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Francesco's Venice : Complete BBC Series [DVD]

4.7 out of 5 stars 270 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Actors: Francesco Da Mosto
  • Format: PAL, Subtitled
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Subtitles For The Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 2 (This DVD may not be viewable outside Europe. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Classification: 15
  • Studio: 2 Entertain Video
  • DVD Release Date: 19 Jun. 2006
  • Run Time: 235 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (270 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000F3T918
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,614 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)
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Product description

Product Description

A breathtaking journey through the ages, telling the story of one of the world's most famous and beautiful cities. This lavish, landmark series explores how a place with no firm ground, no crops, no indigenous riches and no land army came to snatch success from the jaws of failure time and time again - right up to the present day. Step back in time to early Venice, recreated by the magic of CGI. See wooden houses on stilts replaced by the daring rebuild in stone and brick.

Witness the sacking of Constantinople and the Venice of Casanova, Napoleon, Byron and Mussolini. The stunning recreations and dramatisations in each episode are enriched by insights from charismatic aristocrat, architect and historian Francesco da Mosto. His family has lived in Venice for over a thousand years and, far from having that sinking feeling, he believes passionately in the future of this miraculous city...

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Francesco da Mosto is the charming host of a number of TV programs exploring the ancient history of Italy and its artistic and cultural contribution throughout the ages. Without a TV, and not really missing it, we have the opportunity of collecting DVDs of the best programs and series and this is a big favourite, which we view every few months with undiminished enjoyment.

This DVD series (on 2 discs) is devoted to Venice, Francesco's birthplace and the city where he still lives. Apart from stunning photographic coverage of places and interiors, this series attempts to explain what it is like to be a Venetian, a world citizen, but forever bound to this gorgeous, unique sinking masterpiece. A fascinating visual presentation of history and art in a very friendly, companionable way. Francesco acts like a virtual friend taking us round to see the sights. I love these programs and have bought others featuring the same host.
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Narrated by the charismatic and chain-smoking Venetian actor/architect/historian Francesco Da Mosto, this BBC series gives an illuminating look at the history of the incredible Venice. Da Mosto's family have a very long association with Venice - he can trace his ancestors back to the fifth century. One of his famous descendants is the explorer Alvise da Mosto, who discovered the Cape Verde islands off the west of Africa. Da Mosto has lived in Venice all his life - in many ways he is the perfect host.

With four hour-long episodes, Da Mosto charts the long and winding course Venice's history. In "Blood", he describes how a little known swamp of a malaria-infested lagoon became a secret hideaway from attackers - the birthplace of Venice. The role of the Doge (leader) of Venice is described in detail, and Da Mosto visits the stunning Doge's Palace. He tells the bloody and gruesome story of probably the most famous Doge - Enrico Dandolo - who was blinded when he went to Constantinople for peace talks, but returned to Venice and continued even stronger in his role.

In "Beauty", Da Mosto describes the arrival of the golden age of art and architecture - when small wooden houses transformed into glittering stone and marble palaces that lined the Grand Canal. Almost overnight, fishermen became successful trading merchants. This was the age of Venice producing the world's most famous artists and most stunning buildings as Titian and Palladio transformed the landscape and image of the city. But problems kept occurring - the killer plague virtually destroyed the city, and the emergence of a new trade route to the east round the Cape of Good Hope cut out Venice from key business relationships.
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Surprisingly good set of four docs about Venice. I wish I had watched them before my last visit rather than afterwards. Entertainingly covers the history, arts, culture, debauchery and landmarks of Venice. Very worthwhile, answered many questions I had and a number which had, t occurred to me. Can recommend.
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Francesco is entertaining and somewhat hypnotising with his voice and accent. Very entertaining , well done and educational!
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Highly informative and the content can not be faulted, but I found it all just a bit too dry and as excited as we all were about an upcoming trip to Venice and trying to glean nuggets of useful historical and cultural context, we lost concentration and ended up drinking tea and not getting to the end of the DVDs.
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Recently visited Venice with friends 2 of whom had not been before. I decided to get each of them a copy of the DVD as I knew it would help to fill in some of the gaps because of its high quality and level of historical information.
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Essential viewing if you want to go to Venice. We watched it before we visited and fell in love with the city. On our 4th visit in as many years were we're lucky enough to bump into the man himself as he stood on a bridge by the Rialto Market. Lovely and down to earth, his love for this city shines as bright in person.
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very good
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