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The Vatican Museums (2006)

- , Edizioni Musei Vaticani , Vatican City State  |  NR |  DVD
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: -
  • Directors: Edizioni Musei Vaticani, Vatican City State
  • Format: Multiple Formats, 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: 3
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Janson Media
  • DVD Release Date: October 1, 2002
  • Run Time: 410 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000GYI3HM
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #163,628 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features


Editorial Reviews


This three-disc set (five chapters per disc) introduces the Vatican Museums, discusses the origins of Christian art, and views Vatican City artwork (Greek, Roman, Egyptian, and Etruscan). The Sistine Chapel, Raphael rooms, Loggia, Ethnological Museum, Apostolic Palace, Historical Museum at St. John Lateran, and Great Basilica are among the toured sites. An overview of the respective museum accompanies information on the various artworks found within each… the visual transitions and music choices are exceptional, and the extensive coverage offers viewers an important visual record of extraordinary artworks. Suggested for large public library art history and travel collections. --Booklist

Although a visit to Vatican City would be a wonderful experience, this ambitious and handsomely packaged 8-volume roam through the city s museums and buildings is a) much less expensive than a real trip, b) offers a guided tour, and c) uses supporting contextual footage not found in your Fodor (print) handbook. We watched the sixth volume, The Ethnological Museum & The Picture Gallery, which featured a host of well-known (and lesser known) artworks chronicling, in essence, the pictorial history of Christianity, as well as a fascinating overview of religion in non-European cultures (examining death rites, conceptions of deities, and worship habits). As the program traces the early seeds of Christianity in these colonized countries, the artistic artifacts shown (initially, copies of European Christian symbolism) gradually give way to indigenous interpretations of Christianity. In one notable and symbolically complex example, we see a beautifully carved crucifix which depicts Christ bound to a cross comprised of African slaves. A thought-provoking series, this is sure to be quite popular in both academic and general collections. Three Stars. --Video Librarian

This eight volume series showcases Roman, Etruscan, Greek, and Egyptian art in the various Vatican museums; the origins of Christian art and the Sistine Chapel; the Raphael Rooms. the Loggia and the Historical Museum at St.John Lateran; the Ethnological Museum and the Picture Gallery; the collection of modern religious art and the Apostolic Palace; and the Vatican City itself, including the Great Basilica. …a tour-de-force that will inform and dazzle the viewer. …especially recommended as a superb memorial fund acquisition for school or public library video collections. --Wisconsin Bookwatch

Product Description

Originally produced in 1997 on the threshold of the Third Millennium of the Christian Era, and in celebration of the Jubilee of the Year of Our Lord 2000, THE VATICAN MUSEUMS was the culmination of three years of research and filming, the collaboration of thirty-two scholars and historians from around the world, a crew of forty directors of photography, operators, and lighting technicians, state-of-the-art digital cinematography, lighting, animation, and computerized editing, and the work of a famous composer with original performances by master musicians.

Now available on DVD for the first time, this historic three-disc collection features seven hours of magnificent documentary film that illuminates and chronicles the great journey of the human spirit. Here then is the world's most spectacular and sacred repository of art, history, and faith.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
31 of 31 people found the following review helpful

"The birth of the Vatican Museums is usually dated to the accession of Julius II to the Papal throne, though as private treasures of a prince, this first Vatican collection was rather different in nature."

The above are the printed words that begins this impressive set of DVDs that together have one purpose: to allow the viewer to see what's inside one of the world's most spectacular museums by taking him/her on a tour of each museum's highlights.

This documentary surveys the Vatican's artistic treasures through stunning location footage (and even archival footage!) with narration (accompanied by beautiful background music throughout that has the translated lyrics of Michelangelo).

The viewer feels as if he/she is walking through each museum's halls or flying over the outside buildings. The key point here is that the camera is always moving thus avoiding the static and boring feel of just looking at works of art that are just sitting there.

The narrator explains, amongst other things, the history of the artworks, how they came to be in a particular museum, and information is even given about the construction of each museum.

The variety of what's presented was, at least for me, overwhelming. The viewer will see and hear about such things as furniture, tapestries, costumes, and armour, as well as sculptures, busts, statues, paintings, portraits, mosaics, friezes, frescoes, artifacts, and much more.

The interior photography of buildings is exquisite and aerial photography that captures the unique architecture of the exterior of buildings is quite impressive.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Vatican Museums January 13, 2007
I bought the DVD of "The Vatican Museums" as preparation to my visit there. I thought that I will learn from it, and be able to make a tour by myself without connection to a group and a guide. After my visit the DVD will remained me of all the things that I saw there.

The DVD is above all expectations. It show everything, and even details, and the explanation is excellent. Even people who doesn't familiar with all the history facts can learn and have a profound understanding of the Vatican and the people who contribute to its glory.

Although English is not my native tongue I could understand everything.

I recommend it to everybody, those who wants to visit the Vatican, or to be reminding of their visit, or those who want to learn and know what it's all about.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vatican Museums December 21, 2008
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Well, what can I say. The photography was excellent. The color brilliant. The research that went into this was well done and thorough. The editing too was well done. The way that the history of not only the church but western civilization was protrayed was equally superb.

This copy that I purchased is for a Christmas gift. My family liked it so much that we wanted to give it as a gift to a special person. All in all a job well done.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Vatican November 16, 2008
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
One of the best 3 set CDs I have ever purchased. If you can never get to Rome this 3 CD set will let you see almost everything.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Vatican and Its Museums July 6, 2013
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I bought this sight unseen, so I am thrilled that in addition to "museums" per se, there are sections on such as Vatican City, the Apostolic Palace, St Peter's, and the Sistine Chapel (By the way, if you Google "Vatican virtual Sistine Chapel," you will be led to a magnificent online encounter!). On the other hand, it seems necessary to overlook some odd editing, such as apparent mixups in the sections on Vatican City and St Peter's.

In my one trip to the Vatican, I was surprised to find that the museums contain an abundance of non Christian art. I also felt confused that some inclusions seemed to lack rhyme and reason. I look forward to learning more, as I go through other sections of this beautiful three DVD set.
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