Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
|New York - The Center of the World |
Actors: David Ogden Stiers, John Steele Gordon, Kenneth Jackson, Robert A.M. Stern, Mike Wallace
Genres: Special Interests, Documentary
Beautiful images create a fitting tribute
Whistler | Bowie, MD USA | 09/25/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Having felt, like many, that I had seen every take on the story of the World Trade Center and Sept. 11 I wasn't exactly looking for this film. In fact, I only found this film when I paused my surfing of the news channels to see what was on Maryland Public Television. But within a few minutes I found myself drawn deeply into the story. Burns has done a masterful job of weaving the history of the WTC buildings and the broader history of New York as the financial "Center of the World." Poetic, moving and beautifully told, this wonderful film is his best work yet.Since I missed the first half hour when I caught it on TV, I immediately bought the DVD and am glad I did. I have watched the film through several times and remain completely engaged with every viewing and have even watched the bonus material (something I rarely bother with). I am already thinking of who to share this with as a gift. One last quick note, I read one review here that complained about strange cropping of the images and interviewees names being cut off. I can only imagine that that reviewer's player must have been incorrectly set to widescreen instead of letter-boxed and they were viewing on a standard 4x3 television so they lost the left and right sides of the image due to the improper settings. I experienced none of this (the film appears as letterboxed on my standard 4x3 television) and remain impressed with this beautiful and moving film."
An extraordinary film
Heights Curmudgeon | Brooklyn, NY United States | 12/26/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I was there. Half a mile away. Saw the whole damn thing.I was on the street within 2 or 3 minutes of the first plane hitting. I saw the second plane hit tower 2. No matter what you saw on TV, you can't imagine.It was a day of extraordinary power and emotion, fear, sorrow and loss, surreal - the knowledge that you'd seen something as profound as the JFK assination, the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Epic in scale, gobal in impact, yet inherently intimate. Your own personal disaster movie. Even still, This Ric Burns film is an amazing thing. It's just great. I've watched it a dozen times and I don't get tired of it - the writing, the music, the history, the wisdom - the personal feelings of a diverse and meaningful group of New Yorkers. It's historic, epic, emotional - up to the task of documenting the impact of 9/11 on New York. It represents all the things that make New York great: ambition, literacy, reflection, humanity, wonder, perspective. The use of Philippe Petit - the French high wire man - as a linking device...was inspired.A stunning thing."
Brilliant Documentary Film!
David Von Pein | Mooresville, Indiana; USA | 11/14/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This 8th installment of the Ric Burns' documentary series, "New York", is a fascinatingly-absorbing tale of the rise and fall of the iconic World Trade Center.Spanning a full three hours in length, "New York Episode Eight: The Center Of The World", provides the viewer an intense, in-depth look into the planning, development, construction, and sad demise of the famous Twin Towers in Manhattan, complete with breathtaking aerial views of the behemoths during construction and after completion.The story of the complex and almost Herculean task of creating the massive World Trade Center is skillfully and entertainingly weaved on this program utilizing new interview footage, intercut with archival video footage of the day.I like the fact that Director Ric Burns doesn't rush to tell the story at a mile-a-minute pace. The saga of these great buildings evolves at a more leisurely, relaxed pace during the program. The sheer scope of what we lost in just a few short seconds as the Towers crumbled into dust on September 11, 2001, might not be fully realized until viewing a program like this one, which provides many of the statistics and specifications for the Trade Center's combined 220 stories.Also included on the program is a detailed account of the fascinating tale of high-wire artist Philippe Petit, who, on August 7, 1974, walked from the top of one tower to the other, 1,360 feet above the streets of New York. In all, Petit spent 45 minutes walking (and dancing) from one tower to the other, making a total of eight passes between the immense structures. This program shows many spectacular pictures of Petit carrying out his death-defying and one-of-a-kind performance. A performance which, for many people, "humanized" the bulky steel Towers.The final 52 minutes of the documentary focuses on the destruction of the Trade Center on 9/11/2001. During the majority of those final fifty-plus minutes of the program, you might very well find yourself with one hand clasped over your open mouth, still in near-disbelief that this awful tragedy could have possibly taken place on that sunny Tuesday morning.No matter how many times you've seen those planes hit those two beautiful pieces of architecture, and no matter how many replays you've seen of the Towers pancaking down into the street, the events of 9/11, even years later, are still powerful enough to produce the inevitable "Oh My God...How Could This Happen?!" type of emotion within us all when we see it again, such as in this PBS documentary film. It's a tragic event of such proportions that it seemingly will never grow old, and will never cease to resonate in our minds.A more complete, detailed, and heartfelt examination of the fallen status symbols known as the Twin Towers you're not likely to find anywhere. This DVD program is a keepsake and a timeless reminder of not only the sadness of what America lost in September 2001, but also serves as an uplifting reminder of what the Trade Center stood for in its nearly 30 years of existence. The pride and sense of accomplishment in rejuvenating a decaying New York City that was felt by the many, many people who were involved, in any small way, in helping those Towers rise to become (at the time) the tallest buildings in the world, is something that no terrorist actions can ever destroy. And that sense of pride can be felt in this documentary program. This is a DVD that you'll be proud to own, and is one to be treasured for many, many years to come."
A moving, entertaining, ultra-informative film about The Tow
C. O'Grady | Seattle, WA | 08/24/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"You've just got to buy this DVD. It's about the World Trade Center, but it's really about so much more. It gives the history of the Towers from their inception in the 50s (I believe) to the aftermath of 9/11. David Ogden Stiers (Winchester of MASH) narrates it with power and grace. People connected with New York City give their perspectives on the buildings in the most poetic of ways. There are too many to mention here, but Pete Hamill (the writer), an older gentleman who held a top position in regards to the Trade Center (I'm embarrassed I can't be more specific, the guy is a treasure), and Mario Cuomo are among the standouts.
But best of all is the French performance artist who did an electrifying tightwire show between the towers back in the 70s, which humanized these huge, cold buildings (to paraphrase Hamill from the film). This guy, whose name I would have a hard time spelling if it were in front of me, brings a love of life, New York City and especially the World Trade Center to the proceedings that makes his segment the "Center of the Center of the World." With all the French bashing going on since 9/11, this film should be seen by everyone in the United States (and the whole world for that matter). Yes, French foreign policy sometimes leaves something to be desired (sounds like the US and every other dang country), but watching this French man express his unconditional love for New York and the Towers leaves you proud to be a citizen of the planet Earth.
So go order this episode right now. It's historic, informative, entertaining, moving, educational, witty, heartwrenching, and any other positive thing you can say about a 3 hour film. PBS gets a lot of flack for their programming, but they achieved perfection with this baby."