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Life (2010)

David Attenborough  |  NR |  DVD
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (762 customer reviews)

List Price: $59.98
Price: $43.41 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Blu-ray David Attenborough-Narrated Version $38.49  
DVD 4-Disc Version $20.05  
  4-Disc Version $43.41  

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Life + Human Planet + Planet Earth: The Complete BBC Series
Price for all three: $114.57

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Product Details

  • Actors: David Attenborough
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Subtitled, Widescreen, Box set, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: June 1, 2010
  • Run Time: 586 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (762 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B002UXRGLG
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #24,276 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Life" on IMDb

Special Features

The 10-episode miniseries on four discs
Life on Location: 10 behind-the-scenes video diaries found at the conclusion of each episode

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

This enthralling BBC series examines "the lengths living beings go to to stay alive," in the words of Sir David Attenborough (Oprah Winfrey narrates the Discovery Channel version). Aided by breathtaking high-definition cinematography, the makers of Planet Earth explore the more colorful strategies the world's creatures employ to procreate, evade predators, and obtain nourishment. Cameras travel though the air, under the water, and right into the faces of insects, like the alien visage of the stalk-eyed fly. Except for "Challenges of Life" and "Hunters and Hunted," each episode covers a different category, such as mammals and birds. Among the more memorable images: three cheetahs move with the relentless rhythm of mobsters, a school of flying fish glides through the air with the grace of ballerinas, and a Jesus Christ lizard skips across the water, like, well, you know. The strangest sights range from a pebble toad bouncing away from a spider like a rubber ball and brown-tufted capuchin monkeys pounding palm nuts with stone tools like the apes in 2001: A Space Odyssey. Witty writing and skillful editing, which distills thousands of hours of footage, make the learning go down easy (at one point, Sir David references Jurassic Park, which featured his brother, Richard).

If the sound effects seem overamped, George Fenton's score is always on the money, adding humor and suspense at crucial moments (martial drums for the mud skippers, woozy brass for the Darwin's beetle). Nonetheless, delicate sensibilities may find some sequences disturbing, as when Komodo dragons feed on a water buffalo or when a leopard seal dines on a penguin (according to Attenborough, the Komodo siege caused the camera operators "emotional turmoil"). More often, the filmmakers capture the moment of impact before moving on. The set comes complete with 10 featurettes on the four-year production. --Kathleen C. Fennessy

Stills from Life (Click for larger image)


Product Description

Four years in the making, filmed over 3000 days, across every continentand in every habitat, Life is the latest wildlife blockbuster from the BBC’s award-winning Natural History Unit, the producers of Planet Earth and The Blue Planet. Packed with excitement, revelation, entertainment, and stunning screen firsts, this breathtaking ten-part epic presents 130incredible stories from the frontiers of the natural world. Discover theglorious variety of life onEarth and the spectacular and extraordinary tactics animals and plants have developed to stay alive. This is evolution in action; individual creatures under extreme pressure to overcome challenges from adversaries and their environment, pushing the boundaries of behavior.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
412 of 427 people found the following review helpful
Format:Blu-ray
Over the past two decades, the BBC Natural History Unit has become a prolific documentary factory of the highest order, with ever-improving skills and increasing dedication. Some of their productions are relatively minor, but this is one of their flagships, and you can tell this because they use David Attenborough as the narrator (who is still in top form).

The theme for this 10-part series is the challenges of life and how various animals and plants solve them. This includes unusual and extreme food gathering techniques, hunting strategies, surprising evolutionary weapons and defenses, adaptations to harsh environments, mating rituals, and the lengths they go to in order to pick the right breeding partners.

Each episode covers this vast topic in specific areas: The first episode is an overview and top-20 hit parade of the upcoming episodes. Each of the ensuing episodes then cover a branch of the animal kingdom, including reptiles, insects, mammals, plants, birds, fish, with additional specialized episodes covering hunting, sea-life and primates.

This will obviously overlap with many of their previous releases, especially The Trials of Life, Attenborough's series covering the animal kingdom, and even The Living Planet and Planet Earth. But their approach here is interestingly well-chosen: Previously covered footage and educational information is usually summarized, before continuing with the more obscure, the upgraded, and the exciting new details.
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709 of 763 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Why pay the same for lower quality? March 20, 2010
Format:Blu-ray
The Life series is fantastic, but it comes in two versions -- this one, narrated by Oprah Winfrey for the US market; and the original version as narrated by the naturalist David Attenborough.

While the cinematography remains unchanged, Oprah's narration lacks the depth that Attenborough's years of experience as both naturalist and narrator brings to the table. I strongly recommend waiting for the US release of the original BBC version, narrated by David Attenborough.
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652 of 708 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars You have got to be kidding me. March 21, 2010
By K.H.
Format:Blu-ray
This is atrocious. I'm watching "Life" on Discovery channel right now, with Oprah narrating. Some of the reviewers said that the script was re-written for her, and I can believe it. I can't believe Attenborough saying lines like "hunting crab seals is toooo much work!" Oprah narrates this thing as if she were reading a bedtime story to little kids and comes off as snarky and condescending. In the opening segment, she's discussing a fox chasing an ibex kid and it's basically like "heeeere comes the fox! UH OH!!"

The most embarrassing thing is that I'm thinking that British people think that Americans demanded this. Who's going to be doing the next special, Dr. Phil? "Oh-kaaay, here comes the alee-gaytor, it's prey tries to run, but that neeeever works! HAW HAW HAW!" Don't get this. Get the real version.
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350 of 383 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars BBC knows - Why change what's perfect? March 20, 2010
Format:Blu-ray
Why on earth have they decided to dub the documentary into American English baffles me. Is British English appallingly obscure and incomprehensible?

First Harry Potter and now this. What a shameful way to undermine language for the sake of a couple of bucks?

I have various BBC Documentaries - I LOVE them, and despite the fact that I am not British I understand everything, and David Attenborough's voice in much more credible, isn't this what he does professionally?

Oprah would probably be more suitable for bedtime story recordings for sleepy youngsters.

I suggest getting the original David Attenborough version (Check the star rating and compare!)
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235 of 259 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is why I bought a blu-ray player! April 1, 2010
Format:Blu-ray
I have seen the first two in this series in both the Attenborough and Oprah narrations. The Attenborough version is, of course, the better of the two.
While there is a general idea (at least among American anti-intellectuals) that scientists are boring, uptight, fuddy-duddies, the truth is that the well-educated populizers of science, such as Attenborough, still hold a very dear place in the hearts of a very large group of people in America who have not yet gone bat guano crazy. The reason why a man like Sir David Attenborough is so well esteemed among enthusiasts of nature documentary, whereas Oprah Winfrey is not, is because when one devotes their entire life to the understanding of a certain topic they are able to bring a wonder-filled enthusiasm, backed by a substantial knowledge, to that topic. Most of us are not looking for a "Wow...Look...nature is cool!" sort of commentary. We already understand that. We wish for someone to fill us with the wonder of understanding. The only thing that separates humankind from the animals in these documentaries is that we are truly *thinking* about them. Why stare, slack-jawed, as if nature were a train wreck while ludicrously under-qualified talk show hosts point and extrapolate the obvious when we can spend that time in awe while actually learning? This documentary is one of the finest ever made, but only the BBC version is worth consideration.
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Confused about PS3 and this BD
Bought it, played perfectly on PS3
Jan 20, 2011 by C5H8NNaO4 |  See all 13 posts
1080i or 1080p?
David, on any 1080p set bigger than 40 inches you will definitely see a difference from 1080i to 1080p, especially if you are using good video cables and an above average TV--if not you need to see an eye doctor.
Netscorer, you are incorrect in your statement. 1080i is NOT visually better than... Read More
Apr 2, 2010 by Music Man |  See all 16 posts
U.S. version release date an narrator?
I hope is Sir David Attenbourgh, nothing against Oprah, but won't buy if that's the case
Jan 17, 2010 by Ed |  See all 18 posts
this or planet earth?
If you can only have one, I'd go with Life. As I said in my review, Planet Earth jumps around a lot and goes for breadth instead of depth. It tries to cover the entire planet in the series. Life has more spectacular views of a smaller selection of animals and locations.
Aug 17, 2010 by buru buru piggu |  See all 3 posts
Barnes & Noble is selling for $ 39.89
WOW, Barnes & Noble is stepping up!
May 13, 2010 by K. J. Lee |  See all 15 posts
which region is this? Be the first to reply
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