SRP $139.95 1.33:1 2.0 Stereo A&E

A&E has released the History Channel’s “CENTURY OF WARFARE” on dvd in an elaborate boxed set format.  All 26 episodes are here, covering practically every battle of note from pre-WW1 through the Gulf War, with great depth and excellent archival footage.  The only drawback is that the series lacks the sense of reflection and insight given by novelists and historians, so captivating in series such as “THE CIVIL WAR.”   Still, the series and the way it’s been laid out on dvd here, offers history and warfare enthusiasts the great benefit of being able to jump to specific historical battles, and have its relevant information displayed in a direct, almost gritty format.

The original full frame 1.33:1 aspect ratio is intact.  Because the series is comprised of so many varieties of footage, it also varies in quality from scene to scene.  At times, the image is extremely sharp, only to appear grainy or compressed a few minutes later. Still, the overall depth achieved here more than makes up for the varying image quality.

A Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround mix is offered, however, save for the intermittent music, there’s virtually no surround elements. Still, the dialogue-driven program is always intelligible and free from distortion.