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Walking With Cavemen (2003)

Robert Winston , Christian Bradley  |  NR |  DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)

Price: $19.07 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Product Details

  • Actors: Robert Winston, Christian Bradley, Alex Palmer, Oliver Parham, David Rubin
  • Producers: Bill Latka, Pierre de Lespinois, Steven Manuel
  • Format: Widescreen, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: BBC Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: June 17, 2003
  • Run Time: 100 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00008AOWQ
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #126,326 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Walking With Cavemen" on IMDb

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Editorial Reviews

Breaking the mold of previous "Walking with" offerings, the BBC's Walking with Cavemen sees Professor Robert Winston follow in the footsteps of ancient man in a series that traces the history of humanity from bipedal ape-men (Australopithecus Aphaeresis) to the awakening of the human mind's potential with Homo Erectus. Over four fascinating half-hour installments, Wilson presents an accessible and populist, but still suitably anthropological study on how apes became human and the traits that we inherited from our earliest ancestors.

Unlike Dinosaurs and Prehistoric Beasts, Cavemen combines CGI with actors to portray the characters in the story of man. Initially this seems to make it far less technically impressive than the earlier programs--memories of Stanley Kubrick's 2001 are inevitable--but fortunately the acting is superb and the viewer soon forgets that these are people in monkey suits. The series also makes use of a special effect called "deep time-lapse", which shows in a matter of dramatic seconds the thousands of years of geological changes that sped up our ancestors' evolution. Wilson himself takes part in the action as if he is a modern-day naturalist following lions across the Serengeti rather than creatures long extinct. This approach makes for a more immediate as well as poignant interpretation of history: the result is an enlightening and moving tribute to the human journey. --Kristen Bowditch

Product Description

How did our ancestors come to invent language, to shape the world with tools, to create art, and to imagine the future? The award-winning team behind Walking with Dinosaurs and Walking with Prehistoric Beasts brings you this missing link in the story of life on our planet. Follow your family tree all the way back -- to Australopithicus afarensis, the first of our primate ancestors to stand on two legs. See the first sparks of reason as early humans learn to adapt in an ever-changing world. Trace the evolution of such basic human traits as compassion, friendship and love. Watch as we bury our dead for the first time. Then make your way to ice-age Europe, with the Neanderthals who fight to hang on to their domination of the planet...but are forced to concede it to Homo Sapiens.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
42 of 43 people found the following review helpful
I hate to criticize the Discovery Channel, but what programming executive ape decided they needed to dumb-down and Americanize this excellent documentary? The original BBC version, which is what you get here,is vastly superior to the Discovery Channel broadcast of June 15th, 2003. The different vignettes are longer, better narrated (by a British narrator, not Alec Baldwin) and have a real cinematic kind of feeling almost totally missing from the rushed along, tightly edited version we saw on tv. In fact, after viewing this DVD, the Discovery broadcast seems like a mere infomercial for this longer, better version. If you liked what you saw on Discovery, I highly recommend this DVD. It's like watching WWC again for the first time.
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42 of 45 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Walking into Humanity's pre History... March 30, 2003
By Kali
I am a fan of Professor Robert Winston and his "Walking with..." series of documentaries. This is in the process of being shown on TV at this moment in the UK and all I can say it is better than I expected. Using real actors and actresses, amazing make-up and special effects, Professor Winston takes us through the lives and times of our remote caveman ancestors, starting with "Lucy" who was more ape than human and ending at a pathway that would eventually lead to us, Homo Sapiens.
It is a fascinating insight to what might have been. Of course a lot of what you will see on this DVD is supposition, mixed in with fact, fiction and a healthy dose of imagination. We will never really know the whole truth of our Caveman ancestors as we only have bones, and cave paintings to rely on but to a certain extent this is enough and Professor Winston does try to give a plausible explanation as to how and why the human race left the trees and evolved into the people we are today.
There are four episodes, First Ancestors, Blood Brothers, Savage Family and finally, The Survivors and each half hour includes a "time-lapse" so that we can rush through pre-history to the next journey of our evolving ancestors.
Professor Winston is a pragmatic narrator who is able to put across a point without being condescending to the watcher, his humour is subtle and his understanding of the human mind is quite staggering. Roll on the next "Walking with..." series; I wonder what it will be called? "Walking with Astronauts?"
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42 of 46 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Our ancestors - the way you've never seen them. December 15, 2003
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
Ever wonder what your ancestors were like 100 years ago? Or perhaps wonder what your geneological tree looked like in the middle ages? Ever ponder what your forefathers were doing back in the time of the Greeks & Romans of a few thousand years ago? Or, back even further, what they were like a few million years ago?
Well, it is the latter epoch that is covered by this DVD. It is an overview of human evolution, 7 million years in the making. It takes us from the dawn on man all the way up to about 140,000 years go; long time ago for us, but mere seconds ago on a cosmic timescale.
Along the way the documentary displays diverse humanoids, some of whom make it, some of whom don't. It also demonstrates their interaction with long-extinct species of animals that were around the same time they walked the earth.
I must caution that the DVD pulls no punches when it comes to showing the animalistic traits of primitive man. The rites of courtship, hunting, eating and gutting of animals are all shown with uncompromisingly graphic demonstrations. I would not recommend this video for young videos, nor would I suggest that anyone watch it while eating. Some of it is not the most appetizing of images in the world.
That said, it is quite remarkable to identify just how much we modern humans have in common with these early products of evolution. If we look closely, we will see a lot of ourselves in them.
The late astronomer Carl Sagan once remarked that, if the history of the universe were shrunk to the scale of a calendar year, all of humanity exists would exist in the last 10 seconds of that year. This scientific expose is a glimpse into those 10 seconds. As Stephen J. Gould once said, "We stood up first and got smart later." Here is OUR story of how our ancestors stood up, got smart and began their long, slow and tenuous march towards civilization.
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30 of 32 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Eye Opener November 13, 2003
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
I've read the negative comments on this installment of the "Walking With" series and can only partially agree with them. The production could have been better, but I think we have become spoiled by watching computer generated animals done extremely well and realistic. This version contains many human actors and thus the whole "feel" of the production is different.
Also, not everything produced on Discovery is meant for children. There are still many, many adults who wish to learn about the past and appreciate a more academic presentation then would occur if a show such as this were aimed at a more younger audience. I guess it is taken for granted by a lot of the media that once one becomes an adult, all that matters are sports competitions and sitcoms. This series thus was extremely refreshing to watch.
That being said, I came away from watching "Cavemen" with a newfound respect for our ancestors. All too often they have been portrayed as comical dimwits, running around with clubs and dragging women by their hair. Now I realize this is actually very disrespectful and totally inappropriate. These very ancient ancestors managed to learn to survive some of the worst environmental conditions imaginable, grew more creative over time and with this creativity laid the foundations of modern civilization. As stated in the series, the discovery of fire not only chased away the denizens of the night, but also provided an opportunity for homo sapiens to learn to create,to reflect, become more emotional creatures and allow for the development of higher brain functions.
Neanderthals especially have had to bear the brunt of many a joke. Although their species did not survive, they can hardly be termed a failure.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 1 month ago by Brian Holmes
3.0 out of 5 stars an interesting film
It is an interesting point of view human kind. I don't believe this evolution theory. Sorry I am a intelligent design believer. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Ronafish79
3.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining, largely not scientific, inappropriate for children
This review is for "Walking with Cavemen" DVD. I would like to give this four stars for adults, one star for children and teenagers. So I settled on three stars. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Daniel A Goldman
5.0 out of 5 stars Appropriate for an Advanced High School Biology Class
This video is unintentionally ridiculous but I like showing it to my advanced (AP) biology classes as a primate evolution video. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Jones
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it
Really loved this series an would recommend it to anyone into learning more about the evolution of us as humans. Read more
Published 5 months ago by DigitalFiz
5.0 out of 5 stars Where are we coming from
Now a good estimation for our beginning on this planet. I enjoyed it every minutes. Very well done with good actors.
Published 6 months ago by Marc Renaud
3.0 out of 5 stars I don't know
It was interesting as a possible version of human evolution. I happen not to be a creationist but I really had to keep reminding my son this is not truth; it's the best guess we... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Lucky Mom
5.0 out of 5 stars very good docs
very informative, took physical anthropology class yrs ago in college pretty consistent. so guys, no racism. we all are from one group or family to begin with.
Published 10 months ago by Super Critique
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic
Watched this with my daughter so that she cold learn some stuff for her schooling, and ended up learning a good deal myself. Wonderfully done. Buy the whole series.
Published 11 months ago by Nic
5.0 out of 5 stars Great documentary.
This explains the evolution and spread of man from ape-like creatures in Africa to Neanderthals and Homo Erectus. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Mr. Leoplurodon
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