DVD Review: PARIS: THE GREAT SAGA (MHz)

by Dale Reynolds on December 22, 2017

in CD-DVD

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OOH-LA-LA

Five thousand years of Parisian history is beautifully explored in this two-disc French-produced journey with English narration. The City of Light was originally a small Gallo-Roman village next to the river Seine and near the river Marne, named Lutetia-Parisorum after the tribe known as the Gallic Parisii, and was renamed Paris in 360 CE by its natives.

Using five actors in a hot-air balloon, with breath-taking aerial shots of Paris and CGI recreations of the earliest city and its growth, the history is easily digested and, if one has ever visited (highly encouraged), the changes in the City are as rewarding as they are memorable, both fascinating and educational.

Director Xavier Lefebvre, using a script by Alaine Zenou & Carlo de Boutiny, has his actors – three adults and two young teens – give aural histories of the various parts of the historic sites, including Bonaparte’s Hôpital de Invalides, the Tour Eiffel, the Pompidou Center, and other living symbols of its history, charting the city’s growth from agriculture to mercantilism, then to the Internet, quickly laid out for us.

The cinematography of Jéróme Krumenacker and the production design of Stéphanie Bertrand add enormously to the look of the five hours, which includes four different episodes of Paris: “Changes”, “Kings”, “Revolutions”, and “Modernity.” This is definitely for the connoisseur of all things French: its ideas, actions, wines and culture.

photos courtesy of MHz Networks

Paris:  The Great Saga
MHz Releasing
2012 | 2-disc DVD (released 2017) | 301 minutes | not rated
available on Amazon or Streaming on MHz Choice

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