Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|Magnificent Voyage of Christopher Columbus|
Directors: Sarah Holt, Steve Audette, Daniel McCabe, Zvi Dor-Ner
Genres: Television, Educational, Documentary
Studio: Wgbh Wholesale Release Date: 01/29/2008 Run time: 120 minutes
How It All Began
J. S. Kaminski | Aberdeen, NJ United States | 11/24/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The Age of Discovery was in its infancy when Columbus undertook that first fateful voyage in 1492. As most people know the basic story, the filmmakers decided to focus on some of the details of the event. How detailed? The entire first hour of the program is devoted to the journey across the Atlantic and how it came to be. Besides the lobbying done by Columbus himself (he had been trying for years to get a sponsor), you will also learn that many of the sailors who were to make the trip refused to go until a respected local seaman named Martin Pinzon and his brothers joined the expedition. 500 years later, Pinzon is still revered in Spain, so much so that townspeople of his village regard him as the "true" hero of 1492, have a statue erected in his honor, and celebrate "Pinzon Day" in April instead of Columbus Day in October. (Pinzon, incidentally, would later mutiny after reaching North America and go off with the Pinta in search of treasure. He rejoined Columbus only days before Columbus was set to return to Spain.) Other interesting details emerge, like the fact that there were no professional cooks on board - each man took his turn whipping something up for the crew. And while it seems to be a novel idea, I'm sure not all of the men were culinarily gifted, probably making for some interesting dinners on the high seas...
The second half of the show follows Columbus as he travels from island to island looking for the great civilizations and treasures he expected to find. From San Salvador to Cuba to Hispaniola, each time he was disappointed. Much of the story discussed during this section is not new - besides the frustration of not finding the Orient, other topics include: how the natives were treated, the effect of European diseases upon them, why African slaves were used to work the new plantations, and the fact that some venereal diseases were brought back to Europe as a result of this trip. All important, of course, but also mostly things you most likely already know.
In summation, this was a good program. Whether or not you are happy with Columbus for beginning the Age of Discovery (native peoples, of course, are not), the importance of this trip and its aftermath cannot be disputed. Columbus stumbled upon a new discovery that, in short order, would change the course of world events."
History comes alive
M. E. McNeill | Rowan County, KY USA | 11/21/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"A recreation of Columbus' first journey gives you insight into his voyage across the uncharted sea in 1492. I'm using it with my children as we study American History. Educational and entertaining."