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Battle 360 - Season One (History Channel) (Steelbook)

4.6 out of 5 stars 75 customer reviews

Additional DVD options Edition Discs
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(Oct 27, 2009)
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No enhanced packaging
$9.55 $8.10
(Aug 26, 2008)
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$19.99 $15.37

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

For nearly a decade, the legendary World War II aircraft carrier USS Enterprise held a pivotal place on the turbulent seas of war, engaging in some of the fiercest multi-front battles ever witnessed in modern combat. The only carrier to be front and center in every major sea conflict in the Pacific, the Enterprise and her crew s battles were marked by intense firepower, instinct and a 360-coordination between the ship, the destroyers, the aircraft above and the submarines below. In each of ten episodes, and using incredible CGI visualizations, BATTLE 360 follows the Enterprise and its men through another conflict of WWII as they fight off the enemy from the air, the sea and underwater.

DVD Features: Additional Footage

BATTLE 360: THE COMPLETE SEASON ONE includes all 10 original episodes on 4 DVDs:
Disc 1: Call to Duty / Vengeance at Midway / Jaws of the Enemy
Disc 2: Bloody Santa Cruz / Enterprise vs. Japan / The Grey Ghost
Disc 3: Hammer of Hell / D-Day in the Pacific
Disc 4: Battle of Leyte Gulf / The Empire's Last Stand / bonus material

It would be an understatement say that Battle 360: Season 1 has substantial appeal for World War II and naval history "enthusiasts." Considering the depth and thoroughness of the program and the sheer volume of data and information on hand--and with ten episodes, each more than 50 minutes long, there's very little that’s not covered--it’s likely that experts, fanatics, and obsessives will be well satisfied too. Using a combination of extensive computer-generated imagery (CGI), charts, graphics, statistics, file footage, photos, interviews with military men both past and present, and more, the program focuses on the Pacific Theater, where the United States and its allies battled Japan for the three and half years between Pearl Harbor in December 1941 and the end of the war in August 1945. At the center of virtually every battle during that span was the aircraft carrier USS Enterprise. Launched in 1936, this Yorktown class vessel, also known as "a fighting city of steel" and "the Lucky E" (for its ability to avoid major catastrophe, at least for the most part), carried 96 planes, a huge amount of weaponry, and a crew whose average was an astonishing 19 years old. Proceeding chronologically, the series details such major conflicts as Midway (when the U.S. disabled no less than four Japanese carriers), Guadalcanal (when the Enterprise suffered serious damage while helping to thwart the enemy’s plans to invade Australia), and Leyte Gulf ("the largest naval battle in the history of mankind"), finishing with the Japanese’s last-gasp use of kamikaze pilots to attack the U.S. fleet. Much of this is genuinely gripping, as the episodes provide literally minute-by-minute accounts of every encounter and the size, speed, function, and firepower of every vessel and aircraft on both sides. But there are notable drawbacks as well, starting with the fact that for all of its detail, we see almost nothing of the Enterprise’s interior or descriptions of daily life on board the enormous vessel. There’s also the issue of how much CGI you can take; although there is some film footage (which may or may not be from the specific skirmish being described), the computer work, while generally pretty convincing, is pervasive and rather like a video game without a controller. What’s more, each episode is kinetic almost to distraction, with a ceaseless flow of pounding music and sound effects, flashing graphics, and macho voice-over detailing the action. On the other hand, the reminiscences of those who were actually there are often very moving, not to mention a welcome surcease from the high-tech assault of the rest of the show. Bonus material is limited--a few additional scenes--but the steel box it all comes in is pretty cool. --Sam Graham

Special Features

  • 10 episodes on four discs
  • Additional scenes

Product Details

  • Actors: USS Enterprise
  • Directors: various
  • Format: Box set, Color, NTSC, Closed-captioned
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: A&E Home Video (New REleaset)
  • DVD Release Date: August 26, 2008
  • Run Time: 470 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (75 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0016OCTUI
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #128,374 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Battle 360 - Season One (History Channel) (Steelbook)" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I am thrilled to have this released so quickly onto DVD. It just ended on the History Channel, and three months is a good turnaround time.

I am a little biased in my anticipation, as my grandfather is one of the veteran "stars" of this series. (My last name is the same as his in case you are interested.) He appeared in seven of the ten episodes and, as one of the sailors who served on board Enterprise during the entire war, I couldn't be prouder of him!

Anyway, my intent was not to just review my grandfather's role in the show, as this is really a terrific series. There is a good blend of veterans and current "field experts" to give a variety of angles. Some of the heroics outlined truly give you chills, and the story of this amazing ship is phenomenal.

There is a ton of CGI, and this could perhaps be both the strength and weakness of the show. I know my grandfather grew weary of it and felt it was ridiculous, but at the same time it gave us re-enactments of some of the battles that would otherwise not be possible. Overall, the CGI gave a dimension to this series that really blows you out of the water (no pun intended.)

If you are a history buff, Navy buff, or WW2 buff, you should watch this show. You'll get a fantastic snapshot of a fantastic ship whose story is unequaled by any other American ship during WW2.
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Format: DVD
For content, this series has it all. This ten-episode epic on the history of the USS Enterprise (CV-6) during WWII is an insightful, all-encompassing look at one significant thread of the Pacific campaign. Like the Forrest Gump character, the Big E seems to be at nearly every famous and significant moment in this bloody conflict. Of note, each episode is about 55 minutes long, so you really get your money's worth.

As for the production, it is a mixed bag. The production in all areas is extremely similar to the History Channel's "Dogfights".

First, CGI is mixed liberally with historical footage, some of which may not be from the actual event referenced. If you are not a fan of using copious amounts of CGI to tell a story, you may not enjoy this. Note, the viewer cannot mistake the CGI for the real thing.

Second, interviews are conducted with both actual participants and modern "experts". The interviews with actual participants are priceless. The modern personnel are a bit less so.

Third, the sound production is very poor. An over-emphasis on sound effects constantly drowns out the dialog. This is especially offensive when it steps over the soft spoken veterans whose tales are so inspiring. Deafening explosions are interspersed with quiet dialog, making the audio frustrating and, at times, painful.

This series could have been a bit better with a little more attention to production values.

All in all, a worthy tribute to the gallant E and her heroic crews. I thank you for your service. May God Bless each and every one of you.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I loved the show and purchased the DVDs as soon as they were released and have thought long and hard about what kind of rating to give this series. I finally decided that, unlike some of the other reviewers, I simply could NOT give it 5 stars for one simple reason - am I the only one who got sick of, or even noticed, the use of some of the same graphics over and over again!?!?

For the time and care they spent/used correctly identifying the different classes of ships, both USN and IJN, and then generating the different graphics representing each different class of ship/type of plane, it is almost unforgivable that they often used the wrong one when it came time to produce each individual episode!

The most glaring example that comes to mind was the repeated use of the Hornet and Enterprise sailing together during the Doolittle raid sequence. I saw it several more times in later episodes, when every self-respecting Navy and/or military history buff knows that the Enterprise was the ONLY Yorktown class carrier left after Guadalcanal. But there it was in later episodes, those supposedly depicting 1944, another Yorktown class carrier sailing right next to "The Lucky E" - big as day!

Almost as bad was, during the battle of Savo island sequence, they showed the correct profile for the Vincennes (Chicago class) but, during the action scenes, they repeatedly used the graphic for the Indianapolis class, with its huge observation tower over the forward superstructure. Another glaring example, also during the first Guadalcanal episode was when they showed the same graphic for the Fleet carrier Shokaku and the Light carrier Ryujo (which didn't even have a super structure)!
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Format: DVD
I'll save space and say that I agree with the other posts that laud the show for it's quality and usefulness.

Unfortunately, the DVD set is seriously flawed. Amazon lists the aspect ration as 1.33:1 and technically that is correct. But, just as the History Channel did with the Dogfight series, the DVDs are actually letterboxed 16:9 matted into a 4:3 frame. Why the History Channel continues to use this outmoded format for their DVD releases is a mystery. Even cheap direct to video DVD releases are in anamorphic format. I can author a disc in anamorphic format on my home PC so it can't be that hard or expensive to do.

If you have an older home theater system, this set being letterboxed may not matter to you but if you have a HDTV with your DVD player connected via HDMI, it is likely that you will not be able to watch this in other than letterbox format without lowering the resolution of your system.

Come on, History Channel, move your DVD releases into the 21st Century.
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