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The Winds of War

4.4 out of 5 stars 49 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Actors: Robert Mitchum, Ali MacGraw, Jan-Michael Vincent, John Houseman, Polly Bergen
  • Producers: Branko Lustig
  • Format: Box set, Collector's Edition, Color, DVD-Video, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (US and Canada This DVD will probably NOT be viewable in other countries. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 6
  • MPAA Rating: NR
  • Studio: Paramount
  • Release Date: May 25 2004
  • Run Time: 883 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 49 customer reviews
  • ASIN: B0001NBNGQ
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,683 in DVD (See Top 100 in DVD)
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Product Description

From the Back Cover

Set against the backdrop of world events that led to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, "The Winds of War" stars Robert Mitchum as Victor "Pug" Henry, a career naval officer who along with his family, learns to navigate the waters of his dangerous times in the late 1930s. While Germany expands and proceeds to seize several border countries, Italy attempts to establish a Fascist Colonial Empire under Mussolini and Japan prepares for a major battle with China. Meanwhile, the Henry clan finds itself drawn into the center of the conflict as they deal with the drama, romance, tragedy and heroism that lead to America's involvement in World War II.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
Paramount deserves major congratulations for doing right by The Winds of War with their DVD release.
I was anxious to make sure this DVD measured up, so I watched it with my old VHS playing at the same time, and switched back and forth occasionally on the remote to see the difference. It's nothing less than astonishing. The old Winds videos look unwatchable when compared to the new image, which probably looks as close as possible to the way it was shot.
This is, of course, a TV miniseries from 1983, long before anyone imagined the resolution of DVD, so it's not going to look perfect. Still, almost every time I switched to the VHS, then back, I literally said "wow." Colors are distinct and deep, details are sharp and the variously-colored hazes that afflicted most of the VHS are gone. Having only seen the series this way, the DVDs were a revelation. These discs represent what is best about DVD and its success, bringing a long-quiet catalog title back to life.
Although Paramount usually mixes new 5.1 audio tracks for their old films, with 15 hours of film here, they can't be blamed for leaving the existing mono tracks, which are certainly decent and don't detract at all from viewing the film. (I can't understand the other reviewer who gave the DVD set one star, largely because of the audio. Doesn't he understand how prohibitively expensive a new sound mix of that length, for such a complex series, would have been? We're very lucky with what we've got.)
Paramount also fixed some framing mistakes on the VHS edition. Large portions of episodes 5, 6 and 7 were noticeably off-center when compared to the re-aligned DVDs.
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Format: DVD
I remember sitting in front of the TV when this excellent mini series first aired. While some of the actors chosen to portray characters from Herman Wouk's fine novel in retrospect were questionable (Jan Michael Vincent?), Robert Mitchum remains for me the only person who could have brought "Pug" to life on the screen. His understated style makes him all the more charasmatic as the chaos of a coming war impacts on his family - this is a master class of a fine actor at his best. History is well documented here (and in the subsequent realted mini series War and Remembrance); in no way is the presentation dated and so it is a 'must have' for anyone who enjoys a good story.
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By A Customer on May 19 2004
Format: DVD
Wouk's two novels are superb. Winds of War is now, at last, on DVD. The several DVD's are in a conventional multi-disk box and will make a superb addition to your collection. BUT.....The follow on series, War and Remembrance is a different thing altogether. The problem is, once you watch Winds of War you're going to want to watch War and Remembrance right after, without doubt, to see how these characters come out at the end. The problem is that War and Remembrance is put out by a different company, MPI Video. There's nothing wrong with the transfers....it's the packaging. They split the sequel into two boxes with 6 and 7 discs respectrively. That's OK, but then they put them in these monstrously large boxes that just won't fit on your DVD shelf along with your other titles. These boxes are huge. On top of that, while Winds of War is fairly priced, the W&R sets are $113 EACH. The only way we'll get these boxes republished the way they should be is to bombard MPI with lots of e-mail asking for it. Until they do it, I can't bring myself to buy Winds of War and that's not fair to its distributor who did everything right.
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Format: DVD
Thank goodness that "The Winds of War" is finally available on DVD. I missed the original presentation of TWOW when it was first shown on television, but later bought the videocassete version, which was enjoyable enough. Unfortunately, I did not realize (until I got the DVD version) that the VHS version omitted a great many scenes of the original miniseries. This DVD version appears to present TWOW in its entirety, as far as I can tell. Wonderful!
This is a very well-done presentation of Wouk's masterpiece--essentially tracking an American Naval family through pivotal events just prior to America's entry into the Second World War. The viewer is introduced to prewar Nazi Germany, the Nazi invasion of Poland, Britain's early struggles against the Nazis, issues surrounding President Roosevelt's attempts to prepare America for its inevitable entry into the War, and its aid to the British. As other reviewers have mentioned, the casting is fabulous. Robert Mitchum is perfect as Victor Henry, Jan Michael-Vincent is a great Byron Henry, John Houseman is wonderful as Aaron Jastrow, Victoria Tennant is magnificent as Pamela Tudsbury. All of the leads do very well in my opinion. Further, the script is very faithful to the novel, rarely deviating from it, and this is a plus, because the novel moves at a steady pace with a solid storyline. The result is that this is a miniseries that does not feature much in the way of draggy pointless interludes the way so many miniseries sometimes do. Every minute of TWOW is enjoyable and worth watching, which is why I am so pleased that this DVD version is uncut, presenting the entire miniseries.
This is a wonderful value and a fabulous viewing experience about one of the very best novels dealing with World War II.
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