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Piece of Cake (The Complete Series)


List Price: CDN$ 38.99
Price: CDN$ 31.53
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Piece of Cake (The Complete Series) + First Light + Battle of Britain
Price For All Three: CDN$ 74.11

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Product Details

  • Format: NTSC, Full Screen
  • Language: English
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Studio: Bfs Video
  • Release Date: March 8 2011
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (24 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B004JMSISQ
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #12,099 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most helpful customer reviews

25 of 25 people found the following review helpful By lydia03 on Jan. 20 2004
Format: DVD
You don't have to be a military aviation or World War II buff to enjoy "A Piece of Cake". Originally aired on British television in 1988 and then the following season on Public Television here in the U.S.,"Piece of Cake" is a six-part mini-series, that follows the fortunes of Hornet Squadron - a fictional RAF fighter squadron - during the first year of World War II. Based on the book by Derek Robinson, the story begins on September 3, 1939 and ends on September 7, 1940.
"Piece of Cake" takes the viewer from Chamberlain's broadcast, through the so-called phony war, the fall of France and finally, the Battle of Britain. "Cake" tells the story of these historic events, not on the grand scale of a "The Longest Day", but on a small, intimate scale. Life and death, love and war, sorrow and joys are told through the stories of the men (boys in many cases) of this squadron - individually and collectively.
"Piece of Cake" is an example of what British television does so well - the ensemble production. There are no stars in this series, except perhaps the half-dozen or so antique Spitfires rounded up to perform the aerial sequences. The cast assembled were relative unknowns, although some have subsequently became familiar faces to viewers of PBS series such as "Masterpiece Theater" and "Mystery". Certainly the absence of big-name stars contributes to the realistic feel of the series. You are meeting each actor and the character he portrays for the first time.
Another factor contributing to authenticity of the series was the way "Piece of Cake" was filmed.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 14 2004
Format: DVD
I remember the introduction given by Alistair Cooke about the many strange characters in the squadron. He said something like "Veterans of the time tell me that they recognised all the characters as people they encountered but not all at the same time and in the same squadron". This is confirmed by my own experience in Vietnam. I saw all the types over 2 tours, including a CO who insisted in tight formation flying. The typical helicopter pilot's idea of formation flying is "same day, same way". Eventually enough of the discontent of the pilots filtered upstairs and he was 'promoted' to a desk job. With that caveat, the series is well done and worth seeing.
A point worth making is that at the begining of every war, the troops have to find out what works and what doesn't, often at the cost of lives. Tight formation flying was a case in point. Essential in WW1, deadly in WW2.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By M. Veiluva on Oct. 10 2003
Format: DVD
Ignore the cover of the DVD. The love interest is really a minor part of this wonderful British miniseries which follows an RAF squadron through the "Phoney War" (September 1939 - May 1940), the battle for France (May-June 1940), and the Battle of Britain through its climax in the fall of 1940.
This is not your usual squadron of movie heroes. For starters, the squadron commander seems to spend more time working on the wine list than thinking about strategy. As for flying, he wants them to fly into battle in straight, wingtip-to-wingtip formations like a marching band. The pilots are for the most part upper class elites happy with the leader's 'fox and hounds' demeanor. Some of the pilots are not especially likeable, particularly "Moggy" , a boarding-school bully who, it turns out, is an ace killer. The one "Yank", a Canadian socialist and veteran of the Spanish Civil War, gets to smirk at the upper crust poseurs.
It's a good mix, and for the first six months of the war, there's not a lot of go at the Boche, and what is great about the series is the shock and surprise when the war begins in earnest. The battle scenes are as well done as the big screen "Battle of Britain", except we really know these characters by the time the real war hits. Some excel, some crack, and some pack it in. One character starts to speaking exclusively in quotes from Churchill speeches, unnerving the squadron adjutant. The final two episodes are very, very intense, and unlike Hollywood, the movie does not play favorites with who lives and who doesn't.
The Spitfire was the most beautiful plane ever flown, and we get good long looks at the real thing. The flying scenes are a treat. Great for grognards, but the story is well rounded and a good time should be had by all.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Eaglemont on Nov. 28 2011
Format: DVD
Some of the most outstanding flying of fighters in WW II and a touching story of the heartaches of young boys coming of age and trying to be men.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By "BugSmasher" on Feb. 19 2013
Format: DVD
Well, we'll try to print up the 2nd review on this fine series unless it disappears into "Cyberspace" as in the 1st. Maybe just facts this time ? As a pilot, an A/C buff & dare we say a self proclaimed Historian of WW2, I really liked this series as a fictional account of the RAF's early years of WW2. For the Spitfire fan or addict this is a great DVD series with lots of T/O's, patrolling, dog-fighting, in-cockpit action shots, etc. Of course the true Historian will see many inaccuracies such as in the early part of the war the RAF never had Spitfires stationed in France. At this early part they flew Hawker Hurricanes in France. But, you get to witness as well as hear Spitfires doing what they do best & to me personally that alone is well worth the price of this DVD series in itself. I won't bore anyone with the wrong marks of Spitfires Hornet Squadron were flying when they returned to English soil to fight in the Battle of Britain or the reasons why? A really great cast of characters that fit their parts & no Hollywood heroes. A little humor, romance, sadness, fear, bravery with a touch of insanity all mixed in. Just as in a real squadron personality clashes could & did happen as in Hornet Squadron. A great series & quite like it was in reality or so I've been told as well as reading of such. Actually the wife & I got into this series looking forward to meeting the boys almost as if they were family as each segment opened. The new pilots, the old gang, no favorites dealing with MIA or KIA. We especially enjoyed the review narration at the beginning of each segment catching us up on the last segment to start the next. And the music just took us away to a bygone era. DEFINITELY FIVE STARS.
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