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Reclaiming the Blade (Single-disc edition)

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Editorial Reviews

Reclaiming the Blade celebrates the culture and craft of swords and the Hollywood legends and academic warriors who wield them. The film explores the Medieval and Renaissance blade; a profound and beautiful object handcrafted by master artisans of old. Today, much of the history of the sword remains cloaked under a shadow of legend. Reclaiming the Blade highlights today s cinematic tribute to the beauty and necessity of the sword through films such as Lord of the Rings, Star Wars, Chronicles of Narnia and The Pirates of the Caribbean.

Narrated by acclaimed Welsh actor John Rhys-Davies and produced with the support of Peter Jackson, Weta Workshop, Skywalker Sound and the Royal Armouries, this unique film brings to life our fascination with swords in popular media and the emergence of a worldwide movement to reclaim the ancient art of medieval and renaissance martial arts. Highly anticipated, Reclaiming the Blade traces the sword s true history throughout the ages and features the following talent:

Viggo Mortensen (Eastern Promises), Karl Urban (Borne Supremacy, JJ Abrams new Star Trek), Richard Taylor (LOTR, King Kong, Narnia), Bob Anderson (Hollywood Sword-master to Errol Flynn, Johnny Depp, Star Wars, etc), and legendary Illustrator John Howe (LOTR, Narnia).

The cutting-edge soundtrack to the film illuminates the story with an original orchestral score by composer David James Nielsen and pop/rock hits from the Doves, Yo La Tengo, The Dandy Warhols, and Juliana Hatfield, among others.

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: John Rhys-Davies, Viggo Mortensen, John Clements, Karl Urban, Richard Taylor
  • Directors: Daniel McNicoll
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Surround Sound, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Galatia Films
  • DVD Release Date: May 7, 2009
  • Run Time: 78 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001V7UTP2
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #87,842 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

65 of 66 people found the following review helpful By R. McCoy on April 23, 2009
Format: DVD
Background: I'm a retired military officer, and a serious student of military history. This superb film explores the medieval/Renaissance history of the sword, and by extension, European martial arts of the period. It breaks the study down into sections such as: how we view the sword today, particularly as reflected in movies; The actual history of the sword; and modern research, both scholarly and active to recreate the sword and its use. It has long annoyed me that the history of Western combat has been lost, and even falsified. It is incredible to believe that warriors of the period were simply flailing about with no skill at arms. Their lives, their honor, the well-being of their families, their religion, etc all depended on getting it right, yet most history books would have you believe that they possessed no skills beyond a blind courage. This very well done film provides the viewer with an introduction to the sword, and is an excellent starting point for further research. The experts and enthusiasts who are interviewed infect the viewer with their spirit and their knowledge. This is a film long overdue.
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28 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Stage 3 on July 7, 2009
Format: DVD
I recently watched Reclaiming the Blade, a documentary about swords and the romanticism that surrounds them. I had been tracking the progress of the film through its website, eagerly anticipating the release of the movie. I was very excited when it was released and I purchased it within days of it becoming available. I was very happy that the delivery was quick so that I could view it without waiting too long.

When the movie first started I was disappointed as it seemed to be based on hyperbole and worse still it appeared that the history of swords was brushed over quickly to concentrate on sword use in movies. I figured that since I had bought the DVD that I would keep watching it; and I am glad that I did. While the movie comments were interesting that was not why I bought the documentary.

In my opinion, the documentary really took off after the the swords in the movies section. It dealt with swords and also Western Martial Arts. The movie did not try to argue superiority issues between Eastern and Western Martial Arts, it just pointedout that Europe had a tradition of martial arts, which were written about extensively at the time. Western Martial Arts were 'lost' with the coming of firearms that reduced the need to have skill in favour of masses of muskets firing simultaneously. The documentary had a Kundo instructor who gave his view about Western and Eastern Martial Arts. He summed up the difference perfectly when he stated that Eastern Martial Arts were more esoteric than Western Martial Arts.

The experts consulted about Western Martial Arts were clear that the tradition of the European styles was about killing, and it did not matter how attractively it was done.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By William H. Richardson on August 4, 2009
Format: DVD
I am a devote to martial arts and as all of us who grew up in the late 70's 80's and even 90's have been duped by our own culture into believing the Asians had all the answers. We have forgotten our own heritage and some of it's glory. Don't get me wrong I lived in Japan and love the Asian culture and have studied it's arts both martial and matirial and never knew about my own. I strongly reccomend this title it is everything the reveiwer said and more. GET THE 2-DISK SPECIAL EDITION. The special fetures disk is just as good as the movie it's self.Reclaiming the Blade (2-disc Special Edition)
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Marc C. Andryuk on January 6, 2010
Format: DVD
Reclaiming the Blade is a mixed bag of a documentary with a lot of potential that doesn't quite come together. I kept on getting the feeling that there were several documentaries that were partially filmed and jammed together. My girlfriend (a foil fencer) made the observation that the film seemed like the introductory episode to a series on the topic. If reclaiming the blade could be expanded into a multi-episode documentary it could be terrific with time to explore various topics like sport fencing, the multitude of different western sword styles, theatrical swordsmanship, eastern martial arts in the west, design & construction of swords etc. in depth.

The documentary that we got covers all of those, and more, but with odd fits and starts of depth. The chronology jumps around a bit. The movie is ostensibly about the rediscovery and re-emergence of western medieval / Renaissance swordsmanship. That is the movie's stated purpose, but only something like a third of this 78 minute movie deals with that. There is little discussion about the actual masters who wrote this stuff down, and only a few names are dropped.

One major problem can be seen on the cover. The scored interviews with Viggo Mortensen, Karl Urban, Richard Taylor & his WETA team. This takes huge chunks of film time to talk about Hollywood sword fights and nice but very long AFI style montage of sword fights. Instead of being a nice minute or two about how Hollywood's influence on the views of swordsmanship, it becomes the savior of swordsmanship. (Not even a bone to literature? Or Prince Valiant? Or D&D?) Now there is a gem here. They scored an interview with Bob Anderson. He is the living legend of film swordsmanship.
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Topic From this Discussion
What is taking so long?
We are sorry for any confusion about the release date. The date listed is incorrect and should read July 7, 2009. We are happy that you are interested in the film and hope you enjoy it.
Jul 2, 2009 by Galatia Films |  See all 3 posts
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