Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Shaka Zulu - The Complete 10 Part Television Epic|
Actors: Edward Fox, Robert Powell, Trevor Howard, Fiona Fullerton, Christopher Lee
Director: William C. Faure
Genres: Indie & Art House, Drama, Television, Military & War
Studio: A&e Home Video Release Date: 11/05/2002 Run time: 500 minutes Rating: Nr
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Thomas Reiter | Washington DC, DC United States | 12/29/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"One of the best movies/series I have ever seen; the story is epic and well-told, and the acting and cinematography are fantastic.
What I liked best was the ambivalent nature of all of the main characters, not the two-dimensional cardboard cut-outs typically encountered in movies (and series). Shaka, while certainly a great leader, warrior, and king, is also certainly an utterly ruthless, blood-stained tyrant; this production does an amazing job of illustrating these and other facets of the man. As other reviewers note, Henry Cele was just amazing in this role.
The English characters were also portrayed well; the leader, Lt. Farewell, is depicted as a well-intentioned rogue seeking ivory, but ultimately his relationship with Shaka changes him. Normally he might not be a very sympathetic character, but compared to the British colonial officials in Capetown, he is practically a paragon of wisdom and virtue. The Scottish doctor meanwhile attempts with rather limited success to school Shaka in the tenents of the Christian faith--Shaka has a way of turning all of the doctor's earnest efforts completely backwards.
Finally, a comment about the large portion of the series devoted to Shaka's birth and childhood--it is Shakespeare and Greek tragedy rolled into one--prophecies, witchcraft, parricide, regicide, vengeance, love, war, etc. Very very interesting."
Irene W. Lambert | Ashburn, Va. | 12/24/2006
(1 out of 5 stars)
"I watched the entire series when it was aired on TV. I finally decided to spend $70.00 for purchase + shipping on Amazon. I'm so disappointed because there is a whole section missing. It doesn't show how Shaka was in training for war, how he took the throne from his brother and other important parts. What make matters worse is Amazon want returns to be unopened (which is impossible in this situation) or you should contact the merchant (How do I do that?). All I can say is be careful about what you purchase and make sure you really understand your options if you're not satisfied with the produce."
Roberto Frangie | Leon, Gto. Mexico | 01/13/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When Nandi and her unborn child are saved by the ancient witch doctor, he proclaims: "A force has been generated that in time will rock the foundation of the African sub-continent."
Indeed the prophecy shaped the event and Shaka was the ruthless founder of southern Africa's Zulu Empire... In less than a decade, the paramount chieftain of the Zulu clan revolutionized the techniques of tribal warfare and fashioned an efficient and terrifying fighting force that devastated the entire region...
Set against the emergence of British power in Africa during the early 19th Century, the film provides some valuable insights into comparative cultures...
Shaka (Henry Cele) is a man of considerable height, thin, with athletic body and white teeth who can read and write... He is a great warrior, tactically, strategically and physically... He rearms his army with a long-bladed, short-shafted stabbing spear, which forced them to fight at close quarters... He goes for extermination, incorporating the remnants of the clans he smashed into the Zulu, making it increase with numbers and power..
The Mini-Series begins with a letter to the British king (George IV) regarding the Zulus' potential threat to the Cape Colony... In an attempt to intimidate Shaka into an alliance with the British empire, the Secretary of War sends a delegation to inner African to meet with the fearful warrior...
We see :
- The meeting of Nandi, an orphaned princess of the neighboring Langeni clan and Senzangakona, the chief of the then small Zulu tribe... They are instantly attracted to each other... Nandi becomes pregnant, at the same time as Kona's wife, but the marriage did not last... Their marriage violated Zulu custom, and the stigma of this extended to the child...
- The couple separated when Shaka was six, and Nandi took her son back to the Langeni, where he passed a fatherless boyhood among a people who despised his mother and made him the butt of endless cruel pranks... He grew up to be bitter and angry, hating his tormentors... The Langeni drove Nandi out, and she finally found shelter with the Dletsheni, a subclan of the powerful Mtetwa...
- Shaka ruled with an iron hand from the beginning, distributing instant death for the slightest opposition...
- While en route to Shaka's capital, the crew's doctor saves a girl who is in a coma and nearly buried alive by her tribe... Impressed by both the deed and their horses, Shaka agrees to meet with the crew... And so begins the clash of two cultures, two different worlds...
- Shaka, seriously wounded for saving an unknown warrior (King Dingiswayo), is nursed to health by a beautiful Mtwetwa girl...
- Shaka, believing in total annihilation, joins the Mtwetwa army and creates a dangerous weapon for the African warfare...
- Shaka grants Port Natal, with its ivory rights, to the British crew after he is saved by the crew's doctor from an assassination attempt...
- Shaka's mighty army saving the British delegation in a battle against thousands of Ndwandwe warriors... To test the alliance and allegiance of the British delegation, Shaka orders them into battle alone against the Ndwandwe warriors...
- With his mother's death Shaka becomes openly psychotic... Thousands are killed in the initial paroxysm of his grief...
- Shaka rules by the sheer force of his personality, building, by scores of daily executions, a fear so profound that he could afford to ignore it...
Set against the spectacular panorama of the Zulu tribal homelands, and with graphic violence and frequent nudity, "Shaka Zulu" is a tremendous epic Mini-Series, chronicling the rise and fall of one of the most famous South Africans who has already passed into legend...
Not Complete - Missing Episodes!!!
P. Epps | New York, NY | 08/13/2009
(1 out of 5 stars)
"Although this item is hyped as "the complete 10-part television epic," anyone with an IQ above 50 can see that it is anything but complete. First off, the set contains only FOUR cds, which is a huge clue that something is amiss. The first cd begins with an epilogue of sorts, detailing the threat of the Zulu Nation to the British interlopers in Africa, and ends right after the shipwreck of Freewell's crew and the taking of the translator crew member by the Zulus. However, cd #2 begins its narration talking about Nandi and baby Shaka's status as they relocate to another clan as if the viewers are already familiar with her and the issues surrounding her migration. And, even though cd #2 ends with Nandi and her two elementary-school-aged children being accepted into another clan, cd #3 opens with Freewell and his crew admidst the Zulus and a much, much older Shaka followed by the assassination attempt on Shaka's life. At this point in the series I became thoroughly disgusted. I had watched this series on A&E twice before and remember some of the crucial parts that were excised, namely Shaka's evolution as a warrior and leader, his influence upon the nature of warfare, as well as his subsequent rise to supremacy; in addition to the elevation of his mother, Nandi, and the initial meetings between Freewell and the other British interlopers...pardon me...crew members. None of these things were included in this collection, therefore for the makers of this series to proffer it to the public as the complete collection is disingenuous at best and thievery at its worst. I feel as if I have been DUPED!"