Cadfael: The Complete Collection

DVD Wholesale Quick Overview:

Cadfael is “enchanting.” I know this, because that review (by the Washington Post), is on the covers of all four sets of the medieval mystery series. I don’t need to be told that, though, because the series really speaks for itself. From the first moments of the opening titles, which show intricate and macabre carvings in a dim light, the entire tone of the series is set.

Derek Jacobi portrays the titular monk, who is essentially the only voice of reason for many of the show’s thirteen mysteries, which are spread out over thirteen discs. Cadfael (pronounced CAD-file) as a character is fine, and Jacobi does a great job with the character. Meanwhile, some of the dialogue is a little cheesy — too often we see the clear stereotypical line between mumbling lowlifes and eloquent, well, everyone else. As such, a lot of the acting is a little overdone. Thankfully, that seems right in place with the medieval setting, and we can accept it as part of the series. Call it a suspension of criticism, in one regard. After you do that, the series is entirely enjoyable fluff, and is much like a paperback mystery novel you would find at Walmart: self-contained, largely formulaic, and intensely great comfort food. Is it a great show? Not entirely. Is it entertaining? Quite so.

The set itself is physically pretty thick. It doesn’t feature thinpak cases like many previous Acorn releases. Instead, Cadfael is a slipcase around the four individual “set” cases, which are the same size as normal DVDs, only with three or four DVDs crammed in there. It’s quite easily the most sizable set I’ve seen from Acorn in terms of content, though Prime Suspect is bigger in terms of sheer size. So when you get Cadfael, you feel like you’re really getting something major.

DVD Wholesale Main Features :   

Actors: Derek Jacobi, Terrence Hardiman, Michael Culver, Julian Firth, Julian Glover
Directors: Graham Theakston, Herbert Wise, Ken Grieve, Malcolm Mowbray, Mary McMurray
Writers: Christopher Russell, Edith Pargeter
Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC
Language: English (Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo)
Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only.)
Number of discs: 13
Rated: NR-Not Rated
DVD Release Date: November 2, 2010
Run Time: 975 minutes

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