Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Arriving on Blu-Ray and DVD, Dec. 4th -- World Without End, an 8-Part MiniSeries (Review)

Ken Follett's World Without End 

Debuting on Blu-ray and DVD December 4th
In-Depth Featurette: The Making of Ken Follett’s World Without End

"Ken Follett takes viewers back to his fictitious town of Kingsbridge, but 200 years later and with all new characters for fans to fall in love with. Experience the romance, tragedy and victory in the $46 million, eight-hour epic miniseries WORLD WITHOUT END, which aired on ReelzChannel on October 17th and debuts on 2-Disc Blu-ray and 2-Disc DVD December 4th from Sony Pictures Home Entertainment. Best-selling Welsh author Ken Follett has sold more than 130 million copies of his books worldwide.  Eye of the Needle, Key To Rebecca, On Wings of Eagles and The Pillars of the Earth are among his numerous, critically acclaimed suspense and historical novels that have been adapted into films and TV mini-series, capturing top ratings, as well as Emmy Awards® and Golden Globe® nominations.

The hit miniseries from Tandem Communications and Ridley & Tony Scott’s Scott Free Films stars an internationally acclaimed cast including two-time Emmy Award® winner Cynthia Nixon (Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series, “Sex in the City,” 2004; Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series, “Law & Order: Special Victims Unit,” 2008), two-time Academy Award® nominee Miranda Richardson (Best Supporting Actress, Damage, 1992; Best Actress, Tom & Viv, 1994), Ben Chaplin (The Thin Red Line, Murder by Numbers), Oliver Jackson-Cohen (Faster, Going the Distance), Academy Award® nominee Peter Firth (Best Supporting Actor, Equus, 1977), Charlotte Riley (Easy Virtue), Rupert Evans (Hellboy), and Sarah Gadon (Cosmopolis).

In WORLD WITHOUT END, times are tougher than ever in England as the country is on the brink of war with France and the citizens are facing The Plague that will eventually decimate one-third of its population.  A feisty young woman (Riley) inspires her medieval town to confront the most powerful forces of her time -- namely the Church and the Crown -- as they fight to save their town from ruin, and ultimately usher in a new era of freedom, innovation and enlightenment.

The Blu-ray and DVD also include a behind-the-scenes featurette, “The Making of Ken Follett’s World Without End,” providing a look at the making of the film."


"England is on the brink of a devastating war with France that will last over a hundred years, and The Bubonic Plague, which will wipe out a third of Europe’s population before it is done, is spreading. Caris (Riley), a visionary young woman, struggles to rise above the suffering and oppression in order to lead her people out of the Dark Ages. With her lover, Merthin (Tom Weston-Jones), she builds a community in Kingsbridge, England that stands up to the church and the crown. Together, they unearth a dangerous secret and must fight to save their town from ruin, ultimately ushering in a new era of freedom, innovation and enlightenment.

Based on the novel by Ken Follett, WORLD WITHOUT END was directed by Michael Caton-Jones from a script by John Pielmeier. Rola Bauer, David W. Zucker, Tim Halkin, Jonas Bauer, John Weber, Ridley Scott and Tony Scott served as executive producers.

The miniseries has a running time of 388 minutes and is not rated."

Visit Sony Home Entertainment on the Web at www.SonyPictures.com.

“Academy Award®” and “Oscar®” are the registered trademarks and service marks of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.  Emmy® is the trademark property of NATAS/ATAS.

My Thoughts:

When I first started hearing about this mini-series coming to the ReelzChannel last month, my first thought was to call the cable company and add this channel to my lineup, as we didn't have it. But, then, I thought, "When would I be able to sit through the mini series, when the girls can't stay on a sleep schedule?"  So, I opted not to add the channel, and was glad that I did, as last month the girls were sick most of the month with nasty head colds, and all we watched on television was cartoons.  :-)

Then, I was sent a press release letting me know that this mini-series would be arriving on DVD and Blu-Ray on Dec. 4th.  I did a happy dance in the kitchen as I was reading this release, as I thought I would have to wait months before it would arrive on DVD or Blu-Ray.  I guess it was like Christmas come early.  :-)  And, then a few days before Thanksgiving, I received this and Hope Springs (review to follow), and couldn't wait to watch.  With my parents here, I would be able to sneek in a few hours of me time while they played with the girls.  And, I did just that.  As they played with the girls in the AM each morning, I would watch a portion of the mini-series.  

Over the course of last week, I was able to watch the entire 8 hr. miniseries, which included a star-studded cast. This miniseries is an adaption of Ken Follett's international best selling novel.  Set in 14th century England, "World Without End" picks up where "The Pillars of the Earth" leaves off. I love watching miniseries like this, where even the detailing of the clothes of each character really adds to the storyline.  As England is being led into the Hundred Years' War with a new King, the story begins to unfold.  You can't have a miniseries with drama, scandal, politics, etc., and this miniseries is jam packed with it.  At times, I found myself getting lost with the plot.  If it wasn't for the period clothing and crisp imagery on the screen, I think I would have shut it off or forwarded through the scenes.  Even though I sat through this entire 8 hour miniseries, by the time the movie ended, I was not only scratching my head as I tried to understand the storyline, which seemed to jump around alot, but also was a little disappointed that it didn't meet my expectations of a great historical drama.  After seeing Ken Follett's "The Pillars of the Earth" miniseries, I was hoping that they would do a sequel.  But, unfortunately this miniseries left more to be desired.  The one good thing about wathching this miniseries, is that it made me want to watch "The Pillars of the Earth" again soon.  Maybe after I see this hit miniseries, it will make this recent miniseries more enjoyable to watch.

Did you watch this miniseries on ReelzChannel last month? And, if so, what did you think of?  Was it hard for you to get into as well?  Were you also lost with the jumbled up plot?  I'd love to hear your thoughts.  Maybe I was still half-tired from a busy week with the girls to really enjoy the miniseries. :-)


About Sony Pictures Home Entertainment:
Sony Pictures Home Entertainment is a Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) company. Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE's global operations encompass motion picture production and distribution; television production and distribution; home entertainment acquisition and distribution; a global channel network; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; development of new entertainment products, services and technologies; and distribution of entertainment in more than 159 countries. For additional information, go to http://www.sonypictures.com/

Disclosure: I was sent a copy of this DVD from the vendor in order to write up an honest review.  The views above are mine and mine alone.

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