'BBC Earth: Rivers Of Life'
(DVD / PG / 2019 / PBS)
Overview: This landmark three-part series reveals the extraordinary animals, epic landscapes, and remarkable people who live alongside three iconic rivers.
Using new technology and exclusive stories, 'Rivers of Life' reveals a wider and fresh perspective on the extraordinary landscapes, surprising wildlife, and extraordinary people of the Nile, the Mississippi, and the Amazon.
DVD Verdict: Directed by Lydia Baines, Mark Flowers, and Simon Blakeney and narrated by Michael J. Hayes, 'Rivers Of Life' may well have been told before in its parts spread over many other PBS and other companies home entertainment releases, but here as one, as a whole, the Holy trilogy has come home in style, it has to be said.
Revealing a wider and fresh perspective on the extraordinary landscapes, surprising wildlife, and extraordinary people of the Nile, the Mississippi, and the Amazon, we first delve into The Nile.
The Nile River flows over 6,600 kilometers (4,100 miles) until emptying into the Mediterranean Sea. For thousands of years, the river has provided a source of irrigation to transform the dry area around it into lush agricultural land.
Today, the river continues to serve as a source of irrigation, as well as an important transportation and trade route.
The Nile River flows from south to north through eastern Africa. It begins in the rivers that flow into Lake Victoria (located in modern-day Uganda, Tanzania, and Kenya), and empties into the Mediterranean Sea more than 6,600 kilometers (4,100 miles) to the north, making it one of the longest river in the world.
The Nile River was critical to the development of ancient Egypt. In addition to Egypt, the Nile runs through or along the border of 10 other African countries, namely, Burundi, Tanzania, Rwanda, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kenya, Uganda, Sudan, Ethiopia, and South Sudan.
Its three main tributaries are the White Nile, the Blue Nile, and the Atbara.
Next up is The Amazon. It nurtures the largest rainforest on earth and provides life for a mind-boggling array of flora and fauna – the Amazon River is one of South America’s most fascinating destinations to discover and, despite centuries of in-depth exploration, it’s still a mystical place that hides innumerable secrets.
In this new documentary from PBS we learn all there is to know about this incredible ecosystem which will definitely make your Amazon River visit in South America all the more rewarding.
Lastly we encounter The Mississippi. The Mississippi River is one of the world’s major river systems in size, habitat diversity and biological productivity.
It is also one of the world's most important commercial waterways and one of North America's great migration routes for both birds and fishes.
Native Americans lived along its banks and used the river for sustenance and transportation. Early European explorers used the Mississippi to explore the interior and the northern reaches of what was to become the United States.
Fur traders plied their trade on the river and soldiers of several nations garrisoned troops at strategic points, at various times, along the river when the area was still on the frontier.
White settlers from Europe and the United States (and often their slaves) arrived on steamboats dispossessing the Native Americans of their lands and converting the landscape into farms and cities.
Today, the Mississippi River powers a significant segment of the economy in the upper Midwest. Barges and their tows move approximately 175 million tons of freight each year on the upper Mississippi through a system of 29 locks and dams.
It is also a major recreational resource for boaters, canoeists, hunters, anglers, and birdwatchers and offers many outdoor opportunities.
Of course, there are many, oh so many more wondrous facts to be learned about these three Rivers, but without giving them all away here (and without having to type them all out for the next four hours solid!), trust me when I say that this new documentary is as good as it gets knowledge wise on these breathtaking Rivers. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1.85:1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.