Creepy in a Bad Way
J. Herndon | Rockwall, TX United States | 07/22/2003
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Why are cable documentaries so inferior to PBS documentaries?Every aspect of this documentary is second-rate - from the soundtrack to the stock footage to the writing. In the first episode, mummy footage is non-stop and disgusting. Actor voice-overs of Egyptian cult texts are creepy, often poorly placed, and outright maddening. The writing wanders all over the place and jumbles up the history of ancient Egypt into a mass of hyperbole and useless trivia - it's practically impossible to follow as coherent history.For teachers, do not buy this for your classes - no child or teenager with even the vaguest hint of ADD will want to watch this for more than 30 seconds.After the first few screenings, I like to have documentaries as background noise while I'm doing busy work at home. I can't even stand 15 minutes of 'Mummies' as background noise. I've given it two stars because it has SOME value historically."
A good overview of the culture surrounding mummies
Neil | Tennessee | 05/26/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This DVD is a compilation of four episodes from the History Channel narrated by Frank Langetta. You may remember his voice from the TNT/Lux movie "Moses" and the Artisan movie "Jason and the Argonauts."The DVD takes an interesting look at mummies by describing the culture and its world view that made mummification important. The film takes a look at the process of mummification first, then the burial situations, the monuments inspired by their views on life and death, and the language of hieroglyphics. There is a section on Tutankhamen's tomb as well as a bit of information on KV 5, the suspected burial tomb for Ramses II's sons.Some of the content on this DVD is updated and revisted in the other History Channel DVD set, "Beyond the pyramids." If you're interested in ancient history, even if not in Egyptology in particular, you will find this DVD to be informative and entertaining. It is well put together.If you are looking for "Extras" on the DVD, you won't find much. No secret gems I could find."
Great overview of an ancient culture
Jamie Ashworth | Gorham, Me United States | 11/09/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"As its title suggests, this collection of four documentaries explores several aspects of the ancient civilization within the context of the Egyptian belief system.
That is not to imply that the scope is overly narrow, it gives a good overview of the culture and explains how the Egyptians obsession with the idea of eternity fueled their rituals of mummification, construction of the pyramids, building of the sphinx, and even the development of hieroglyphics.
The individual episodes may seem to not focus on their main subject and information in some episodes is repeated in others. But these are almost insignificant flaws in an otherwise fascinating documentary."