The packaging of this historical drama studiously ignores mentioning how old it is: it dates from 1982, and it looks and sounds like it. The tale itself is solid Masterpiece Theater stuff: two best mates (Scott Burgess and Scott McGregor: Five Mile Creek) go off to fight in the Great War from their home in rural Australia, and predictable — and predictably touching — tragedy and wartime horror ensue. The pacing is slow to the point of tediousness, reflecting a nearly thirty-year-old approach to the TV miniseries, but the real issue is the horrible sound, full of a loud, distracting hissing and frequent dropouts, and the scratchy video, marred by numerous blips and spots of dirt. Why this should-be elegant set — which also is barren of any extras — was not cleaned up and remastered for its first DVD release is a mystery, but it does point out how spoiled we’ve all become by the usually pristine presentation of DVD. Longtime fans who’ve been waiting patiently for a home version of this mini will be happy, but it’s hard to imagine that many others will.
(Technorati tags: 1915)