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Robin of Sherwood - Michael Praed [Blu-ray] [Region Free]

4.8 out of 5 stars 27 customer reviews

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  • Robin of Sherwood - Michael Praed [Blu-ray] [Region Free]
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Product details

  • Actors: Michael Praed, Nicholas Grace, Ray Winstone
  • Directors: Ian Sharp
  • Format: PAL
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: All Regions (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 4:3 - 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 5
  • Classification: PG
  • Studio: Network
  • DVD Release Date: 15 Nov. 2010
  • Run Time: 650 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0042QHAY2
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 20,964 in DVD & Blu-ray (See Top 100 in DVD & Blu-ray)

Product Description

A benchmark of quality television drama in the 1980s and arguably the definitive interpretation of the Robin Hood legend, this BAFTA-winning series is presented here for the first time in High Definition. Michael Praed stars as Robin of Loxley in Richard Carpenter's influential and highly acclaimed re-working of the classic myth. Combining equal parts high drama, historical accuracy and atmospheric mysticism, Carpenter's reboot pitched a band of not-so-Merry Men against a decidedly brutal and waspish Sheriff of Nottingham. With a haunting theme from Clannad, strong scripts and outstanding performances from Ray Winstone, Clive Mantle, Judi Trott and Nickolas Grace, to name a few, Robin of Sherwood was, and remains, a worldwide hit. With new HD transfers taken from the original film elements, the first two series are presented here at a quality level never previously seen. SPECIAL FEATURES: The Making of Robin of Sherwood - exclusive documentary / Enhanced Dolby Surround track / Original mono track / Music only tracks for series two / Commentary with Richard Carpenter and Ian Sharp on Robin Hood and the Sorcerer and The King's Fool / Commentary with Robert Young and Paul Knight on The Swords of Wayland / expanded version of The Electric Theatre Show documentary from 1983 and unseen footage (HD) / Series out-takes / PDF material including Richard Carpenter's original treatment / Extensive stills gallery (HD) / Textless, French and US titles

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Blu-ray
Robin of Sherwood (Michael Praed Years) Blu-ray Review

Distributor: Network Video, UK

Although over the years there have been many tales of the hooded man, Robin of Sherwood for many, remains the ultimate take on the legend. Robin Hood of the 1980's imposed a twist on the legend by adding mysticism and a Celtic soundtrack which fit the series like a glove. Perfectly written by Richard Carpenter and starring many generation actors of the time including Ray Winstone, Clive Mantle, and Michael Praed as Robin, the series instantly became a cult classic which still holds a strong following 26 years after the first episode aired. Marking the latest release, this Blu-ray disc was certainly an unexpected treat for the series many fans and was always going to make for an interesting review. Thankfully Network Video have released this set as region A, B and C so fans worldwide should have no issues of playback.

Robin of Sherwood has seen a variety of releases, dating back to original video cassettes featuring one or two episodes, to DVD releases of the complete individual series (of which there were 3) to a complete DVD box set. This new Blu-ray release contains all of the Michael Praed episodes which made up the entire first two series of the show, with each episode having been extensively remastered in high definition from the original 16mm prints. Certain collectors these days have stated that releasing a product which was filmed in 16mm onto Blu-ray is not a worthwhile exercise, however having experienced watching this series on DVD, I was actually awestruck in the difference of the 1080p print quality. The episodes are presented as transmitted in their original 4x3 aspect ratio and the enhanced detail available really shines through.
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Format: Blu-ray
I was a little worried about this release. How would a 16mm 4:3 programme like this look on blu-ray when viewed on a big plasma screen? Well, with some trepidation I placed my order and waited with baited breath... I have been a fan of this series since it was first screened in the 1980's. Frustrated with the awful Video Gems VHS releases of the early 90's, I rushed out excitedly and bought Network's wonderfully restored DVD releases some years later. I couldn't imagine that ROS could look any better than those DVD's but I was wrong. Network have done a remarkable job. The colour and sharpness of picture are strikingly enhanced and the sound quality is noticably richer than ever before; (there have been some comments floating around that there is no surround track on the blu-ray; to clarify: the main soundtrack is not DTS but it is a DD surround track). The obvious question everyone seems to be asking is, is the Blu-Ray release significantly better than the DVD release and does it justify forking out more money? I would defnitely say 'yes' if you are a fan of the programme. There are some minor gripes though: the episode order for season two is completely wrong, a mistake Network unfortunately made on the DVD release but which seems to have got even worse here - woops! (Try printing off an ep guide online before you get too engrossed...) And the disc authoring has been out-sourced to a graphics company that have done a much worse job in comparison to the beautiful menus Network created for the DVD release a few years back. Considering this is likely to be the last time you will ever buy these episodes, frankly that is a bit annoying... However, in the final analysis, it is the quality of the episodes that really counts and, thankfully, this release manages to present some of the greatest moments of 80's fantasy TV in a quality never before seen.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
It's lovely to re-acquaint myself with this beautifully atmospheric series on this excellent Blu-Ray set (with an accompanying well-researched booklet). To correct other reviewers here, 'Robin of Sherwood' was shot on 16mm - not 35mm. The increased film grain was embraced by the producers by making it part of the series' signature visual style. This is preserved by the Blu-Ray, but it should not be regarded as detrimental - it is an intrinsic part of the show's atmosphere. When you think that each 16mm frame of film is about the same size as a thumbnail, you can't fail to be impressed by the picture quality when it's projected onto an 8ft screen, as it is in my system. The show is probably best-known for Clannad's eerie and evocative music, and it has been beautifully cleaned up for the Blu-Ray.

There were a lot of jokes at the time that Michael Praed (as Robin) was even prettier than Maid Marion, but both suited the 'wood-spirits-cum-wolfs-heads' idea behind the show. Both Praed (and later Jason Connery) inhabited the role well, ably supported by a supporting cast that would be impossible to reassemble today (not least because of Robert Addie's untimely death). Much has been written about how this series provided a springboard for some cast members to move on to greater things - Ray Winstone in particular, has since worked with Spielberg and Scorsese.

Taking some dramatic and stylistic cues from John Boorman's movie 'Excalibur', this series sees Robin and his small band of 'Merries' not only battling the Normans, but also fighting to preserve pagan religion (as personified by Herne the Hunter) against a cynically politicized Christian Church.
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