Film and TV

The Pearl Harbor Collection – DVD – 8GPPs – Out now on Amazon.co.uk

by on 12/08/2012
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The surprise attack that changed the course of history. The real story behind Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor is an account of remarkable military daring, startling strategic blunders and toplevel political decisions that even today remain controversial. Now, through the unique perspective offered by the graphic recollections of combatants from both sides, experience the full force and fury of the most infamous surprise attack in military history.

PEARL HARBOR: 24 HOURS AFTER reveals the untold story of the little-known, yet pivotal, events that occurred on December 7, 1941, after President Roosevelt received news of the attack on Pearl Harbor. New evidence has been unearthed from the FDR Library that shows the true panic that gripped the White House and shook the nation following the attack.

• Cutting-edge CGI and interviews with the soldiers who survived the battle bring the true story of Pearl Harbor vividly to life.

• The story of one of WWII’s most ferocious attacks.

• Military History titles continue to perform consistently
for Go Entertain.

 

Straight to the point: An engrossing  and well balanced collection, bringing together the older style documentaries with the new wave and hitting you with some seriously thought provoking moments.

What we Like

The Reality of WarBoth Tora, Tora, Tora and 24 hours later gave me pause for thought and in part upset me slightly. In many history programs, generally the ones I watch, the human factor is not there and all emotion / reality is wiped out by diagrams of troop movements on a map.  It is far too easy to not recognise the mental and physical anguish these men and women went through (and are still going through) but the PHC did not shy from it. Combatants were interviewed, stories were told and tears were shed.

There were many poignant parts within the documentaries, from the frailty of FDR and his struggle with polio, showing him at his weakest but making him that more a inspiration for it; to  sailors talking about being trapped in the capsized Arizona, waiting for rescue, gambling if they would run out of air or drown first. But the one that got me the most was when they talked about commemoration days held with both Japanese and America veterans  and how some could forgive and forget and others just couldn’t let go.

For me it brought back memories of my grandfather, who had fought the Japanese in Burma, talking about how he couldn’t forgive them for what they did to POWs.  Back then, when I was a child, I couldn’t understand why you wouldn’t forgive someone, especially from a war so many years ago but I had the innocence of youth and could never understand, nor have to witness or deal with the horrors of war; may it always stay that way.

Balanced viewThere is one thing that really annoys me and that is unbalanced argument. I find it infuriating when someone tries to debate / make a point but doesn’t take into account “the other side of the coin.” History and life is complex and you need to respect it as so, by at least making an effort to understand other contributing factors .  Thankfully The Military History Channel  didn’t disappoint and both Japanese and Americans were interviewed ( in TTT) and it talked about the Japanese reason for going to war in the first place; a side of the story I didn’t know much about.

For the Americans the war started at Pearl Harbor but  that wasn’t the start of the war. Some documentaries, when focusing on the American theatres, tend to gloss over the other Allies role, and struggle, in the previous years but I was glad to see good attention made to FDRs relationship with Churchill and what it meant for the Americans to join the war.

Use of Archive footage maps and CG – I know these are prerequisites for history documentaries but all the same, I am a creature of habit and I enjoy watching them; even if the CG is a bit naff at times and archive footage doesn’t always tie in with what the narrator or expert is saying.

The second disc “24 hours after” went to great lengths in animating / colourising still pictures and adding effects that made the documentary look like a part of a film reel (someone was enjoying their Adobe After Effects) all very pleasing to the eye and kept me watching.

 I didn’t know that?! FDR was given Cocaine to clear up a sinus problem! Not a major point I admit but I found it really interesting.

 Value for money – for 20 quid you are getting a pretty good deal here. 3 Discs, over 4 hours of documentary goodness and a bonus disc on Guadalcanal…Nice!.  Considering the Gettysburg  DVD I reviewed a few weeks back was £15, it’s not bad at all.

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