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Benjamin Franklin
rating:3.7

Benjamin Franklin

2002Runtime:0 minutes
This compelling PBS miniseries follows Benjamin Franklin's impressive career -- from scientist and revolutionary to founding father and American diplomat -- drawing on Franklin's own writings and those of his contemporaries. The narrative is set against the breathtaking events in which Franklin played a central role: the age of scientific discovery, the Declaration of Independence, the American Revolutionary War and the Constitutional Convention.

Directed by:

  • Ellen Hovde
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    The Spartans
    rating:3.7

    The Spartans

    2004Runtime:0 minutes
    Of the various Greek city-states, Sparta was distinctive because of the rigorous military regimen it ingrained in its people; this presentation documents the history of one of the most fascinating societies in ancient times. The program examines the militaristic, collective and organized social construction assembled by the Spartan people, from the culture's humble beginnings and rise to greatness to its ultimate demise.

    Directed by:

  • Melanie Archer
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    A Sea Change
    rating:3.7

    A Sea Change

    2009Runtime:0 minutes
    Award-winning filmmaker Barbara Ettinger puts a human face on the realities of global warming and ocean acidification in this eye-opening document of one man's quest to learn more about his generation's environmental legacy. Although he's an environmentalist, native Norwegian Sven Huseby is a grandfather, too. And he's increasingly concerned about the kind of world his 5-year-old grandson, Elias, will inherit.

    Directed by:

  • Barbara Ettinger
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    Mad Hot Ballroom
    rating:3.7

    Mad Hot Ballroom

    2005Runtime:0 minutes
    Ballroom dancing goes from lame to cool for a group of New York City students in this insightful documentary, which follows a group of 11-year-olds as they learn to dance old-school styles including the merengue, rumba, tango, foxtrot and swing. Candid interviews capture the kids' initial reluctance at learning ballroom dance and their transformation into serious competitors determined to win a citywide competition.

    Directed by:

  • Marilyn Agrelo
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    Jump!
    rating:3.7

    Jump!

    2007Runtime:0 minutes
    Filmmaker Helen Hood Scheer takes a look at the sport of jumping rope, which has evolved from a recess activity set to simple schoolyard rhymes into a sophisticated combination of gymnastics and jumping that some expect will become an Olympic event. Following six teams as they train for the USA Jump Rope Nationals, Scheer reveals the innovative routines, remarkable athletic prowess and unexpectedly generous camaraderie the competitors share.

    Directed by:

  • Helen Hood Scheer
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    Frontline: Digital Nation
    rating:3.7

    Frontline: Digital Nation

    2010Runtime:0 minutes
    Exploring how the Internet and digital media have completely transformed contemporary life, this fascinating installment of PBS's "Frontline" examines its effect on relationships, careers, daily life, education, the military and more. The documentary includes a unique interactive element, incorporating the stories of people who visited and posted to the Digital Nation Web site over the period of a year.

    Directed by:

  • Rachel Dretzin
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    A Model for Matisse
    rating:3.7

    A Model for Matisse

    2005Runtime:0 minutes
    This charming documentary explores the friendship between legendary artist Henri Matisse and the woman who inspired him to create some of his best-loved works, Dominican nun Sister Jacques-Marie. The 83-year-old nun discusses her days as a model and muse for Matisse, including her role in what he considered his life's masterpiece: the paintings and stained-glass windows of the Chapel of the Rosary in the French Mediterranean village of Vence.

    Directed by:

  • Barbara F. Freed
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    After Innocence
    rating:3.7

    After Innocence

    2005Runtime:0 minutes
    With the emergence of DNA evidence, the justice system is seeing a wave of reversed criminal convictions. But what happens to those who are set free, sometimes decades after being imprisoned for a crime they didn't commit? Jessica Sanders takes a close look at some of these people in this gripping documentary that's both a harsh criticism of the current judicial system and a touching look at those profoundly affected by it.

    Directed by:

  • Jessica Sanders
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    William Kunstler: Disturbing the Universe
    rating:3.7

    William Kunstler: Disturbing the Universe

    2009Runtime:0 minutes
    Filmmakers Sarah and Emily Kunstler delve into the life of their father, William Kunstler, whose controversial career and high-profile clients solidified his place in history as one of the most famous -- and reviled -- 20th-century lawyers.

    Directed by:

  • Emily Kunstler
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    Carmen & Geoffrey
    rating:3.7

    Carmen & Geoffrey

    2009Runtime:0 minutes
    Filmmaker Linda Atkinson profiles an uncommon husband-and-wife team in this biographical portrait of dancer-choreographer Carmen De Lavallade and her husband, Geoffrey Holder, a choreographer, painter and set and costume designer. Highlights include candid interviews and performance footage that capture dance greats such as Judith Jamison, Gus Solomons Jr., Dudley Williams, Ulysses Dove and Alvin Ailey in action.

    Directed by:

  • Linda Atkinson
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    Larry Flynt: The Right to Be Left Alone
    rating:3.7

    Larry Flynt: The Right to Be Left Alone

    2008Runtime:0 minutes
    Porn mogul and unlikely First Amendment crusader Larry Flynt endures an unending string of legal battles over a long and often infamous career, which includes entanglements with conservative figures such as Jerry Falwell and Donald Rumsfeld. Filmmaker Joan Brooker-Marks's surprising documentary also chronicles the outspoken Hustler publisher's campaign for United States president.

    Directed by:

  • Joan Brooker-Marks
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    Hugh Hefner: Playboy, Activist and Rebel
    rating:3.7

    Hugh Hefner: Playboy, Activist and Rebel

    2009Runtime:0 minutes
    Through interviews and rare footage, this documentary chronicles Hefner's journey, from the founding of Playboy magazine -- and the launch of the sexual revolution -- to his support for a wide range of progressive causes.

    Directed by:

  • Brigitte Berman
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    I Love You, Mommy
    rating:3.7

    I Love You, Mommy

    2010Runtime:0 minutes
    Exploring the multifaceted meanings of love and family, filmmaker Stephanie Wang-Breal traces an 8-year-old girl's emotional journey from her homeland in China to her new home in the United States, where she'll live with her adoptive Jewish parents. Born Fang Sui Yong, she's now known as Faith. But her new name isn't the only unfamiliar element in the strange -- yet undeniably comfortable -- situation she now finds herself in.

    Directed by:

  • Stephanie Wang-Breal
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    Zombiemania
    rating:3.7

    Zombiemania

    2008Runtime:0 minutes
    In this entertaining documentary, filmmaker Donna Davies explores zombie movie fever, which has gripped audiences since the genre's earliest incarnations at the dawn of cinema to its explosion of popularity in recent decades. Featuring a revealing interview with iconic zombie-flick director George A. Romero, this program also examines how real-world zombie tales in Haiti's voodoo religion have influenced Hollywood depictions of the undead.

    Directed by:

  • Donna Davies
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    Rough Aunties
    rating:3.7

    Rough Aunties

    2008Runtime:0 minutes
    Filmmaker Kim Longinotto profiles Jackie, Mildred, Eureka, Sdudla and Thuli -- five remarkable women who staff Bobbi Bear, a South African nonprofit organization that helps sexually abused children and mobilizes the community to fight abuse. Longinotto follows the diverse group of advocates as they meet with families, work with the authorities to make arrests, and counsel victims, using teddy bears to help children tell their heartbreaking stories.

    Directed by:

  • Kim Longinotto
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    Frontline: The Released
    rating:3.7

    Frontline: The Released

    2009Runtime:0 minutes
    Five years after their landmark documentary The New Asylums, filmmakers Karen O'Connor and Miri Navasky return to the Ohio prison system to chronicle the next chapter in the journey of mentally ill inmates: what happens when they leave prison. The film traces the stories of six mentally ill offenders who face daunting obstacles and slim odds as they struggle to transition from life behind bars to life on the outside.

    Directed by:

  • Karen O'Connor
  • rating:3.7 3.7 Average Rating

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    Now and Then
    rating:3.8

    Now and Then

    1995Runtime:0 minutes
    Waxing nostalgic about the bittersweet passage from childhood to puberty in this tender coming-of-age tale, four childhood girlfriends -- Teeny, Chrissy, Samantha and Roberta -- recall the magical summer of 1970. During their walk down memory lane, they reconcile experiences with boys, secrets, bullies and more. Lesli Linka Glatter directs; Gaby Hoffmann, Ashleigh Aston Moore, Cloris Leachman, Thora Birch and Christina Ricci co-star.

    Directed by:

  • Lesli Linka Glatter
  • rating:3.8 3.8 Average Rating

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    Now and Then (1995)
    A heartwarming movie about four childhood girlfriends who, in adulthood reunion, relive their experience of the life-changing summer of 1970, including a mystery death, divorce, standing up to the boys, first kiss, and the meaning of true friendship. Each explores her unique identity amidst family and friends. Beautifully directed by Lesli Linka Glatter.
    - Frances   
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