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on February 7, 2013
"Life" David Attenborough Version, Bluray:

This one is truly amazing, a masterpiece. People always compare between "Planet Earth" (which also has close to a 5 star rating) and "Life". It is actually difficult to compare between "Planet Earth" and this one, but my vote goes to "Life". Planet Earth is also an excellent series but it moves too fast between one continent to another without going into the details. To sum up "Planet Earth is Jack of all Trades but Master of None". But, then again it is my personal opinion. I have both the series and they both are truly amazing. Great work from BBC.

Coming back to "Life", please please buy the David Attenborough version. Trust me I have both versions and it is a total different experience listening to Attenborough version. Oprah narration is not very bad, but it is meant for kids- they will love it and it is cheaper too. If you don't want it for your kids and are seriously looking for some knowledge, go for the Attenborough version. It is deep and totally worth the extra money. I don't hate Oprah, but then I never expected anything great from her. It is totally Discovery's fault. Discovery already has spoiled many such series with narration from actors. I bet USA has a lot of good naturalist and scientists, why not use them. "Please Discovery, leave science for scientists".
Also, Attenborough version is about 100 min longer and is entirely in 1080p (even the special features are in high definition) whereas the Discovery-Oprah version is in 1080i and no high definition for special features.

Another thing, Life by David Attenborough is much cheaper in United Kingdom (at least when I first wrote the review), but do not buy it from there. I already did this mistake but amazon.uk was kind enough to refund my money. It has nothing to do with the region coding, but the UK version is coded in 50i or 50Hz which will not play in most of the US bluray players (US players need 60Hz coding). This thing is not mentioned anywhere on the product but their are 2 ways to know it without opening the bluray package- First, US version has a thicker book case as compared to blue plastic case for the UK version. Second, US version has a picture of Flamingos in the back cover and the UK version has a red frog.

Enjoy Life :)
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on April 22, 2017
The camerawork is very good, but there is less sustained footage of a single situation than in BBC nature documentaries. Also, I don't like Oprah Winfrey's narration. It's stiff and lacks the feeling of commitment to the material that comes with a real scientist like David Attenborough.
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on June 21, 2016
If you own a Bluray player, you should own Life. From the makers of Planet Earth, this is similar in style and format, but the minutiae of life is really what makes this series beautifully done. Small moments, things literally never seen before on film, are captured for future generations in premium high def for those generations who will not be as lucky to experience them in the natural world. The narration by David Attenborough (the best narrator of wildlife documentaries bar none) is insightful and informative without being dull, and the camera work is just amazing. This series is what the high-definition world was made for. An excellent investment, and a remarkable accomplishment.
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on May 10, 2014
When I can't sleep, or if I'm sick, or otherwise need to kill some "quiet time" I watch an episode or two of the BBC Earth series "Life." Filmed in high definition, played back on Blu-ray, it's non-stop astonishment.

The discs include a short "making of" documentary of each episode, which is even more astonishing than the content. The months, sometimes years (!) spent setting up particular shots or scenes, the incredible danger and inhospitable environments, the luck both bad- and good- endured by the crews.

David Attenborough narrates. Unlike many documentaries, he is perfectly understandable (on headphones) without subtitles (though they are available).

The music is varied and tasteful and contributes. Sound design -- added bubbles or rustling noises or animal cries -- are appropriate and nicely dubbed in stereo. Even subtle humor sometimes is snuck in: the segment on Venus Flytraps has tiny burps dubbed in as the flowers reopen after a kill.

Extensive use of time lapse photography and slow motion photography illuminate trends and action impossible to discern in normal time.

Pacing is fast, almost too fast sometimes, with interesting shots and story lines rushing by as fast as you can absorb them.

And of course the visuals -- ah, to die for.

It doesn't get any better than this.
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on October 5, 2013
What an undertaking. I cannot imagine how they got some of these scenes. Things no motivated tourist, who spent years visiting each one of these remote locations, would ever get to see. It requires years, a team of hundreds, spanned out all over the globe, and a BIG budget, to pull this off. Being able to get a copy of the edited end product of all that for less than $100 is incredible. Anyone who loves our globe and its many life forms, or great footage, or who has kids and loves them, should buy this. Hope this helps. Trey
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on April 12, 2017
Love this!!!! Very soothing and beautifully presented.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon September 30, 2010
I bought this as a gift for a friend who recently bought a 52" and needed a nature documentary to show off her home theater.

She agreed that David Attenborough's voice is more tailored to this genre of documentary ... no offence Oprah.

The 1080p HD truly showcases the artistic camera work that went into this series. Planet Earth is a great visual production - however, the Life series can stand up proudly next to it.

If you are now building a blu-ray nature documentary library, then this Life blu-ray must be #1 on your list!

5 STARS! ... I wish I could have given it a higher accolade - it's that fantastic!!! :)
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on February 21, 2017
Picked this up for a deal of the day for $7, worth every penny! But, in all honesty, this is a great set of videos, we watch them often as a family and we enjoy them every time.
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on May 21, 2015
We are almost finished with the life serise. We have watched the blue planet and planet earth which are also by BBC. The life series has not disappointed. This series features new animals than the planet earth series and it goes into more depth on many of the animals. Every video we are in awe at some of the shots they get with the camera on some of the animals. Absolutely breath taking.
Since this series does go into more detail there are some parts that can be a bit heart renching. Also there are parts that show the animal mating ritual. May make for some interesting questions in kids.
In all this series has been fantastic. It is one that i know we will watch over and over and we will catch something new every time.
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As someone who climbed a mountain or two and dived into some unspeakably beautiful oceanic worlds, watched dolphins at play in their own habitat and spent a few days walking through what we used to call 'jungles' I know that no television experience can possibly replace actually being there. I also know that no human on Earth can possibly be to all the places the BBC crews covered in these series. And, thanks to their hard work, passion and BBC's equipping with the latest in HD gear, what came out is as close to 'being there' as today's technology allows it.

'Life' kept me and the rest of the family captivated often in awe for the four days we spent watching the series, limiting ourselves to one disc per evening to allow ourselves sufficient time to talk about what we were watching and to go back from time to time and replay some of the more stunning takes. I'm not going to say what 'Life' is about because it's not a story. The series was produced by a number of BBC crews who went all over the world to capture so that they could show the rest of us some of the more extreme, more beautiful, more striking and lesser known ways life forms on our Earth act in order to survive as individuals or as species, raise and take care of their offspring, hunt for prey, hide from predators, fight and sometimes cooperate in order to stay alive.

Except for the first episode which is a summary of what the rest of the series is about to present, each individual episode of 'Life' covers one specific theme, usually a broad class of life forms - birds, mammals - showing their specific characteristic, adaptations, some of their lesser known forms and behaviors and so forth. The last few minutes of each episode breaks the spell to some degree by showing us what the crew had to do in order to be able to show us the beautiful images we just watched.

This is what 'Life' presents:

DISC ONE:
- Challenges of Life
- Reptiles and Amphibians
- Mammals

DISC TWO:
- Fish
- Birds

DISC THREE
- Insects
- Hunters and Hunted

DISC FOUR
- Creatures of the Deep
- Plants
- Primates

'Life' does not cover everything but what is presented is beautiful and brilliant and it is so because the crews sometimes spent weeks and sometimes expose themselves to great risks just to capture some extraordinary few minutes and sometimes few seconds of 'never seen before' footage. Try to imagine diving without oxygen tanks in the middle of several 40-ton male whales engaged engaged in fight to the death for the right to mate, or spending three weeks following half a dozen hungry Komodo Dragons following a buffalo they've poisoned and waiting for it to die, or covering a lions vs. hyenas war. It's all awesome and informative.

Children will learn from watching this but I suggest that the younger ones don't watch it alone because life keeps itself going through an endless cycle of feeding which necessarily involves death. Yes, in many instances we see how well adapted organisms escape their predators but everyone needs to eat and not all the actors in these series are vegetarians. It would probably help if parents were around when seals feast on penguins or when the lovely killer whales are trying to turn a frightened seal into lunch.

Life shows extraordinary adaptations, the length to which some parents sacrifice to ensure that their offspring have a chance at their own life and the extreme risks the young adults take for a chance of becoming parents themselves. It's about feeding, surviving, seeking the next meal, taking care of the young and sometimes relaxing and having a little fun. It's fascinating, colorful, action-packed, incredibly beautiful and it's for almost everyone.

--
>> Brush your teeth, it's the law! <<
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