Entertainment » Television

Game Of Thrones - The Complete Fourth Season

by David Foucher
EDGE Publisher
Tuesday Feb 17, 2015
Game Of Thrones - The Complete Fourth Season

If you haven't watched the fourth season of "Game of Thrones," you either don't have HBO, you're living under a rock, or you just don't like medieval-themed sex, gore and mayhem.

If your excuse is the first, get this Blu-Ray set pronto, and sign up for April's premiere of Season Five before you are out of touch at the water cooler. If your excuse is the second, use a double-bladed axe to lever your way out and start watching from Season One. If your excuse is the last, then you're as unusual as a three-eyed crow.

Either way, the steamrolling cultural phenomenon of "Game of Thrones" hits a new peak in Season Four. And you might love your digital copies for "normal" television shows and films, but for fans of this series, nothing replaces the full set of special features to be found on disc.

Odds are you've already got HBO, so you can watch the episodes on demand. If not, pick up the Blu-rays to enjoy the season without regard for Internet/cable bandwidth. But the true stars here are the featurettes and commentaries. And I don't say that lightly; much like "Lord of the Rings," the fantastic glimpse into the making of cable's most successful series ever is a wonder to behold.

The star of the show is the documentary behind Episode 409 (read: Season Four, Episode Nine), "Behind the Battle for the Wall." This incredibly ambitious battle was shot in three locations over a number of dark -- occasionally rainy -- nights on oversized sets. You'll follow along with cast and crew members as they create this hour-long sequence. Of particular fun is the work required by the infamous "360" crane shot, as well as how the SFX crew and director managed to merge the three locations into one thrilling hour.

Surprisingly, the commentaries are also a delight for fans. In my opinion, it takes a story of this magnitude to make commentaries worth your time investment, and "Game of Thrones" largely delivers; many of the actors are very, very funny in their recounts. And it's clear that the "GoT" cast and crew really is a family, behind the scenes.

Some of the features are of lesser impact, including the deleted scenes (only two), the outtakes (not funny enough), and a spattering of features on Westerns' bastards and a look back at Season Three. But the "Histories & Lore" series is very charming, and offers a unique animated perspective on some of the backstories absent from the television series thanks to the constraints of time.

It's too bad we probably won't see an "extended version" of the entire seven-year series once it's complete; with only a few deleted scenes here and there, it seems that HBO's production runs a tight ship. But there's tons of enjoyable material here to keep the avid fan watching for well beyond the ten hours of show.

"Fame of Thrones: The Complete Fourth Season"

David Foucher is the CEO of the EDGE Media Network and Pride Labs LLC, is a member of the National Lesbian & Gay Journalist Association, and is accredited with the Online Society of Film Critics. David lives with his daughter in Dedham MA.

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