846 of 895 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A new appreciation for the wonder that surrounds us! Show it to your children...
Never have I been so moved by a series to exclaim in wonder and actually shed tears of joy at the beauty that surrounds us on this wonderful planet.
I have been watching it on Discovery HD Theater when it premiered in March. The first episode "Pole to Pole" set the tone by showing the range of life and species that exist on this planet. The subsequent episodes...
Published on April 21, 2007 by ZenWoman
438 of 517 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A very unfair rate...blame it on the industry!
Just in case, my 2 star rate is exclusively for the Blu-Ray product.
The Blu-Ray boxset comes with 4 discs that contains the 11 episodes that encompasses the complete series of planet earth.
If i had to rate the visual content of this series is 5 stars all the way, hands down.
As many other reviews, my discontent is the omission of special...
Published on January 24, 2010 by G. Zuniga
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70 of 82 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best HD Documentary Series Ever !,
This review is from: Planet Earth: The Complete BBC Series [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
Having seen this series on the BBC HD Channel Here in the UK I would recommend this series to anyone that has a Interest in Documentarys and has a Blu Ray player, and can safely say you havent seen anything like this before, the amount of detail the HD Cameras add to this is out of this world and the high production values make this a must have for anyone with a slight interest in the world that surronds us. Buy this and I guarentee you wont be disappointed! It the ideal thing to show off your new HD TV and Blu Ray player!
25 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Think you have seen it all? Think again!,
It is just amazing how BBC manages to produce wildlife documentaries of this calibre time and again.
First of all, you will be amazed to know that there is so much of untouched wilderness still out there. But you will also be saddened to know that there is actually nothing that is truly untouched!
The program is divided geographically and shows you some pretty spectacular shots. The aerial shots, in particular, are absolutely amazing. The limit to which the camera men have gone needs to be seen to be believed.
The image of the snow leopard hunting in thick snow is something that makes me feel privileged! And if you thought you have seen all there is to see about lions, wait till you see this one!
The photography is unbelievable, the sound is awesome, a must watch with the entire family. Certainly a collector’s edition.
157 of 190 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great series but Audio/Video quality disappointing,
This review is from: Planet Earth: The Complete Series [HD DVD] (HD DVD)
I know that I will be in the extreme minority here based on what I'm about to say but here it goes.
I watched this series on Discovery HD and purchased the HD-DVD set shortly after it was released. I read many reviews and forum posts about this set especially on Sigorny Weaver's narration. (Most couldn't stand her narration and were applauding the Attenborough narration on the new sets).
While I don't dislike David Attenborough's narration, I really prefer Weaver's. (I can't believe I said that!) Attenborough does sound older, (naturally) and I have to turn the volume up to hear him as well, I just feel Weaver's narration is more "effortless" to listen to and understand. This is not because of Attenborough's accent.
My remaining gripes about this set are in the Audio/Video quality, lack of features and the addition of the Weaver narration track if possible. Although someone in the forum did give good reasons as to why that probably did not happen due to the editing for American TV.
I know everyone loves the quality of the picture on this set and it is HD, but I have had HD for a few years, and am used to looking at it. I am very critical of picture quality and am disappointed... There is a lot of noise in many of the scenes for HD quality. I have 2 HD Televisions and basically the top of the line 1080p HD player as of this writing. (Toshiba XA-2)
I have hooked it up on HDMI and component, 1080p and 1080i, and the noise is there in many of the scenes. Some scenes are jaw dropping with almost no noise whatsoever, 3D-ish with incredible "POP" and many are just downright disappointing and I'm not only talking about dark scenes which digital cameras will naturally show noise. I feel that although this set was filmed mostly in HD, I'm sure they could have spent more time in the editing room cleaning up the picture in many scenes. I am going to say that this version at 1080p didn't really look better than the broadcast in HD. Although the broadcast is at lower resolution, 720p or 1080i, it did not look as noisy as the HD-DVD set. This may be because at higher resolution, imperfections are amplified and easier to see. Sitting 10-15+ feet away, many people will not even notice.
The audio quality of this set is not very good for an HD production. It could have been much better and would have added even more to the viewing experience of the series.
I know many will disagree with my opinion here, but they could have spent more time and care on this HD set. Just putting it on Blu-Ray or HD-DVD is not enough. They spent an ungodly amount making this thing over 5 years, spend and extra 2-3 months cleaning it up and make it look even better before you release it. I'm sure they were rushing to get this set commercial as soon as the initial airing was completed on Discovery Channel. It is possible to realease a 1080p disc with poor video quality. While I won't say the video quality is poor, I was expecting better and more consistant video quality.
I have come across other posts and reviews complaining of noise and grain in the picture. I am hoping to find someone I know with the Blu-Ray version to see if it's exactly like this one.
I doubt my review will deter anyone from purchasing this set. (It's not intended too.) It's more of a heads up and know what to expect. Don't pay the $99.99 retail like many stores have it for.
40 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Planet Earth is the "Titanic" of television nature documentaries!,
This review is from: Planet Earth: The Complete BBC Series [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
Planet Earth was filmed on Seven continents. It took Five years and included a $25 million budget. Planet Earth is such an epic, that it earns comparisons to some of the biggest Hollywood blockbusters. I think High Definition Digest said it best "It's the Titanic of television nature documentaries - a work of great majesty, high ambition and huge financial risk (after all, this isn't a genre known for generating huge profits)." David Attenborough's narrates the series and does a great job at it. Planet Earth first started airing as an eleven episode series on the BBC in England late last year, and more recently on the Discovery Channel and Discovery HD here in the United States. With Planet Earth you will see beautiful landscapes of our planet, and amazing animal scenes all which will leave you either breathless, or at times put you on the edge of your seat. How some of these things were even able to be photographed by humans often makes you wonder. If you have a 1080p HD TV you will really appreciate the beauty of this amazing series. This blu-ray is one of the best looking blu-ray discs to come out yet. The only thing I can complain about is the lack of bonus material which you will find on the DVD version of Planet Earth, but is is not included on the blu-ray or HD-DVD discs. Why they choose to not include this on these HD formats is beyond me, but other than that and the sound (Compared to the video, the audio is a bit of a disappointment) this series is almost perfect.
Planet Earth - The Complete BBC Series [Blu-ray]
Planet Earth - The Complete BBC Series [HD DVD]
Planet Earth - The Complete BBC Series
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank You, Thank You!!,
Being a huge fan of the Blue Planet series, needless to say I was stoked when I heard about Planet Earth. I set my tivo, checked it twice and patiently awaited that glorious day. The night came and like a kid watching his favorite Saturday morning cartoon, I was glued to the tv. I was immediately captivated by the unbelievable images in the opening segment...then as my brain prepared for the always entertaining,no one can do it like he does narration of the GREAT David Attenborough...I sat back in my chair in complete disbelief. WHO was this? Weaver? The actress? WHY?WHY?WHY? I quickly resigned myself to this new bit of info and decided to give her a chance (namely because the images were so incredible). As this first episode ticked by, I found myself getting madder and madder. Weaver's narration is nothing short of horrible. Her energy is non existant, she sounds like she's reading word for word and let's not even talk about how many times she mentions technology and the great risks taken to capture the images...THAT did nothing but piss me off even more! I AM interested in all the behind the scenes, but save it for the extras...PLEASE......waeving it into the narration like she does (sorry I couldn't resist) does nothing but distract and actually takes you out of the moment! Now don't get me wrong, I think she's a really good actress, but whomever decided to not have Attenborough (the GREATEST NATURE PRODUCER/NARRATOR OF OUR TIME) narrate this thing (dubbed the GREATEST NATURE PROGRAM TO DATE) should be drawn and quartered.
Well.... I tried, as the series went on, to ignore all these things but I finally turned it off half way through the 3rd night...I couldn't take it. For whatever reason, I went to the computer to see if I others felt the same as I, and sure enough, I wasn't alone. I got directed to Amazon where to my absolute disbelief, found what I'd been looking for! Turns out Attenborough DID narrate Planet Earth... for the BBC version! Needless to say, I ordered a copy right away and it arrived last night. It's EVERYTHING the Weaver version isn't. It's informative, entertaining, witty, and full of Attenborough charm....PLUS, there's NO mention of technology or risks or HD cameras or anything...just the show as it should be...all that stuff IS there (they segmented it in a seperate extra after each episode...BRILLIANT!) I can't tell you how happy I am...and if your an Attenborough fan like myself...THIS IS THE ONE TO GET!
110 of 134 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A sensationalist companion piece to The Living Planet,
You may be wondering why I didn't give this beautiful work 5 stars. This is because I'm objectively reviewing its educational value. As a life-long avid fan of the BBC nature documentaries and all things Sir David Attenborough, I will be reviewing Planet Earth in a more historical context, comparing it to previous releases:
Overview: Planet Earth attempts to cover the rich natural variety of the planet by focusing on one type of habitat/region per episode and displaying both the landscape and wildlife that occupy it. The venerable David Attenborough narrates (but is only partially involved in the writing this time) with his incomparable and dependable blend of warmth and objectivity. The BBC crew, as always, take their technical know-how to new heights, filming in high definition with all the advancing technology at their disposal to create another beautiful series.
This conceptual approach is not new for the BBC and has been covered already by The Living Planet (TLP) and will therefore be compared to it. Also, the heavy emphasis on spectacular hunts has been covered in Predators, as have the specific topics of penguins (Life in the Freezer), oceans (Blue Planet), birds (The Life of Birds) etc. and in much more depth.
Scope: The habitats covered overlap the ones in TLP but also cover new 'exciting' areas such as caves and mountains, skipping some of the more mundane but basic territories of grass-lands and coast-lines covered in TLP. Therefore this release is somewhat complementary to TLP in this regard.
Focus: Planet Earth is somewhat weak here, seemingly unable to drop beautiful images and stop exploring specific animals that it finds, all to the detriment of the theme of the episode. TLP managed to show only what is necessary for the topic, quickly skimming over many examples and varieties, and yet also provided more depth and information.
Structure: Very weak, even pathetic. TLP progressed logically from small to big, from simple to complex, and followed the timeline and progression of the features/animals it explored comprehensively. Planet Earth, however, feels almost random, in love with its beautiful images, slow-motions, and whimsically exploring very specific animals for many minutes at a time.
Educational value: Due to all of the above and its lack of depth, Planet Earth obviously suffers in comparison when it comes to making you feel educated. It focuses more on exotics, sensationalism, exciting hunts and kills, rare animals, wonders of the world, grand vistas, big dangers and huge numbers rather than bombarding us with information on the relevant facts and necessary details as in TLP.
Presentation: Obviously, Planet Earth is miles above TLP in terms of image quality, the rarity of things they managed to capture on film, and its style. But is that all we need?
David Attenborough: I miss the more intimate era of TLP where he used the planet as his classroom.
Summary: This is a sensationalist companion piece to The Living Planet. It gives a good feel of the riches of the planet, both overlaps and complements TLP in its scope, but is much less educational and well-structured. If you want screen-saver images, amazing footage and beauty, grab it. If you emphasize educational value, I suggest starting elsewhere first.
Side-Note: This release makes me think...what's next? I mean, Blue Planet and Life in the Undergrowth covered the last two obvious gaps in the BBC nature documentary repertoire. Planet Earth is their first 'remake'. Are we to expect more of the same? Will they start scraping the bottom of the barrel from now on? Will there be only more beautiful but mindless repetition? Or perhaps they will just keep seaching for new exotic things we haven't seen yet? Obviously there is always more to learn and see with nature but it feels like they covered everything systematically and the era of the fascinating introductory overview series is over. Perhaps more in-depth documentaries is the way to go but given the trends and where the money is, i doubt they'll do that. I'm apprehensive - is this the beginning of the end?
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Blu-ray version vs standard DVD,
This review is from: Planet Earth: The Complete BBC Series [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
So many times on Amazon I look for a review of the PRODUCT, and end up getting a review of the movie/documentary/story etc. So I will attempt to review the PRODUCT (blu-ray vs standard) rather than Planet Earth itself.
I bought the standard DVD format after seeing a few episodes on Discovery, and before I managed to get my blu-ray setup. I was thoroughly engrossed, the visuals, the quality, the information, and the narration by David Attenborough on this standard DVD were superb. Absolutely no complaints on this format.
Got my blu-ray setup, and this was the first product on my list (I actually bought the entire BBC collection which included Galapagos, Wild China, Ganges). Quality was as I expected of blu-ray, really brought out the images as 1080p would.
Major flaw on the blu-ray version however - the last disc of the standard DVD is not included, exactly why, I have been unable to find a reason. This disc contained some valuable extras, including a great segment on the state of the planet right now, and some compelling examples and visuals of our human impact on many locations around the globe.
My feelings towards this product are consequently mixed. There is no arguing the superiority of blu-ray vs regular DVD. However, Planet Earth was so spectacularly done, that looking at the images on the standard DVD format are still fantastic.
If this blu-ray version had all the discs included, I would recommend it hands-down ahead of the regular. If you are willing to surcumb to the marketing strategies (or whatever was the reason) of BBC and pay for both versions (as I ended up doing), then you're set. However, if you are looking to buy just 1 version, I personally think that the extra disc, partnered with the already magnificent quality of the standard DVD, puts it ahead of the blu-ray package offered.
17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Planet Earth -Mother Earth,
What a great work of love, of craftsmanship.This is spellbinding, in the truest sense of the word. Once you have started viewing this fascinating work of art, time, all sense of time, is frozen.It is a transcendent experience, as you are drawn into the looking glass in front of you for a peek at our world. what a marvel, how so much fits conceptually into the little screen in front of you. it is as breath taking on a small screen as it is on a large screen .it is all just a peephole allowing you to gaze upon our earth. Every shot is beautifully framed. Reverence abounds,and craftsmanship guides you as one marvel after another is revealed .This is an 11 part series each featuring a different aspect of planet earth ."from pole to pole" "caves" "desert" "forests""jungles" great plains""shallow seas" "ocean deep""ice worlds""seasonal forests""fresh water".This is not just point and shoot pretty pictures. It shows the beauty for sure, but also the synchronicity. Those fine lines of interdependency as well as the many obvious interconnections and interdependencies.We all should know what a powerful medium film is, and at it's very best I feel it can stand with the bestof the "arts" in Music as well as paint and sculpture .I do think this work has proved that point .I was as elevated watching this film as I have been listening to a Beethoven symphony, or a Bach fugue, or viewing the paintings of the masters.
I cannot even begin to guess how they captured so much on high resolution film. The time exposures, the vistas , the rituals , and some of natures best kept secrets, , the many forms of unusual life occurring in every corner, nook and cranny, of this beautiful planet so full of life .I cannot wait to view this with my grandchildren, nieces, and nephews,I am sure it will create memories for them, I am sure of this .There is so much wonderful and wondrous information presented here in this set. knowledge, and the most glorious visuals, capturing our amazing planet earth .This is a most enjoyable experience. share it ,create around it, teachers, families, friends this should be an event not just a film .My wife and I are seriously thinking that we will for one night a week throughout the summer show this on our front lawn. prepare a few simple snacks have the grandchildren and family over and open this up to the neighborhood some lawn chairs, popcorn, blankets, and you have a wonderful summer event .I am sure the children as well as the adults will look forward each week .Yes it is that good.Even if you have never really enjoyed a nature documentary this may well be the exception .If only for the stunning visuals .But I find that the new, odd, often exciting and amazing facts that seem to fill every minute of this great work thrilling .Again I wish to state that the vision of those who put this masterpiece together must be on par with the works of the masters of ages past. this is an achievement in film that boggles the mind in scope and succeeds !It would seem that in our age we also have those who future generations will likely look upon as Masters of their crafts as well. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not enough detail,
There are some problems with this production. It is very beautiful. The photography is stunning, but often distant. It does not have any of the David Attenborough charm. I miss seeing him poking around in the woods, whispering to us about the habits of the creature he is showing us. I miss his love of nature. This seems to be aimed at those with a short attention span. Its flits from a satellite image to shots from a helicopter, to a creature and then is gone onto something else. I am left with more questions than I find answers. For example, in the Desert episode, we see really amazing images from the Sonoran Desert, then we skip to a satellite image of Utah where there is a quip about there not being much life there and then we are off to see some Nubian Ibex. We don't even get to find out where the ibex are. On the one hand, every image we are presented with is exquisite but on the other, I feel short changed on the intellectual side. I am half way through the series and will finish it in awe of the photography, but with nagging questions.
23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Whats in this DVD and what is not.,
Well first let me say that filmwork here is beautiful and amazing. It is definitely on par with The Blue Planet - Seas of Life Collector's Set (Parts 1-4).
Now for what is not here. Those who have seen The Blue Planet - Seas of Life Collector's Set (Parts 1-4), Life in the Undergrowth, The Life of Mammals, The Life of Birds, and (not or) Life in the Freezer will be surprised to discover that this is first of the collection to offer few new behaviors and observations. Indeed if you have seen them all or own them all (as i do) little here will be new to you. This was somewhat shocking to me as so many reviews talk of seeing all these new behaviors that have never been filmed before. Having seen every minute of this dvd i can say that if you own the lot there is little new here. Even the scene praised before were the ducklings jump from the tree for dear life and than race for water was already seen in The Life of Birds and there the little baby birds did it at night without their parents presence using only the sound of their voice to guide them to water.
So is this worth owning if you own the lot, yes and no. If you own all the others released in the states this is still worth owning, if you have the money and if you are ok with getting a visual update but accept that little here is "new" in the way that The Blue Planet - Seas of Life Collector's Set (Parts 1-4), Life in the Undergrowth, The Life of Mammals and The Life of Birds were new. Without a doubt this is worth seeing for any veteran of all the others.
If you do not own the others I would STRONGLY recommend you seeing all the ones mentioned here in and THEN deciding which or all you would like to own.
For me, I own the lot and have seen them each maybe 10-20 times. This was a gift and a great one, I am very happy to own it. It is simply beautiful and the dvd transfer here is really good (Compare with Birds where the DVD transfer was horrible). Sir David is thrilling as always. However, like the 1st reviewer mentioned because he is not on-location most of his trademark on-location wit is missing. One can easily see the Directorial style of blue planet here. By and large i think it works here. However there are times when one wishes they would borrow from the team that did Undergrowth as the treatment of tight spaces leaves much to be desired.
This nitpicking that am doing is not to discorage people from seeing Planet Earth, but rather to encougare them to see the full BBC version with sir david before deciding to buy *IF* money is an issue. If money is no object than there is no reason not to add to this to your collection of the other "Life of.." and "Planet" DVDs.
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Planet Earth: The Complete BBC Series [Blu-ray] by David Attenborough (Blu-ray - 2007)