Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Dante - The Divine Comedy|
Genres: Educational, Documentary
A powerful introduction to the greatest work of medieval literature, which draws upon new dramatic filmed sequences, contemporary images and the work of artists inspired by Dante?s epic voyage of the imagination. This stir... more »
Informative, and worth watching again
Ralph Ferdingstadt | Ashland, OR | 08/17/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Recently, I purchased a copy of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's rendition of the Divine Comedy, with drawings by Doré, and thought it was time to look into more background for this landmark work of literature. I already had John Ciardi's more modern translation of the Inferno, with endnotes, which is a very useful tool for studying Dante. But more helpful still is the background material provided here, along with a video presentation of some of the greatest Dante-related masterpieces ever painted, including as you'd guess, works by Hieronymus Bosch. The scholars' comments on this disc are interesting and insightful, and the paintings well documented. My only complaint being; the enactment of the action described in the book is somewhat disposable, although forgivably brief. I have seen the first part of the TV Dante, prepared for the BBC, no longer available, and never released on DVD, and that was very interesting and frightening. I keep holding out hope someone will see fit to release that series as a set, and for either a reissue of the obscure movie, or perhaps a completely new version. A modernized re-telling of the story, with characters from our would, although problematic, would be welcome*. In the meantime, this documentary is an interesting and reasonably scholarly addition to the video library of anyone committed to a serious study of classic literature.
*Someone finally did this. See: Dante's Inferno ~ James Cromwell, John Fleck, Dermot Mulroney, and Martha Plimpton (DVD - 2008). It's worth the purchase price just for the concept alone. The animation style is strange, but it more-or-less sticks to the original concept, in that Dante and Virgil are still going through Hell to get to Purgatory, and the punishments they encounter along the way are oddly appropriate. It's a little more adult oriented, and done with a humorous slant, but it still feels like Dante, and that's what's important."
Sound bite format contradicts its self
bernie | Arlington, Texas | 08/31/2009
(2 out of 5 stars)
"The documentary is worth watching for the pictures and some keeping the storyline in order. However I think it was an accident as they had no plan when they made this documentary on how to make a documentary. If Dante had not been meticulous in his order of things this presentation would have been complete chaos.
We have several people that never talked to each other with completely different concepts of Dante. This would not be so ban in its self but the thread keep jumping from one quasi-authority to another. Most of the time they were talking about separate levels of heaven and hell; so you went up and down like a yo-yo. My favorite part is when one authority said that Dante never went to university and the next interviewed authority showed the university that his father paid his way through.
The culprits - Professor Zygmont, Dr. Catherine Keen of St John's College, Cambridge, Dr. Simon Gilson of Warwick University, Dr. Robin Kirkpatrick of Robinson College, Cambridge, plus author and leading Dante authority Dr. Anna Lawrence.
Summary written by G. Forman
The English subtitles said Camebridge not Cambridge. I can't spell but then again I am not writing sub-titles.