Posted by: sommecourt | 28/03/2012

Chronicles of WW2: A Review

The Chronicles of World War II series of DVDs are now made available by Wienerworld Ltd in the UK. The four films currently available were written and directed by Peter Batty in the late 1960s and early 1970s. As such they might seem a little dated and in many respects they are but they also offer an insight into the battles they cover using interviews with people who died many years ago, including some very senior players.

The current titles available at Battle For Warsaw, Operation Barbarossa, Battle for the Bulge and Monte Cassino.

The Monte Cassino title is one of my favourites. I once had this on VHS and it is an excellent overview of the battle made for the 25th Anniversary in 1969. The documentary interviews a number of senior officers involved in the campaign and uses good contemporary footage. It also examines the debate over the bombing of the monastery, something still controversial today, and aside from speaking to the Allied contributors, it uniquely interviews a German officer who was there who offers a fascinating take on the subject.

These are a great collection of documentaries and are high recommended despite their age; they add much to the historiography of the Second World War and Wienerworld are to be congratulated for making this back catalogue available to a new generation fascinated by the events of WW2.

The DVDs can be ordered online at: www.wienerworld.com

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