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The First Olympics
Athens 1896

review by Zach B.

 

 

Not Rated

Running Time: 248 Minutes

Starring: David Odgen Stiers, Hunt Block, David Caurso, Alex Hyde-White, Benedict Taylor, Edward Wiley, Nicos Ziagos, Honor Blackman, Gayle Hunnicutt, Virginia McKenna, Bill Travers, Louis Jordan, Angela Lansbury

Teleplay by: Gary Allison and William Bast
Story by: Gary Allison

Directed by: Alvin Rakoff

 

Studio: Sony

Retail Price: $19.99

Features: None

Specs: 1.33:1 Full Screen, English Mono, English Subtitles, French Subtitles, English Closed Captions, Scene Selections (24 Scenes), Two-Disc Set

Released: August 5th, 2008


 

 

"The First Olympics - Athens 1896" is presented in 1.33:1 full screen, just as it aired on TV back in 1984. It's a pretty ho-hum transfer, without any qualities that really stand out. Fleshtones and color saturation are on the underwhelming side, noise is plentiful and edge halos are slight, and detail is a bit unrefined. A few blemishes appear too, as does some shimmering, and grain is noticeable. This is a soft, medicore transfer - and not much else.


 

Not in good shape either is the English Mono track. It's straightforward, and nothing else. I didn't detect any hiss or distortion, but the dialogue sure sounds tinny and even muffled at times. The sound effects and music are audible... and that's it really. It's what you'd expect, but that doesn't make it any less underwhelming.

There are subtitles available in English and French, as well as English closed captioning.
 




Nothing.
 

Surely meant to tie in with 2008 Summer Olympics fever, this overly dramatized network mini-series fits in with the hundreds of others forgettable 1980s telefilms. The presentation is average, and there are no extras. For entertainment on older Olympics games, I'd recommend "Chariots Of Fire." Other than that, you're better off reading a book on the games.