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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Science > Politics > Hurricane! Katrina, Gilbert & Camille (DVD Set)

Hurricane!   Katrina, Gilbert & Camille (Nova)


Picture: C+     Sound: C+     Extras: C-     Documentaries: B



In the last few years, a disturbing, sudden and odd thing has happened in the media concerning natural disasters.  For one, they have been reported more as stories of terror than in the context of the science that makes them happen so people can grasp them better.  Instead of such responsible journalism, we get angry, hateful stories that look like bad “reality TV” that seems to celebrate the destruction and is almost rooting for people to die and property to be destroyed.  The WGBH/PBS series Nova has not lowered itself to that pathetic level and the new Hurricane!   Katrina, Gilbert & Camille set shows it.


Instead of taking what often amounts to the “Biblical punishment” approach more than just a particular 24 hour news network seems to support, Nova digs into the science, facts and does the total opposite of such stupid mystifying hocus pocus.  We previously looked at the amazing Katrina DVD and will get back to that in a minute.  To their credit, the people at Nova did the amazing Hurricane! installment back in 1989 in conjunction with the BBC and it is one of their most riveting.  Using Hurricanes Gilbert and Camille, it is very through about the science and impact of such storms, including using what was research that was even coming from outer space and The Space Shuttle.


It reminds us that the technology to detect and deal with such natural occurrences is there more than ever, so when combined with the Katrina DVD, one realizes that what happened in New Orleans was very intentional and if it were not a liberal and multi-racial area, the government would not have allowed what happened to happen.  Furthermore, the abandonment of science for pseudo-Christian dogma is the worst thing to happen to this country and has been taking a huge toll since 2000 in profound ways.  Fortunately, shows like this are on DVD and should be seen by more and more people, especially at a time when not enough younger Americans are learning enough about science in a way that threatens the infrastructure of the country.  This excellent set could not be timelier.


The 1.33 X 1 image on the Hurricane! DVD is not bad, playing about as well as the 1.78 X 1 on the Katrina DVD simply because WGBH does not believe in anamorphic enhancement.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo here does not have the surrounds that the Katrina DVD has, but it is still good for a production from a few years before, including in its sound editing.  The usual limited extras, including video descriptive services, DVD-ROM printable educational materials and a weblink are included.  You can read more about the Katrina DVD at the following link:






Both are available separately, but are strongly recommended as a set if you do not have either.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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