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Wild China 1 Season 2008

Season 1
4.8 out of 5 stars (370) IMDb 8.6/10

With splendour, scale and romance, Wild China lifts the veil on the world's most enigmatic and magnificent country, delving into its vibrant habitats to reveal a land of unbelievable natural complexity. Journey across China from the glittering peaks of the Himalayas to the barren steppe, the sub-Arctic to the tropical islands, through deserts both searingly hot and mind-numbingly cold and see, in pioneering images, a dazzling array of mysterious, beautiful, wild and rare creatures.

Starring:
Bernard Hill

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Season 1

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1. Episode 1

The improbable egg-carton hills of Southern China seem to float in a sea of glistening rice paddies. This is a landscape full of surprises - next to peasants ploughing with buffaloes are rivers concealing dwarf alligators and giant salamanders, trained cormorants that catch fish for their masters, bats with unusual tastes, and monkeys that hide in caves. But this isn't a nature park - almost 300 million people live here, with a tradition of eating wildlife. So what forces have shaped this remarkable landscape and how do farmers and wild creatures manage to coexist among the rocks and the rice fields?

TV-PG CC Runtime: 49 minutes Release date: May 11, 2008
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2. Episode 2

Beneath billowing clouds, in China's far South West, rich jungles nestle below towering peaks. Jewel-coloured birds and ancient tribes share forested valleys where wild elephants still roam. These remote forests stretch into northern territories where normally deserts would be found. How do these forests exist? Perhaps the rugged landscape holds the key.

TV-PG CC Runtime: 49 minutes Release date: May 18, 2008
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3. Episode 3

The size of Western Europe, the Tibetan plateau covers a quarter of China. This vast windswept wilderness is one of the world's most remote places, defined by the glacier-strewn Himalayas. But this brutal region is home to incredible wildlife such as rare chiru, brown bear, wild yak, and even the highest predators on earth. There are more large creatures here than anywhere else in China. Tibet has a unique culture, defined by over one thousand years of Buddhism. This strange looking culture has nurtured remarkable beliefs. We will understand why this landscape and ancient culture is the life support system for much of the planet.

TV-PG CC Runtime: 48 minutes Release date: May 25, 2008
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4. Episode 4

China's heartland with its Han people is the centre of a 5,000-year-old civilization. This land contains the Great Wall, the Temple of Heaven, and Beijing's Olympic Stadium, and it's home to some of China's most charismatic creatures such as the giant panda, golden snub-nosed monkey, and golden takin. China has undergone significant development in the past 50 years, bringing many environmental problems. But the relationship of the Chinese to their environment and its creatures is in fact deep, complex, and extraordinary. We will explore this ancient relationship and understand what it means for the future of China.

TV-PG CC Runtime: 49 minutes Release date: June 1, 2008
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5. Episode 5

China's emperors built the Great Wall to keep their kingdom safe from the hostile lands to the North. Warrior nomads, bizarre wildlife and extreme weather conditions are found beyond the Wall. How does life survive the harsh deserts and frozen wastes? But northern China is also a place of great beauty, rich with history. The legendary Silk Road drew traders across the deserts in search of fabulous wealth. Nomadic tribes hunt with golden eagles and race horses. Adapt or die is the way to survive these extreme lands, which have shaped some of China's most colourful people and wildlife.

TV-PG CC Runtime: 48 minutes Release date: June 8, 2008
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6. Episode 6

From the eastern end of the Great Wall, China's coast spans 14,000 kilometres and more than 7,000 years of history. This is a place of huge contrasts: futuristic modern cities jostling traditional seaweed-thatched villages, ancient tea terraces and wild wetlands where rare animals stil survive. Here white dolphins, red-crowned cranes, deadly vipers, giant sturgeon and sabre-wielding monkeys struggle to eke out a living faced by competition from 700 million people; widespread pollution and over-fishing. How China is managing such conflicting pressures has lessons for us all.

TV-PG CC Runtime: 49 minutes Release date: June 15, 2008
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Product Details

Genres Documentary
Director Phil Chapman
Starring Bernard Hill
Season year 2008
Network BBC Earth
Purchase rights Stream instantly Details
Format Amazon Video (streaming online video)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By H. Le on August 3, 2008
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is one of the best documentaries about China today. It shows the diverse topography, flora, and fauna of the most geographically and ethnically diverse countries in the world. It also focuses on the little known and long-standing efforts by China to preserve it's environment, delicate ecological systems and unique animal life. The photography is breathtaking and the extra effort to show rarely seen areas of China are amazing. I have traveled all over China and this documentary shows the land as it truly is. For people who would like a glimpse into this remarkable land and it's people, this documentary is an excellent choice.
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Format: DVD
I have to agree with the previous reviewer that said: "It also focuses on the little known and long-standing efforts by China to preserve it's environment, delicate ecological systems and unique animal life." There's an example, in almost every episode, of conservation by the Chinese people, and this is not new. One of my favorites is the scene of Chinese people riding some distances on their bicycles with their birdcages strapped behind them, so they could hang all the little cages on trees so the birds could all talk to each other and not be lonely. Just recently, in the big earthquake (not this morning's, the one before) one of China's famous Giant Pandas 'Mau Mau' died when a wall collapsed on her. The keepers cried at her grave and she had a real funeral. While there is nothing quite so dramatic in this series, it is nice to see this side of the Chinese people at least alluded to.

Not mentioned in the last few reviews is the wonderful narration provided by Bernard Hill (captain of 'The Titanic'; King Theoden of Peter Jackson's 'The Lord of the Rings'). I was happy to see his wonderful voice put to such good use, and he even gets to keep his British accent!
11 Comments 69 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: DVD
This is truly an incredible documentary. I knew that there were both marvelous animals and picturesque natural beauty in China, but never like this. Each episode [8 in total, viewing time of 377 minutes]makes you gape in awe at both the vastly diverse environments, animals and human tribes that make China their home.
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Format: Blu-ray
This by the far the best documentary for your money,23 dollars that has 6 hours of documentary! might not rival to planet earth in term of depth or rival gapagos picture quality, but anyway this is great documentary regardness, this is not your typical china documentary, you won't find forbidden city or other public well know sight, but isntead this more focus at the nature beauty landscape and landmark of China, which only native chinese know, example many of the scene of the wild china are never show in tv anywhere especially not in the west, only tourism will goes to those place, this mean it actualyl gave you a trip to china really, is that good. Also this one has large coverage of the popular china icon animal panda, which i sure please many, included coverage of tibet, most people think tibet as a religion and very harz place to live , but is far more than that and is very important for the survival of human kind. This does coverage of daily peopel lives but is balance with equal animal and nature coverage.
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Format: Blu-ray
July 16th, 2008:
This series has just recently been shown on CBC in HD here in Canada. I only watched 2 of the 7 part series due to schedule conflict. What can I say, BBC has done it again after their masterpiece Planet Earth. It portraits the natural beauty, the special animal species, and the people who live in harmonization, in various parts of China. Some of the scenes, according to the narrative, are the first time being shot. From the 2 episodes I watched, Wild China has some of the most stunning images and the picture quality is superb. I was so thrilled to see most of the things I have never seen either in person or on TV/Moive, even though I was originally from that country.
Now I am going to buy it off Amazon and will put it along side of Planet Earth as my permanent collection.

September 13th. 2008:
Regrettably, I have to agree with some of the reviewers that the Blu-ray production is a letdown! Comparing to the original TV series I saw, the color is not as vivid, the image drifts in and out of focus leaving one wonders whether it is really HD. And the voice of narrative is boring, I like the CBC version much better with Canadian TV host/environmentalist David Suzuki. It is very disappointing that such an amazing HD program came out to blu-ray like this.

I therefore downgraded my original rating from 5 to 3.
6 Comments 54 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Very impressive, covers many aspects of China's diverse scenery, and informs the viewer in detail. Missing is the usual commentary from David Attenborough that had accompanied many previous nature shows. The new chap does a good job though.

I'd give this 4.5 stars if I could, it loses half a star for video quality. I feel there are a number of scenes that are a little fuzzy or soft/out of focus compared to Life on Earth and Galapagos. Other than that another classic, worth buying as you'll want to watch more than once.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
I had originally come across some of these episodes on the Travel Channel, right before the Beijing Olympics. Once I saw a couple of the episodes, I knew I had to get the DVD set. It was just jaw-dropping, breath-takingly beautiful. The scenery is straight out of the traditional Chinese 'mountain-water' paintings, the animals were amazing, and the overall presentation was just classy-ly done. And to those who would love to have Chinese friends and family watch and enjoy, there are indeed traditional Chinese subtitles. I can safely say this is worth every penny.
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