I like to think of myself as a film buff, but up until a week ago I'd never even heard of the character, let alone knew that a lavish series of films had been made of her. Given that there were no threads about this release I guess I wasn't alone. If it wasn't for DVD Beaver listing the cryptic but intriguing title in it's upcoming release section, and a couple of rapturous customer reviews @ Amazon, I still wouldn't know about it and have missed what has turned out to be one of the most suprising and entertaining releases I've seen this year. I got the first film in from Netflix and watched it last night. Based on what I've seen so far, I can't wait to order the full set. The films, taken from a popular series of books, follow the picaresque adventures of a beautiful, strong willed lady in the age of Louis the XIV. The first movie was a meaty concoction of racey costume drama, high grade romance, political intrigue, tragic plot twists, and a little swashbuckling swordplay for good measure. The production values are suprisingly quite high and the level of writing not bad either. While not neccessarily explicit there is some brief nudity (which I don't recall seeing in Hollywood product of the same era) but the material is refreshingly aimed towards mature audiences , as opposed to merely 'adult'. Most of the specs I've seen list full frame as the AR of the discs. I'm not sure about the rest of the movies in the set, but the first one at least is around 2.35:1 and anamorphic. Just as significant, the print quality and compression/encoding all get high marks (especially considering this is Lionsgate we're talking about). There is a Studio-Canal tag at the begining, but I saw no evidence of PAL/NTSC coversion. No ghosting . Save for some very brief compression artifacting in a couple shots, the visual presentation was splendid. The French soundtrack wasn't quite as strong as the image, displaying a little bit of sibilance when the score swells, but otherwise it seemed adequete.