Small thing, I'm planning on getting all of the Giant Bomb community wrestling fans to start posting in the Wrestling Ring forums on Giant Bomb. Just one step closer to taking over Whiskey Media and creating a Whiskey Media wrestling site.
If you've never sat through a WWE DVD, then you haven't experience the high quality documentaries about behind the scenes wrestling that WWE produces frequently. My personal favorite that WWE has done to this point was The Rise and Fall of ECW, and I highly suggest checking it out if you haven't already. The newest from WWE is a beginning to a new series called WWE's Greatest Rivalries, and I'm pretty sure that you might not be able to start of a series like this better than showing off the history of Bret "The Hitman" Hart vs. Shawn Michaels.
The documentary portion looks throughout the entire history with Shawn Michaels, Bret Hart, and Jim Ross serves as the moderator for the conversation. JR does a great job of maintaining the conversation. He sits across the table and let Shawn and Bret tell their stories and usually stays out of it for general knowledge stuff, and pushes the issues that are still unclear to the general public (If Shawn meant it when he told Bret to "get the hell out of my spotlight" at the end of Wrestlemania or if it was part of the story the two were trying to build). Bret Hart is in full shoot mode, and the man tells it like it is even if Shawn is two feet away from him. For someone that has been through a stroke and has lost most of his family and friends over the past decade (Owen Hart, Stu Hart, Helen Hart, Davey Boy Smith, Brian Pillman, Curt Hennig, etc.) Bret is emotionally stable enough to not only recollect what happened at every dramatic point in his career, but is able to remember the exact date and location of the incident.
Shawn Michaels is widely known as being a complete asshole during his first major stint in the WWE (before he seriously injured his back in 1997). Since then, he's changed his ways and has become a born-again Christian. This provides plenty of really awkward moments when Hart brings up some issues where he tells a story of Shawn's backstage antics and Shawn has no option except to just laugh it off and admit that he was a terrible person in that stage of his life.
As far as the topics covered goes, the DVD spans all of Bret's and Michaels matches. It begins with a brief segment of how they got into the WWE, and about the next fifteen minutes talks about their matches when they were both a part of tag teams. The highlight of that discussion is how frustrated Bret looks and sounds when talking about the rope breaking during a main event televised tag team match, a match that he thought was going to be historic ended up being so dismal it was never televised (and it was the night The Hart Foundation lost the belts to The Rockers for the first time).
It continues to showcase Bret and Shawn's excellent solo careers, how Bret led the locker room, and how Shawn only worked with The Kliq. This continue until it's time to talk about The Montreal Screwjob. Mostly, the discussion is nothing new, since both men have talked about it at length in their books (not to mention it's been talked about on documentaries, and it has been reproduced multiple times since then). Even if there is nothing new to add to it, it's always a fascinating moment that happened. At the time, it was tragic, but now it's easy to see that nobody was right in the situation. It wasn't right of Bret to refuse to lose the title over demanding more respect, it wasn't right of Shawn to say that he wouldn't put Bret over after Bret said he wanted to put Shawn over, and it wasn't right of Vince to abruptly finish the match and screw Bret (or to book Bret to lose in his final match in Canada). I also love conspiracy theories of whether or not the Screwjob was all part of some grand off-screen story, since there's a good bit of evidence backing the theory, like the cameras not cutting away from Bret when he was air writing WCW and how the Screwjob created the character of Vince McMahon. It all worked out a little "too well" in the end... but that idea isn't even brought into the DVD.
Post-Montreal Screwjob, there isn't too much more to tell in the rivalry. Bret went to WCW where he wasn't used right, and Goldberg ended his career accidentally, and Shawn injured his back and had to quit for a long time a few months after the Montreal Screwjob. Bret suffered from a stroke, and Michaels came back to the wrestling business a new man (reborn Christian) and had some of the best matches of all time against The Undertaker. This takes us to the moment in the documentary where Bret just starts laying his emotions on the table about how he was so bitter towards Shawn and the WWE and how forgiving them and coming back to the WWE helped him to drop his metaphorical sack on his back that he's been carrying all his life. It gets very emotional and kind of inspirational to see these two that burned the bridge years ago forgive each other and become friends again.
The rest of the set includes selected matches between the two. You're reminded immediately of how good Shawn and Bret's tag team partners were, Marty Janetty and Jim Neidhart respectively. The first ever Ladder Match was between Shawn Michaels and Bret Hart for the Intercontinental title, it's also worth noting that at the time Shawn Michaels finishing move was a back suplex. Also, you get the full 1 hour Iron Man match at Wrestlemania 12, which is a classic. Having a DVD with the same two people fighting might sound dull, but the great thing about these two is that every time they fight, they will put on a different style of match.
Overall, this DVD is a great pickup for fans of either of the wrestler, or fans of the WWE pre-Attitude era. It's a great way to make people want more DVD's for the "Greatest Rivalries" line... I don't know if there is a more controversial story to tell, but there are certainly some just as memorable than Bret vs. Shawn.