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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lost Focus
I'm a big fan of Francesco, especially his series on the history of Venice which had the benefit of being (a) reasonably detailed and (b) being written and presented by an insider. His series on Italy was good too, if a little superficial in its coverage. It would be interesting to see Francesco do something similar but with more depth on England, a country he visits, I...
Published on 1 Dec. 2010 by Nicholas Casley

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay
this was interesting in parts, but didnt spend enough time in some key cities. Overall, it was okay but not as good as his Italian series
Published 10 months ago by Dave


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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lost Focus, 1 Dec. 2010
By 
Nicholas Casley (Plymouth, Devon, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage [DVD] (DVD)
I'm a big fan of Francesco, especially his series on the history of Venice which had the benefit of being (a) reasonably detailed and (b) being written and presented by an insider. His series on Italy was good too, if a little superficial in its coverage. It would be interesting to see Francesco do something similar but with more depth on England, a country he visits, I understand, with his family for holidays every year; `Francesco's England', anyone?

`Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage' falls between the Venice and Italy series, in my view. There is some interesting detail but still much superficiality, but at least we can be seduced by the beautiful camerawork and Francesco's own natural charms as he engages with his adventures and with the crew of the `Black Swan'. Captain Giulio had his own fan-club in my circle of friends and many watched it to catch a glimpse of him rather than the scenery! No doubt much of the interaction between Francesco and the crew was staged but there does seem to be some genuine moments of fear and joy. And Francesco's tearful goodbye to his family before commencing his three-month voyage is quite touching.

The first episode sees his last look at Venice; the subsequent episodes cover the Croatian coast (Pula, Split, Hvar, Korcula, and Dubrovnik - with some trips into the interior); Montenegro and Albania; Corfu (with an embarrassing David Bellamy); the Gulf of Corinth and the Corinth Canal (including the Peloponnese, Delphi, and Athens); the Cyclades; Crete; the Dodecanese; the Lycian coast of Turkey; the Dardanelles (featuring Gallipoli, but alas not Troy; and Bursa for the kebabs, but alas not for the carpets or spices); and Istanbul. Since the trip is ostensibly to follow the trading routes of the Venetian empire, the obvious omissions are Cyprus and the Levant.

Whether the series lives up to its intentions is another matter, for the Venetian element often appears merely as a set of scaffolding on which is built a show of travel and entertainment. For example, when in Istria he makes no mention of the stone that built half his city; instead, he remarks about the gladiatorial games of the ancient Romans at Pula. At Corfu, whilst lamenting that Venice's four-hundred-year rule is forgotten in favour of the sixty-year-rule of Britain, Francesco nevertheless focuses on the latter. An incredible amount of time is `wasted' at a wedding on Crete. Instead of learning all about the Venetian trading posts in the Peloponnese, we learn all about `worry beads' and bee-keeping, as if these were exclusively local specialisms. I am being a little unfair, because Francesco does visit here the fortress of Mithoni, but I could only conclude that the series was more entertainment than history. Having four directors probably did not help. The icing on the cake was the final episode. Francesco visits the Topkapi Palace, the Grand Bazaar, underground reservoirs, and the bath-house, but not a word about the 1204 sack of the city by the Venetians in the Fourth Crusade.

Still, I thoroughly enjoyed the series, despite the dumbing down. As already mentioned, the camerawork is often stunning, the company is always charming, and the places visited are consistently of interest. Oh, and the music is good too! It's just a shame that the show seems to have lost its focus.

No extras!
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39 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Picturesque, entertaining and whets the appetite..., 20 July 2008
This review is from: Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage [DVD] (DVD)
Well, I haven't finished watching this series yet, because it is still being screened on the Beeb for the first time. However, from what I have seen, I can say that this series is as entertaining as Francesco's previous series on Venice and Italy - Top to Toe.

Where this show succeeds is in the BEAUTIFUL cinematography and the effective score, but mostly, I have enjoyed watching it for Francesco himself, who is an extremely informative and charming guide. His enthusiasm for the subject is boyish and endearing and you feel you'd love to get on board and join him on his journey. His skill as a historian is to make history personal so that anyone can relate to times past.

The narrative is a nice balance of history, geography and light, human-interest stories. It gives a small flavour of places you can't help but want to visit yourself. I don't think it was meant as an indepth history, as this would be impossible in a 30 min show... so Francesco has achieved, I feel, what he possibly set out to achieve... that is, to provide a little entertainment for the audience, while providing them with enough information to make them want to, hopefully, find out more for themselves!

I will definately be buying the show to view again and hope that this won't be his last!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastico!, 26 Aug. 2008
By 
Ms. K. Lafferty (Stirlingshire, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage [DVD] (DVD)
As with all Francesco's projects, his "Mediterranean Voyage" is simply a joy to watch. His quirky, heartfelt style of presentation is like taking a journey with an old friend, and the beautifully filmed Mediterranean scenery makes a wonderful backdrop to the glorious Black Swan. (And, if I'm totally honest, one glimpse of the gorgeous Captain Giulio and I was hooked!)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I don't think there is anyone else who can make me want to visit a place more than Francesco!, 2 Jan. 2010
By 
A. Boyd "shigatsuhana" (West Midlands, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage [DVD] (DVD)
Francesco has showed me another part of the world I now must go to. I never knew about Croatia's beauty. There were some cheesy moments but then that's what we've come to expect from Francesco as that's part of his character. This is certainly a must watch if you have enjoyed his other series.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More please Francesco, 27 July 2008
By 
Clare W. "claremacwatts" (Shotteswell, Oxfordshire) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage [DVD] (DVD)
This is a wonderful series. The use of the beautiful schooner the Black Swan is inspirational. Francesco is his usual charming enthusiastic self, and is a joy to watch. I have been hooked on Francesco since his first tv series on Venice. I am not happy about having two half hour programmes instead of a one hour programme. You need an hour, as the half hour just flies by, and you are left hanging in the air so to speak. Programme planners please note, as I am sure I am not the only viewer of the same opinion. The only downside to Francesco's series is that I feel discontented with my existance, and want to travel to see the places he visits. Unfortunately this is impossible, but I can enjoy seeing other lands vicariously. Please Francesco, make at least on more series of Italy Top to Toe. Bliss!
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77 of 89 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Dear Hooligween "Rowena the Red" (Kernow, Great Britain), sorry but you don't know what are you saying, 15 July 2008
By 
This review is from: Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage [DVD] (DVD)
Dear Hooligween "Rowena the Red" (Kernow, Great Britain)
i sure can accept your opinion,
but saying that my wife:
"The theme is that Francesco, a native Venetian (who happens to be married to a British TV executive, I understand...)"
it is completely wrong,
in fact she has never been and never will be a TV executive,
and saying it, carries nasty insinuations;
next time, check yous facts.
sincerely
francesco da mosto
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Francesco's marvellous Mediterranean voyage, 10 Jan. 2011
By 
Vesna Gamulin "vesnagamulin" (Dubrovnik, Croatia) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage [DVD] (DVD)
Once I have watched the two discs on my DVD, I eagerly want to express my gratitude to Francesco for letting me visit all the lovely places of his choice. He has aroused all my senses, I have enjoyed every single part of his story. Starting with Venice, the emotional story of him and his family make and Venice make his story even more valuable. Francesco is a person that you admire all through his voyage and although he wants to be a tough man I prefer him as he is, subtle and sentimental. My husband and I watched his story appreciating it twice. My husband is a sea man from Dubrovnik and so was my father, we are a family that love the sea and know what was our history, linked to all Francesco's visit on the Mediterranean. His Croatia is very good ( althoug I wished he showed more of Dubrovnik, but this is personal), his Greece is majestic, with the islands the history, the life of people past and today, the fantastic wedding with 1.500 guests including Francesco, his family waiting for him on an island in Greece and finally Istambul !
We liked his relation wish the crew, and we give them our compliments for the sailing and everything, since we sailed these waters, but not on the Black Swon, we have a small sailing boat of 13 meters and we do lots of sailing.
The Captain has certainly won all the hearts of ladies ! A very charming Italian man, typical Mediterranean, reminds me of my husband.
The Black Swan sailing boat is our of dreams, and we have the film now called Black Swan what a coincidence!
To Francesco, his crew, his team, the BBC all our compliments, with wishes for more !!! Vesna and Jadran Gamulin, from Dubrovnik _ Croatia.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Francesco delivers!, 11 Aug. 2008
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This review is from: Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage [DVD] (DVD)
All hail Francesco!!! Each segment leaves you wanting more information, more detail and more breathtaking cinematography. This charming man is more entertaining than any Brit attempting the same type of travel documentary. Things really warm up when he gets to Greek waters and a series of encounters with interesting individuals in dazzling places. Only the brief encounter with Nana Mouskouri disappoints. This is because Francesco is at his best interacting with the salt of the earth, not with artistes. So when he asks the olive farmer for another glass of tsipouro or is taken to a large wedding by a Cretan taxi driver, it is more rewarding for the viewer. This is how he gets to the soul of each location in an informative and lively way.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Makes you want to visit all the places on this DVD, 7 Mar. 2011
This review is from: Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage [DVD] (DVD)
We first watched this DVD when it was on the BBC a couple of years ago. We loved it then and I bought the DVD for my Husband along with the Italy DVD and Venice DVD also made by Francesco.

We are planning to go back to Italy very soon, and would also like to visit some of the other places on this voyage.

Francesco makes the places look wonderful. He has a spirit of adventure which comes across really well and transports you along with him on his journey's, and giving his travels the personal touch. He has almost a child like enthusiasm for the places he visits and in particular in Venice where he now lives and Sicily where he is from.

I think the tourist industry should thank him for making the places look even more appealing than they would normally do.

I would recommend any of his travel DVD's to anyone.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent and Informative Video, 23 Jan. 2011
By 
This review is from: Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage [DVD] (DVD)
This video, of high quality, is an excellent informative visit to sites of both historic
and artistic value. Francesco spends time in places most people will never visit. The narrative and dialogue is both educational and moving and presents a link between the past and the present. He has a sweet personality, is relaxed and he has a presentation which is quite refreshingly different from many travel videos. Very pleasant for multiple viewings.
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Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage [DVD]
Francesco's Mediterranean Voyage [DVD] by Francesco Da Mosto (DVD - 2008)
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