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1964 Worlds Fair,the

Judd Hirsch , Rich Hanley    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
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Product Details

Product Description


Fast on the heels of the Seattle World's Fair, New York's bid to hold another fair in 1964 was turned down by the international commission. That didn't stop Mayor Robert Wagner, who stubbornly launched the symbolic 250-ton "unisphere" stainless steel globe onto its pedestal in Flushing Meadows, Queens, for the two-year fair. While including fond remembrances from visitors who reminisce about sneaking in, indulging in first kisses in the Coca-Cola Pavilion, and the like, much of this 52-minute video is dedicated to examining the fair's failures. Dubbed "an old fair in new time," it was criticized for being the opposite of the city's 1939 fair: rather than predicting the future, it floundered in the postwar boom of the decade prior. Shots of its construction, promotional films, and news footage provide the documentary with its visuals, while historians and fairgoers examine the fair that ran the gamut from Michelangelo's Pietà to General Motor's Futurama exhibit. --Kimberly Heinrichs

Product Description

Relive the dazzle, wonder and fun of The 1964 World's Fair. An extraordinary documentary, narrated by Judd Hirsch, that takes a fresh look at the sights and sounds of this once-in-a-lifetime event. Part futuristic exhibition, part glittery strip mall, the 1964 New York World's Fair was planned amid the optimism of the late 1950s, but the Fair's two-year run often mirrored the chaos of the 1960s. The Fair was a brawling, costly and altogether chaotic event, but few of the 52 million people who attended noticed. So jump in that old station wagon and take a ride back to the 1964 New York World's Fair!

Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Not exactly what I wanted. April 14 2003
Instead of alot of video of the Fair itself, this DVD depended upon the recollections of many visitors, who were interviewed.
While it was nice to hear their stories, it would have been nicer to actually see video of what they were talking about. Perhaps more audio of the Fair would have been good as well.
Albeit was 1964/65, I'm sure this PBS Special could have gone back to the News Archives of the time and showed what type of coverage the World's Fair had been getting.
I'll give it 1 star, because it brought back some nice memories, but is was not quite worth the price.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing April 6 2002
By A Customer
Half of the 52 minutes of this DVD is spent on aging baby boomers reminiscing in their living rooms about their experiences at the fair. Then there's the obligatory fair "expert and social commentator". (This guy really needs to find a job). By the time we get to the actual sights and sounds of the fair -- all that's left is the construction of the Unisphere, a shot of a middle-aged couple eating the famed Belgian Waffles, and finally...a few minutes spent inside the GM pavillion. We might have seen more of the fair if those aforementioned baby boomers had showed us their scrapbooks. This video just has no soul. Should be in the dollar bin next to the checkout counter.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great but incomplete Aug. 15 2001
By Andras
A great documentary catching the essence of the fair. Living in Queens and visiting the park where the fair once was, but being too young to have attended left me curious about the 1964 events for years. This film satisfied most of my curiousity. The political background, the cronologic presentation, the highlights of the shows, and especially the interviews were insightful. This film would have been more complete with an extra chapter at the end showing what happened to the pavilions since. Maybe a future part two could include that. The DVD picture and sound quality is very good.
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3.0 out of 5 stars How to make a great Fair look mundane May 17 2001
By R. Riis
For those who remember the 1964 World's Fair with great fondness will be enjoy this DVD while being greatly disappointed at the same time. While it's great to see the Fair again in these vintage films, there is too much time spent on the personal recollections of a small group of Fair-goers (filmed in the 1990s) and not enough good-quality footage of the exhibits themselves. I remember the Fair as a great, exciting, colorful experience - here it comes across a bit as a grainy, pastel, pleasantly-remembered weekend.
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