The Western Front 1917: There's disorder in the ranks when that numb-headed ninny, Captain Edmund Blackadder, stumbles onto the battlefields of WWI and discovers that people are trying to kill him.DVD Features: — Biographie... more »s
Actor:Rowan Atkinson Genres:Comedy, Television Sub-Genres:Comedy, Comedy Studio:BBC Warner Format:DVD - Color - Closed-captioned DVD Release Date: 06/26/2001 Release Year: 2001 Run Time: 3hr 20min Screens: Color Number of Discs: 1 SwapaDVD Credits: 1 Total Copies: 0 Members Wishing: 9 MPAA Rating: NR (Not Rated) Languages:English
Charlotte E. from LITTLE ROCK, AR Reviewed on 7/11/2011...
Black Adder gets better as the series progresses. This one is the best, I believe. Rowan Atkinson is better at Mr. Bean, but this series is good also. It starts off in volume 1 as a spoof on the royal family, and progresses to a spoof on the military during WWII. Great fun.
"Don't ever let him. Stop."
Todd Hagley | Decatur, GA | 03/05/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"While rumours abound about a new series of "Black Adder" and when it may appear, this disc should satisfy any itch you may get in the meantime. This may indeed be the superior series of the Black Adder set but you can decide for yourself. Six episodes, each a gem of comic writing and acting. Hugh Laurie's "George" is more well rounded than the third series while Tim McInnery's return is a welcome site. Still, credit must go to Rowan Atkinson and Tony Robinson for their stand-out performances. The writing is again superb, but the real genius of the plot is the underlying message of the futility of war and the staggering waste of human life. In the final moments of episode 6, we observe the purest moment of humanity; Baldrick's wish to lay down arms and live in peace, Darling's dream of a quiet suburban life about to shatter, and George's dumbfounded realization that his lineage, education, and money won't stop the fact that he is frightened and about to die. As the picture of stoic grace, Black Adder brings the calamity to a close with the final charge over the top. As the battlefield fades, a field of red poppies bloom in tribute to the men and women of the British Armed Forces who lost their lives. It still brings tears to my eyes with each viewing. Is the other face of comedy not tragedy? Genius."
The best of one of Britain's best comedies
HL | CA | 06/14/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Black Adder IV: Black Adder goes forth" is the best of the British comedy that takes satirical swipes at various epochs of history; Medieval (I), Elizabethan (II), Georgian/Regency (III), and finally, in this fourth series, World War I. In each series stars Edmund Blackadder (Rowan Atkinson, in what is possibly his best performance), who is sharp of intellect, corrupt and conniving. In each "resurrection" through these ages, he is accompanied by the dimwitted Baldrick (Tony Robinson).
While the first series is weak, the ensuing three are excellent, and the fourth is my particular favorite. Accompanied by his incompetent subordinates, the eternal Baldrick and the good-natured and stupid, although surprisingly talented George (Hugh Laurie), Blackadder spends most of his time attempting to evade going out into the field against the Germans (as it meant certain death). Thwarting Blackadder's goal are the loud, dimwitted General Melchett (Stephen Fry) and his "office boy", the waffly Captain Darling (Tim McInnerny), who is Blackadder's enemy. The anti-war message in this particular series is clear and poignant, exposing the futility and inefficiency of the first world war.
The series is absolutely hilarious, and each episode is excellent. Rowan Atkinson is stellar as always, but I particularly enjoyed the performance of Hugh Laurie as George. The actor is most-often cited for his performance as the prince regent in Blackadder III, but in my opinion his George in Blackadder IV is his best moments. His bumbling character, a foolish young man related to the aristocracy who clearly could not profit from attending even the best schools in Britain, is both amusing and endearing, with many little touches (such as his talents in painting and acting) which lend him more depth and personality than the prince regent character. Also of special note is Tim McInnerny's performance as the nervous, semi-neurotic Captain Darling. The ongoing hostility and verbal bickering between him and Blackadder provide for many amusing moments, and his incompetence and frustrated attempts to get the upper hand on Blackadder ultimately results in an odd sort of sympathy for him. One senses that his life never amounts to more than the dry, petty details of his officework, and like the rest of the characters he appears to be somehow trapped and powerless against a monstrous, inescapable situation greater than himself. Finally, for the persons familiar with the second series (Elizabethan era), there is the gratifying return of "Bob" and the indomitable Captain Flasheart, in a longer and even funnier appearance than his role in the second series.
In summary: Highly recommended series- A+"
HL | 02/20/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"The 'Blackadder' series is without a doubt the most wonderful comedy series of all time, in my opinion. Captain Edmund Blackadder joined the army before any wars were fought in his time, never dreaming that he would go to war. Now, he's stuck in the trenches with the intellectual Baldrick (Lowest of the animal kingdom) and George, who wants nothing more to jumps over the top and get shot to death by machine-gun fire. Featuring a few guest stars, the most memorable of which is the very cool Lord Flasheart. Wuff-wuff! Very nice. Blackadder is not very keen on going over the top and dying, and so in each episode he attempts to escape going over the top, not very well aided by George. Kevin Darling, Blackadder's enemy, is determined to stop him, and walrus-face General Melchett is no help either, sending Blackadder to go into the middle of battle and paint the Germans, and his grand plan is to kill everyone except for General Melchett, lady Melchett and their pet Tortoise, Alan. But the best thing about Blackadder is the message that it was utter suicide, sending people over the top to meet their doom, and the pointless slaughter of so many men was because of simple foolishness. In the last episode, Blackadder, Baldrick, George and even Darling go over the top. There are touching moments, such as Darling wishing he'd have made it, wishing he'd marry Doris and settle, Baldrick just wanting to say no, and George wanting to go over the top, but changing his mind, and being scared that he is about to be killed. Blackadder, who has been bitter and cruel and sarcastic to Baldrick and George, reveals that he does, very deep down, like them, saying a very memorable line the second before they go over the top, `Good luck, everyone' The screen fades to a field of poppies, and the Blackadder series, along with all it's characters, disappear forever."
"We're in a field of mushrooms?"
K. Dennis Richard Creagh | 01/31/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"As a long time fan of the Blackadder series, I feel confident to rank "Goes Forth" as second only to the third series. The comedy is more visceral rather than cerebral in "Goes Forth", which is not necessarily a bad thing, but over time, some jokes do tend to wear as thin as the canned laughter. The Western Front 1917 - Blackadder has been reduced to the ranks of Captain in the British Army. Of course, he joined when it was little more than a travel agency for men with overactive libidos, and when the type of enemy favoured were peace-loving pygmies armed only with sharp fruit. He really does not care for this soldering business anymore since everyone seems to get killed in the first fifteen seconds of battle by machine gun fire. Yes, he's not all that keen on going over the top. So with a cunning plan or two from his batsman Baldrick and the assistance of the quite possibly inbred Lieutenant George, each episode he desperately attempts to avoid yet another offer to have his brains blow out for Britain courtesy of General "Insanity" Melchett. Naturally, hilarity ensues, with trials of treason (for shooting Melchett's own carrier pigeon, Speckled Jim), flights of fancy which turn quickly into distinctly boring situations (i.e. landing behind enemy lines), and a chance to get to know a pretty nurse are just some of the stickiest situations Blackadder finds himself in since Sticky the stick-insect got stuck on a sticky bun.Tony Robinson, Hugh Laurie, and Stephen Fry all reprise their roles from previous seasons (Baldrick, George, Melchett respectively). Tim McInnery returns once again to the series, though not as Percy, but as the equally annoying Captain Darling. Miranda Richardson (fondly remembered as the egregious Queenie from the second series) makes a guest appearance in General Hospital, where Blackadder finally wins her heart only to have their affair end in tragically comic circumstances! Keep an eye out too for Gabrielle "Bob" Glaister, Adrian Edmonson, Rik Mayall, and Geoffrey Palmer who also appear in guest roles. And if you couldn't guess by the fact his face and name are on the cover, Rowan Atkinson returns to his greatest role as that Black-something-a-rather-guy.My only complaint about this DVD, is the distinct lack of special features - no commentary, no biographies, no interviews, no...anything actually. Unless of course, you, like the BBC, consider scene selection a special feature, you won't find enough special features to cover a small water biscuit. Quite a shame really, as I'm sure all fans would like at least some insight into the making of the show, the writing process, rehearsals. I can only assume that either none of the team was interested in talking about the show, or that perhaps they had no say as to the production of the DVD. That aside, this DVD is essential viewing and purchasing for any fan of the series. As highly recommended as a highly recommended thing that's been highly recommended."
The horrors of the trenches have never been funnier
samartarse | Nunavya, Biznes | 03/11/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"SPOILER ALERT The final series made in 1989 is a fine ending to the series. Set in the trenches of France in 1917, Captain Blackadder is waiting in his bunker for the order to go over the top and face certain death at the hands of the opposing German army. Each episode chronicles his attempts to get out of the trenches before the inevitable slaughter, such as putting on shows for the troops, joining the air corps, etc. As with most of the previous series, the last episode does not see Edmund survive, but here we have a fairly poignant anti war episode with most of the humour being nervous comedy. The funniest episode in my view is the General Hospital episode, though the airforce one is also a corker. Hugh Laurie reappears as the proto-Wooster Lt George and Tony Robinson again dons the much for Private Baldrink, possibly the closet thing to brain dead that you can be without the need for life support. There's also General Melchett (Stephen Fry) and Captain Darling (Tim McInnerny) "How are we then, Darling?" A sad final episode but a great one. Probably the last good thing Rowan Atkinson has done in his career."