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Category:    Home > Reviews > Documentary > Travel > Mini-Series > Literature > Michael Palin – Hemingway Adventures/Great Railway Journeys (BBC DVD)

Michael Palin – Hemingway Adventures/Great Railway Journeys (BBC DVD)


Picture: C     Sound: C+     Extras: D     Episodes: B-



Michael Palin continues his second job (after doing comedy) of being funny while traveling in a series of documentary programming.  We covered a set of such programs before where he covered the same journey made famous by the book and film of Around The World In 80 Days, of which you can read more about at this link:





Hemingway Adventures and Great Railway Journeys make for a new DVD set in which our host does more retracing.  Like so many before him, he goes to the home and literary locations of Ernest Hemingway in four episodes.  Though you’d think this would become pretentious and boring, Palin does a good job of covering the locales with a fresh new perspective versus the “I know it all, I read the books” smugness that make them watchable.  The Railway volume is only two episodes, but retraces trips he took as a child and like other such train shows, makes for a fun journey.  Though it might not seem these would mesh as a set, they are more compatible than expected.


The anamorphically enhanced 1.78 X 1 image on Hemingway is much softer than we would have liked and expect a Blu-ray would work out much better, while the 1.33 X 1 image on Railway volume is more expectably soft like the previous set covered.  However, it too looks filmed and should the film survive, would work well in HD, especially with some of the shots and locations.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 on both are about even, though the newer Hemingway is stereo versus mono for Railway.  There are no extras.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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