The Crusades: Crescent & The Cross [Blu-ray]
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All of this is presented by way of techniques that will be recognizable to History Channel buffs. They include modern-day historians, who re-trace the routes of the crusaders and examine the ancient sites where the action took place, as well as actors who portray characters of the time (chroniclers, knights, and others); numerous re-enactments, aided by excellent cinematography and skillful use of CGI (whereby a few dozen extras could be made to look like many thousands), vividly illustrate the battles and other events that took place during this roughly 200-year period. It's an absorbing, enlightening look at events that prove one thing above all: the more things change, the more they stay the same. --Sam Graham
Top Customer Reviews
Apart from this, the work itself is very interesting. I sat through the entire production and was never bored or antsy. Actually, I found myself marveling at what the History Channel has done here.
The program covers the First Crusade on the first disk. There is an examination of the causes of the initial conflict, examining cultural issues, Religious issues, European social and political unrest, Church influences, financial issues and points of conflict in the Moslem and Byzantine world. While Religion is acknowledged as the primary cause of the conflict, they also do not ignore key issues that lead to these conflicts. There is also discussion of Urban's "selling of the Crusades". Very well put together and an in depth examination of the events leading up to the First Crusade.
Included also are maps of the areas, modern day images of the cities today as well as places that have survived, and those that have not.
There is a lot of information to sift through here.Read more ›
The main point of the movie is that in the first Crusade the Christians "took back" Jerusalem from the Muslims. In the second Crusade, the muslims "took back" Jerusalem from the Christians. In the third Crusade the Christians tried unsuccessfully to retake Jerusalem back.
This documetary left out one key point: Jerusalem belonged to NEITHER the Christians NOR the Muslims. The city of Jerusalem was originally inhabited by the Jews, but that fact seems to have gotten lost somewhere.
Both Saladin and Richard I commited vicous crimes and they both murdered thousands of people. People seem to forget that Saladin probably murdered as many Knights Templar and Hospitalars as Richard did Muslims. They wer both cunning, vicious and excellent military Strategists. The documentary also states something that was probably true: After Years of Fighting each other they learned to respect each other as generals.
This movie tried to be as objective as possible but there was a lot of Christian-bashing here, not that it wasn't deserved. Tariq whatever his name was seemed to be on a Crusade to make the Christians look as evil as possible. He defends Saladin's actions, when the fact is that both generals committed many what we call today "war crimes". After saying all this, I still say it was very educational and enjoyable.
A much better introduction to the Crusades is given in "The Knights Templar" directed by James Wignall. It gives as much information about the Crusades with factual information and without the anti-Christian propaganda. Of course, one must read extensively to gain a reasonable understanding of history, and Piers Paul Read has written a good history of the Templars which helps to explain much about the Crusades.
The most interesting aspect of the "Crescent & the Cross" video is its use of modern media propaganda. It has fairly authentic costumes and sets for the reenactments, which makes it an attractive spectacle. It has vignettes of Christian and Muslim chroniclers tell the story. Each time we see the Christian chronicler he is dirty & disheveled, in a darkened setting and often without anyone around him. By contrast, the Muslim Chroniclers, sitting in colorful venues, have enthusiastic audiences listening to wonderful tales of Islamic heroism.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
If you are into Crusades and Templar Knights such as myself this is a good documentary.Published 4 months ago by Templar_Knight_4ever
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