Movie Details

Something about the millennium makes documentarians wax nostalgic. ABC is no exception. With the rollover of the year, decade, and century, summations are in order. The Century: America's Time is one such wrap-up, albeit a mighty ambitious one. Peter Jennings narrates this look back at the last 100 years. From a strictly American point of view, the video starts at the turn of the century, with the birth of the common man, and moves all the way to present-day technology, with the computer leading the way. The presentation is divided onto six tapes. Each program tramples through a dense history with Jennings providing the transitions. Beginning with the great melting pot, a timeline of occurrences highlights each video: the invention of the automobile, the suffrage movement, both world wars, and Vietnam. The video covers the "hippie" movement, the Red Scare, and the undeniable AIDS epidemic. At times, the stories are told by American icons, including Oliver Stone and Eudora Welty. Other moments are described by photographs alone. This collection is an exercise in textbook description with little analysis assigned to the events. However, for the history buff, The Century: America's Time is a gold mine. In Century: America's Time, Vol. 4, the focus is on the "Happy Daze." On the surface, most Americans seemed content. But the nation teemed with anger. McCarthy riled up the public, while civil rights leaders were jailed. This period stands as one of the most tension-filled in history. Later, with John F. Kennedy at the helm, America's potential was never so great. This program traces the fall of Camelot and the rise of communist resentments. At home, a race war heats up as America enters a perilous time with the unending Vietnam War and the end of segregation. Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy are killed and the future seems bleak. Episodes included are: Century: America's Time - 1953-1960: Happy Daze, Century: America's Time - 1960-1964: Poisoned Dreams, and Century: America's Time -1965-1970: Unpinned . ~ Sarah Ing, Rovi