Review: 100 Years of WWI (video)

100 Years of WWI.

A documentary set produced by the History Channel, this 2-disc video attacks the subject topically rather than chronologically. The theme is the technology that drove the war and arose from it.

The presentation suffers quite a bit from repetitious images and scenes (as all First World War documentaries do, to some degree), but it supplies some unique period footage along with the iconic scenes, most of which have been restored to excellent viewing condition. One of its strengths is that the almost obligatory re-enactments, featuring live action as well as computer-generated graphics, are filmed in either monochrome shades of grey or in sepia tones, and are seamlessly integrated with the historical footage. It also features reasonably well-executed, color-coded map sequences, and professional narration between interviews with various historians and voice-over readings of quotes from the war’s participants.

As a well-done, detailed examination of the technological execution of the Great War, I recommend this video for researchers and general audiences.

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