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For King & Empire


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Product Details

  • Format: NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Studio: Video Service Corp
  • Release Date: June 29 2005
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000NDFFN6
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #26,205 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)

Product Description

For King and Empire is a documentary series, hosted by military historian Norm Chrisite, that tells the stories of ordinary Canadians who fought extraordinary battles during the First World War. Six episodes represent a turning point in the Great War: Ypres, the Somme, Vimy, Passchendaele, the Battles of the Last Hundred Days, and the Legacy of the War. By depicting walking tours of each battleground, For King and Empire explores the significance of the battle and what was at risk, the initial strategies and what actually transpired.

Customer Reviews

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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer TOP 500 REVIEWER on July 4 2009
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I cannot say enough about this absolutely wonderful, awe inspiring, moving historical Triumph! The story of young Canadians in WWI, then and where they lay now is very emotional and prideful. I am very thankful to Mr Christie and all involved in this essential work. It inspires me to visit these sites someday myself, with new eyes as to the horrors of that war in particular. This is a stunning achievement not to be missed! It should be mandatory in every Canadian school from here on out!
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By John Stephens on March 4 2009
I would highly recommend this for anyone interested in the Canadian effort during the First World War. This series will take you on a tremendously engaging and respectful tour of the events and regions that resulted in the deaths of over 65,000 Canadian volunteers - from their facing down the first gas attacks at St. Julien to the re-capture of the city of Mons at the war's end. This is bound to instill an intense pride in their actions and great sadness in their sacrifice.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Grant Mitchell on Dec 1 2009
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Outstanding piece of work topped off with excellent narration. Norm Christie's knowledge is amazing and he brings the stories of these real Canadians right into your living room. Viewing this series should be made mandatory for all Canadian (and British!) students and not just on November 11th. I could spend lines expounding why this is a must buy, but it is not necessary. The price is a bargain for what you get and you will certainly not be disappointed on its coverage. In fact, I guarantee that after you watch the ~270 minutes you will wish there were 270 more. I am glad DVDs "wear well" because these are ones that you will watch more than once. Well done Norm!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Eric Hebert on Feb. 5 2009
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All I can say. It is well done. We can see the historic Image & the report you as today on that site. Good memories for Canada!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Myer Rosen on July 21 2011
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A focused portrayal of one aspect of the First World War - the Canadians at war - which contributes to understanding the whole. Grippingly intense without cheap thrills. Patriotic and proud without being jingoistic. Firmly realistic, straightforwardly informative and yet inspiring portrayal of Canadian soldiers in battle on the Western Front of the First World War. The accurate title, "For King and Empire", anchors this documentary with unfashionabe, unabashed honesty. The even-toned narration by historian Norm Christie complements this story of heroic steadfastness and dedication in the face of death. It reminded me of my old high school teacher as he sparingly mentioned some his horrific experiences as a young Canadian soldier on the Western Front. Like my old teacher, Mr. Christie personalizes the cost by describing the cemeteries and some of the individuals there who paid the price of battle with their lives.
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Canada lost more soldiers in World War 1 than in WW2, a surprising fact unknown to most Canadians. Nearly all of these military deaths occurred along a150 km stretch of French/Belgian soil. "For King and Empire", over six 1 hr episodes triy to put all the major battles fought by Canadians into perspective with the sites they were fought and the cemeteries where the soldiers were buried that are located throughout the battle zone. From the stirring pipes and drum rendition of "The Maple Leaf Forever"..(which has I think a more stirring tune than "O Canada"), we journey with author and narrator, Norm Christie, and his crew over all the major battle sites. Today, of course, this is a beautifully picturesque farming country, contrasted with period photos showing the trench warfare panorama of mud and desolation along with towns reduced by artillery to a "Hiroshima-like" skeletal wasteland. I have visited some of these sites and cemeteries and it is chilling to stop and look at Beaumont-Hamel (Somme), for example, and picturing yourself as a 20 year old, "going over the top" in the 1st Battle of the Somme, where the Newfoundland regiment suffered 80-90% casualties on that first day. Even more sobering is a walk between the rows and rows of crosses where these young men (rarely do you see one over 22 yr.old) are laid to rest. It was so sad, especially for my wife, who, more than once, was overwhelmed with tears....and yet we knew none of these soldiers.
Norm Christie wrote, narrated, and tours the sites for us...he is not a professional historian or media person; but a Metallurgical Engineer with a love for history and a personal tie, through relatives, to World War 1.
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