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Rome: Power & Glory (1999)

Peter Coyote , Discovery Communications Inc.  |  NR |  DVD
3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)

List Price: $49.99
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DVD 2-Disc Version $8.28  
  6-Disc Version $4.25  

Frequently Bought Together

Rome: Power & Glory + When Rome Ruled + ROME: Rise and Fall of an Empire
Price for all three: $41.57

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Product Details

  • Actors: Peter Coyote
  • Directors: Discovery Communications Inc.
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 6
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Questar
  • DVD Release Date: February 16, 2010
  • Run Time: 360 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (45 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #187,031 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews


Intriguing, informative, and entertaining --DVD Review

As good a DVD history of Rome and its empire as this reviewer has ever seen. Very highly recommended --Library Journal

Product Description

Disc 1: The Rise
Sorts fact from fiction in the legends surrounding the birth of the mighty Roman Empire.
Disc 2: Legions of Conquest
The most feared warriors in history rise from a citizen s army to become the most formidable military power in
the world.
Disc 3: Seduction of Power
Stories of Julius Caesar and Augustus in their pursuit for power and control of the Roman Empire.
Disc 4: Grasp of Empire
Romans initially welcomed the conquered peoples they brought into their Empire, then eventually enslaved
them all.
Disc 5: The Cult of Order
With growing unrest in the Empire, Romans embraced what was then a marginal religious cult Christianity.
Disc 6: The Fall
While Romans are distracted with games and entertainment, their enemies draw nearer and social
unrest within threatens to reach a boiling point.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
129 of 132 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Your art is to rule, Roman July 13, 2001
At 5+ hours, this is certainly an ambitious documentary of the rise, hegemony & eventual decline and fall of the Roman Empire. For many subjects, one would think that a study of this length would be overkill. However, when you're talking about an empire which spanned nearly 1,200 years, 5 hours barely scratches the surface. Don't get me wrong, this is a fairly well-done piece. However, there is only so much that you can stick into a video of this duration.
One of the most impressive aspects of the DVD is its inclusion of people of varying expertise. Sure, it has the normal college history professors, but it also summons an art professor, as well as a US Army general to discuss Roman military tactics, and a US Senator to analyze Roman politics & diplomacy.
On the downside, some notable personages in history are omitted, such as Spartacus, Attila the Hun, Shapur, Vespasian (except for a brief biographical sketch) and Justinian. Again, 5 hours is hardly enough time to delve into every nook & cranny of Roman history, but one would think that these names would stand out, nonetheless.
The worst feature of this documentary is the soundtrack. It is very amateurish and repetitive, basically the same musical phrase played over & over & over again. By the 3rd hour, hearing it gets quite annoying. One need only view "Greeks: Crucible of Civilization" to be convinced that there is no reason a historical documentary can't have a quality score.
The melodramatic and redundant music is almost entirely offset by the professionalism of the narrator, however; Coyote's voice is pleasing to the ear & does not get tiresome to listen to.
What the DVD does cover, it covers very well.
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83 of 88 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Some depth, but fails to be as great as its subject April 20, 2001
If I could offer 3.5 stars it would be a toss as to whether I did that, or gave it the 3 stars I'm offering. This is a reasonably competent production, but, as other reviewers have noted, it's repetition is very noticeable - even if you view the episodes in isolation.
Good points
The series does move from the beginnings of Rome to it's demise, and does give a convincing feel for the ebb and flow of Rome. It covers quite a few notable incidents, some of which will almost definitely be new to viewers unless they are students of ancient history. It succeeds in conveying something of the originality of Roman society (while noting it's heavy Greek borrowings), and appears to give a balanced assessment. There is a reasonable information content in this DVD.
Bad points
There was one episode in particular in which I felt over 50% of what was discussed had already been discussed. There must be at least four or five times when the same incident is recounted. This is all wasted space really. Also, I felt that the flow of the series was a bit disordered. Whilst it is roughly chronological, it digresses, following a thematic path sometimes, but seems to do haphazardly.
It is moderately informative and credible, but won't satisfy those looking for a lot of detail or a scholarly account. The occasional short interviews with academics with are interspersed throughout are effective, but probably could have been more frequent. I think there is too much emphasis on the emotional reality of Rome for most of it's citizens, and not quite enough on it's intellectual or engineering achievements. They are mentioned but not explored.
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41 of 41 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hail Ceasar! September 18, 2004
There is no shortage of material if you're looking to learn about the Roman Empire. It is one of the most studied topics in history, particularly when it comes to books and documentaries. It was an empire that Streched from Scotland to the Sahara - from Spain to Saudi Arabia. An empire uniting the meditaranian world into a solid political entity with one currency, one set of roads, consistantly well planned cities, ingenious architecture, a common set of laws, a common language, and protected by the mightiest military machine of the ancient and classical periods. Many of these aspects europe is only today striving to achieve once more with the EU.

Rome: Power & Glory is a fairly good documentary on this great empire to which much of today's government architecture and many of our laws owe thier heritage.

I found plenty to like about this series. It offers plenty of information across 6 aproximatley one hour episodes. The series is broken up into 6 volumes each of which covers a different aspect of Rome - the rise of the empire, the fall of the empire, the effect of Romanization across the empire, etc. Thus it's organized by topic rather than chronologically. Whether or not you like this system will depend on personal taste and on whether or not you plan to watch them all at once (unlikely unless you have 6 hours to kill). A positive aspect of this is that if you want to know about a specific topic concerning Rome you can pull out the volume relating to that and watch it. however if you really want a good understanding of the timeline of events, the growth, the hieght and the decline, then you may dislike this as it breaks things up. You'll talk about ceasar for example in different episodes at differing levels of depth and in different lights.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
it was great
Published 8 days ago by griff Wilder
4.0 out of 5 stars Lend Me Your Ears
This was an exceptional series. A greatly informative introduction to Ancient Rome. A decent production, commendable in patience, depiction and fairness. Read more
Published 17 days ago by Mad Zack
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 28 days ago by the mad one
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, excellent series
This set of documentaries is the best I've seen on ancient Rome, unlike the History Channel's Rise and Fall of Rome, which starts halfway through Roman history, doesn't talk much... Read more
Published 3 months ago by mr. big
3.0 out of 5 stars a bit repetitive
I was looking for a good dvd to share with 7th graders. This is Not it. The dvds focus on a the each. I think there are 5 total. Read more
Published 8 months ago by PVTeacher
4.0 out of 5 stars This documentary is good for the type and budget.
This six DVD set is a good and more than adequate study of the Roman Republic and Empire. Actor and voice artist,Peter Coyote does a creditable narration of the series. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Cancer 809
5.0 out of 5 stars Documentary Addict
Every time I watch this series, I see something new that I missed the viewing before. I highly encourage other "documentary addicts" to enjoy these, too!
Published 14 months ago by Elaine Childers
4.0 out of 5 stars Good documentary
Over the past two years I began studing Roman history and saw this documentary I was impressed with the abundance of information I can see myself watching this over again.
Published 14 months ago by Brian P. Webb
4.0 out of 5 stars Comprehensive Overview
Obviously no documentary can cover each and every aspect of a civilization that lastest as long as Rome, but it has chosen areas to cover that will give you the sense of the times,... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Jean Farquharson
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Informative and Enjoyable
It is a well-made series with a good overall summary regarding how Ancient Rome came into being, the reasons why it grew into an ancient superpower and what may have led to its own... Read more
Published 20 months ago by Charles Leonard
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