The "Dinosaurs Inside and Out" DVD contains four episodes: "Renaissance of the Dinosaurs," "Land of the Giants," "The Killer Elite," "And Then There Were None." The DVD might be better named "Paleontology Inside and Out" because each episode describes more about how paleontologists research dinosaurs than about the actual dinosaurs. Anyone who wants to be a paleontologist or who wonders how they work in the field and in the lab will find the DVD very worthwhile.
The first episode, "Renaissance of the Dinosaurs," gives a brief history of paleontology and describes some of the very important finds, like Jack Horner's "Egg Mountain." Research to uncover the very first Triassic dinosaurs in Argentina is covered late in the episode.
The second episode, "Land of the Giants," describes how paleontologists study the giant Sauropods of the Jurassic to estimate their weight and how much land area it tool to support the eating habits of a large Sauropod. Other paleontologists study Sauropod trackways to see how they interacted and calculate how fast they could walk.
The third episode, "The Killer Elite," describes how paleontologists find and dig up various Theropod dinosaurs like T. rex and the raptors. The legal battle and auction of "Sue" the T. rex is covered.
The fourth episode, "And Then There Were None," describes various theories about why the dinosaurs became extinct and how paleontologists are researching the extinction. The episode describes how climate change, disease and a killer asteroid could have brought about the end of the dinosaurs.
In 1998 I would have given this DVD five stars. But I bought this DVD, pre-release, from Amazon.com in May 2009 and was very disappointed to find that while the DVD is copyrighted 2009, the episodes are copyrighted 1997. I was expecting to get some of the latest information about dinosaurs but that's not going to happen with information from the last century. So, I took one star from the rating because the information, while good, is dated.
Generally, the program production quality, like the photography and narration, is very good. But there are a couple of exceptions. There are a few clips of computer generated dinosaurs that are reused in the various episodes in an attempt to show living animals. Thankfully, these clips are very short because they are very amateurish even by 1997 standards. The running T. rex is particularly laughable. If these clips were longer, I would have removed another star from the ratings.
Some of the music, like the main theme and some background music, sounds like it came off the shelf of a free electronic music library. It sounds like what you might expect to hear in a zero budget movie or porn flick. That's kind of surprising given that these episodes are Discovery Channel productions.
If you want to see how paleontologists work and aren't concerned about the latest research like dinosaur genetics, buy this DVD. But if you want more up-to-date information on dinosurs, you should buy the Discovery Channel's "Essential Dinosaur Pack."