The Bible: The Epic Miniseries is a masterful recreation of stories from the Old and New Testaments, from Adam and Eve through the death and resurrection of Christ. The acting, settings, and special effects are all excellent and make use of the latest techniques in blue screen and CGI.Veteran director Mark Burnett and his wife, actress Roma Downey,who also plays Mary, certainly prove they know their way around a camera.
All the familiar stories are here: Adam and Eve, Noah, Abraham and Isaac, Joshua, Daniel, Samson, David and Goliath, and all the rest, and a few less familiar stories as well.
To its credit, the series never shies away from showing violence and the very dark side of these stories. To the believers, these are stories of faith and, according to the very earnest documentaries on the making of the film, of God’s love for his people.
Watching them objectively, the Old Testament stories are all about violence and sex (although the sex is certainly played down.) Some details were notably left out, such as the fact that Lot offered his young daughters to the mob in place of the angels. A lesser known story, that of Zedekiah, was also included for reasons that are not obvious. It is a terrible story in which a man is captured, forced to watch the death of his sons, and then blinded. Why include this story?
When the narrative moves to the New Testament, the dark mood lifts as Jesus brings his teachings of love and forgiveness and hope to the world. The series does an excellent job of portraying the environment in which Jesus lived and preached, both physically and politically. The series covers not only the resurrection but Jesus’ time with his disciples after his resurrection and the final ascent into Heaven.
The story is very accurate and visibly stunning. There is over an hour of extras, covering the special effects, scoring, mission, locations and every other aspect of making this miniseries. It is all very earnest and gets a lot preachier than the miniseries does.
Overall, the miniseries makes for very exciting storytelling, with all the elements modern audiences look for. The Old Testament stories do not show a loving God to this reviewer, while The New Testament stories do show a great religious leader who taught love about all else. Interpret that as you may, the series is thought-provoking and will cause you to see things in a different perspective, whether you are believer or non-believer, and that is always good.
The Blu-ray is filmed in the most up-to-date format and
viewers are warned that they may need to update their players at the beginning of each episode, which may be why in some instances the aspect ratio seemed a bit off on my screen, making the faces and figures a bit broad and flat. The series was filmed in an aspect ratio of 1.78:1 for Region A/1, which covers the United States, Japan, Taiwan, Southeast Asia, and North and South Korea. The language is English, with French and Spanish subtitles available.
The sound is excellent, almost movie theater quality.Colors are clear and there was no apparent pixilation on my screen.
This is an enjoyable series about some of the stories that have affected our world view more than any others. It is important viewing for believers and for non-believers as well.