"The video quality of "IMAX - Fires of Kuwait" is absolutely appalling, a complete shocker! The image displays all compression artefacts that there are in the book, and it does so heavily. It almost looks as bad as a RealAudio movie downloaded from the internet. It is impossible to watch this DVD with any kind of enjoyment at all. There is no excuse whatsoever to use such a poor transfer putting a 35 minute movie on a DVD which holds three hours at a reasonable bit-rate. I simply lack the vocabulary to express how disappointed and aggravated I am with this DVD. To make matters worse, there are not even any chapter stops, the whole movie is "chapter 1". If there was any rating lower than one star, I would have to use it. This DVD deserves "minus five" stars."
Most visually stunning documentary I have ever seen
Tom Trails | Arizona | 04/24/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I saw this in the IMAX theater and was blown away. I don't know what the reviewer called 'ptrainor' is talking about. He/she seems confused. Being there in the midst of these huge plumes of flame and nighttime darkness at midday is surreal. I've never seen anything like it, even in today's special effects-laden fictional movies. And the ingenuity and raw determination of these firefighting teams is amazing. I agree with the reviewer who said the scene looks like "hell on earth". If you wonder what the end of the world will look like, it probably resembles this. The cool thing is that this 'hell on earth' was conquered by human creativity, bravery and determination. Get this movie and watch it on a big screen with a good sound system. It's been 12 years since I saw it, and I've never forgotten its vivid images."
Don't buy this DVD
Tom Trails | 05/23/2002
(1 out of 5 stars)
"I join with the others who expressed great dismay at the absolutely unacceptable quality of this DVD transfer. The manufacturer should recall this product and give each buyer a new version or their money back."
Tom Trails | 01/11/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Even on the small screen this a fascinating documentary. Seeing what Saddam Hussain did to the deserts of Kuwait made me glad to know that he will soon, at long last, be brought to justice for his crimes against man and nature."
Raw, Disturbing and Awe-inspiring, not Pretty
RP | IL | 08/06/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have always been impressed with the images recorded on IMAX film projects through the years. However, it was always clear to me that the settings (except perhaps "Everest", also a personal favorite) were carefully planned and controlled. This IMAX film is quite different and must be appreciated as such. Rehearsing the aftermath of one of the most craven acts of destruction (economic, environmental, you name it) in modern history (while it happens) is bound to be unforgettable, but not for beauty. Indeed, those commenting on picture quality must consider the atmosphere in which this film was shot. It is clear during the film that everything was covered repeatedly and constantly by aqueous or burning petroleum, its vapor and by-products. This is an existential apocalyptic horror, not a careful video essay.
All of the above said, this film transported me to the middle of a truly unimaginable moment - darkness at noon, the sun (when visible) hanging heavily over the horizon like a full moon rising.
Saddam Hussein is being defended by some even to this day as a legitimate ruler whose deposition was unjust. It escapes me how anyone (especially an environmentalist) could come to such a conclusion given this attempt to poison an entire region. Strangely, this is the same man who later did fatally poison (by chemical warfare) his own Iraqi Kurdish people. In retropect, perhaps the dark mind that lit the Fires of Kuwait was afterward only drawn to greater destruction and human tragedy.
One of the most affecting films I have ever witnessed."