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Category:    Home > Reviews > Special Interest > Beaches > Shore Things (Special Interest)

Shore Things (Special Interest/Beaches)


Picture: C+     Sound: C+     Extras: C     Main Program: B



In yet another top-notch production for all national PBS stations, Rick Sebak takes on the subject of beaches in Shore Things, a 1996 look at why we love to go to the beach and offers some history about various shores.  We see various places dubbed “Ocean City” and one-of-a-kind places like Venice Beach, The Boardwalk in New Jersey, plus fishing, lifeguarding, taffy production, and beach attractions that are not there anymore.


The trick here was not to do a travelogue, especially for Sebak, whose shows are so rich in people and history.  He and his crew pull it off, not being held back by the clichés of the happy beach and delving into the personal experiences.  The question of why people like going to the beach keeps surfacing, with wacky answers every time.  Between the Pacific and Atlantic, the show is very through in its hour-long period in featuring the popular locations that are some of the primest places in the world people want to visit, if not live at.  The more you watch, the more you forget your troubles.


The 1.33 X 1 full screen image was shot in professional NTSC analog tape and looks very good considering that.  Over and over again, these DVDs look so good and have been mastered very carefully so rewatchability is always a pleasure.  The Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo is simple, but clean and clear.  Extras include the usual previews for this show, other national show and installments of The Pittsburgh Series, all with Mr. Sebak.  Additional extras include three sections produced for other specials after 1996.  Revere Beach is the oldest beach in the country, the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk has an amusement park by the sea and the swimming pool Ligonier Beach from Western Pennsylvania.  This is a fun disc that makes more out of the subject at hand than expected and is worth your time.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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