD
The producers limited this documentary to "color only" footage. This means that the stories they tell are less complete than they could have been if they had used both color and black/white footage.

Instead of covering places or battles or events in detail, the documentary is split into war topics (see the list of episodes at the end of my review). Do you want to learn about what happened at Normandy, the Battle of the Bulge, or the Philippines? You won't get that with this DVD set. You may hear bits and pieces about some of these places/battles in several episodes.

Some documentaries that cover WWII (ones that use color and black/white footage) concentrate on places/battles/events; they not only show more complete footage, but their narration/explanation of what is occurring in the footage is more complete.

Every episode had a theme, yet they still lacked focus; almost every episode either bounced around from theater to theater or spanned the entire war period (or both) in one 45 minute episode.

There were no veteran interviews. That was disappointing. Instead, "the voices of soldiers, commanders, and civilians come to life through letters, diaries and battlefield communiques."

Some of the footage was repeated among the episodes. Most of the footage was new to me. Some of the footage was familiar (also shown in other documentaries).

Despite some of these negatives, I thought the series was worthwhile. There was footage that I have not seen before, and I learned things from the narrative.

Visit my Amazon wish lists to see my 4-star and 5-star military/war DVDs:
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Reptile on July 28, 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I was actually looking for a different series than this (which apparently is out of production), but what a great alternative find. I don't have cable, thus no History Channel, but wow, this is a fantastic collection of color footage (varying quality, some very sharp and clear, some very poor and broken) along with readings of letters and various facts and statistics. I've just barely gotten to the second disc and I'm impressed. This series has so much footage, letter readings, etc. that you really get a feel for what it must have been like for people to go through this war, both the good times and the bad. It honestly makes me wonder how this current generation of young people would be able to respond to such a desperate situation like WWII. This series makes you see how the current Iraq and Afghanistan wars, as bad as they are, are nowhere near the terror WWII brought upon the world. So humbling and very highly recommended! Even for middle and high schools, and hopefully you might consider buying one for local your library.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Jeff Kline on May 9, 2014
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Probably one of the best war documentaries ever made. I've seen them all. Nice seeing original footage and on topics usually ignored, such as quartermaster and supply divisions, and the carnage suffered by British air crews.

It will give you a broader picture of the war, other than the usual combat segments that have been used and re-used since the war ended.

My only complaint is that there is the usual hoard of German and Japanese bodies shown, but few American. I think after 70 years we can stop censoring the war.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Eric Bergerud on January 23, 2012
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I teach and write military history for a living and have done two books on WWII. Documentaries on the "Big One" must be in the high hundreds and include some of the best efforts in the genre (the classic "The World at War" from the 70's is remarkable and the BBC series of WWII subjects put out around 2000 rank up there). Most are pretty average. This one belongs right at the top. It is not "Gee, Neat, It's WWII in Color!" that could describe some series. Instead it is a wonderfully written series that covers all facets of the American war effort. Narrated by the splendid actor Peter Coyote, they dispense with "talking head" historians but include excerpts from letters, some keyed to the events on film. There are 17 episodes of 45 minutes a head, so a lot of ground is covered. (The episode on morale is puts the misery and boredom back into WWII where it does belong.) The producers don't wear the historical research on their sleeves, but as one who has made the study of this war a career, I can testify that it is there. John Ellis, a fine WWII historian is listed as a consultant, but the writers were obviously very up to date on the whole "experience of war" genre of military history popular for the last 25 years. Consider the color film, much of it surprisingly good and done on genuine color film, to be welcome bonus. Highest recommendations.
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History Classics: The Color of War
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