100 Years War, Crecy 1346

KB0157

The resulting DVD is very watchable, the re-enactment and specially commissioned maps providing a vivid picture of life in the 14th Century. The presenters add the authenticity of people with military experience who are also closely engaged in the research and scripting that make this a memorable historical military documentary

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NAME: 100 Years War, Crecy 1346
CLASSIFICATION: Video, DVD, reviews
FILE: K0157
DATE: 180613
PRESENTER(S): Tim Saunders, Mike Peters, Andrew Duff
PUBLISHER: Pen & Sword Digital
MEDIA: DVD
FORMAT: Dual layer
RUNTIME: 110 minutes
PLAYERS: Linux Workstation, Personal Computer, Mac Computer, DVD Player
INTERNET:
PRICE: £13.59
GENRE: Non-Fiction
SUBJECT: Medieval warfare, English army, French army, western France, Somme, Normandy, invasion, bowmen, cross bowmen, men at arms, knights, chivalry, Black Prince, Edward III
ISBN: 0-24762-044-7
IMAGE: KB0157
VIDEO:
BUYNOW: http://tinyurl.com/nrvv3qj
LINKS:
DESCRIPTION: For those who have already viewed a BHTV DVD published by Pen & Sword, this is another well-researched, scripted, presented and filmed work. The photography and lighting is first class with a good sound track. For those who have not viewed a BHTV DVD before and have only experience of broadcast tv programmes, this is a significantly better product than their previous experiences. Even the best tv historical documentaries tend to feature breathless professional presenters who may have little knowledge of their subject and attempt to dramatize the presentation and/or patronize their audience. This can take the shine off even the best-researched and scripted tv productions. The BHTV approach is very different. The presenters are former soldiers, historians and authors, many also acting as battlefield tour guides. Their starting point is the assumption that the audience already has some interest in the subject and may already have studied it with some enthusiasm. As former soldiers, they have a feel for the terrain and this is important to the understanding of battlefields. Commanders seek to fight on terrain that favours them, making use of natural features to increase their potency in battle Every commander has some choice, but is also channelled by natural features, making the choice of beaches for landings, and routes of advance significant factors in the eventual choice of battlefield and the outcome of a campaign.

The BHTV team producing this DVD has followed the BHTV established approach, combining location filming with the use of maps drawings, paintings and artefacts to bring the battle to life. There is not need for artificial dramatics because the events the presenters recount are already dramatic. To add to the depth of information and colour, the presenters are working with members of the Medieval Combat Society who re-enact Medieval battles. These enthusiasts build up considerable knowledge of their chosen period and take great trouble to ensure that they equipment themselves with accurate reproductions of clothing, arms and armour. Within their group, they faithfully reproduce the complete range of personnel making up a field army of the period. This provides an opportunity to see how the technology and practices of the past impact on the conduct of military campaigns.

In this DVD, one of the most important battles of the Hundred Years War is examined. The presenters look at the political, military and economic background. In this battle, the English fielded a well-trained and equipped professional army that included personnel at all ranks who had served together for up to ten years and of whom many had previous experience of serving in the area of Crecy. The chosen method of fighting was on foot, horses being used primarily for mobility to the battlefield. The knights and men-at-arms fought in the centre, flanked by longbowmen. Ranged against them, and out numbering them by more than 4 to 1, was a feudal French Army where the knights fought from horseback and the horse and equipment were status symbols in the chivalric code of the feudal system and where the bowmen were Italian mercenaries equipped with crossbows.

When the main battle was joined, the English longbowmen were able to lay down a heavier and more accurate fire at a longer range than the French crossbows. The English also employed guns for the first time in a European battle, perhaps not yet significant, but adding to the fury of the English response to the French.

What is also most interesting are the many points of similarity between the English landings in Normandy, the support of a large English fleet, and the actions fought in the breakout from Normandy, with the events of 1944 when a force again sailed from Portsmouth to Normandy, establishing a beachhead and then breaking out to head through France into the Low Countries. There are also important similarities between the Crecy campaign and the battles of Marlborough and Wellington in the 17th and 18th Centuries.

The resulting DVD is very watchable, the re-enactment and specially commissioned maps providing a vivid picture of life in the 14th Century. The presenters add the authenticity of people with military experience who are also closely engaged in the research and scripting that make this a memorable historical military documentary

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