Ronald Reagan – Hollywood/Presidential Years
C Sound: C+ Extras: D Programs: C-
DVD programs on former President Ronald Reagan are being released at the same
time and Passport Video has paired their programs on the two major eras of his
public life. The Hollywood Years is more than just a trailers collection, but
offers interviews and an interesting chronology of his years in the original
Hollywood Studio System. It also deals
briefly with is days in radio and conveniently glosses over his Screen Actors
Guild and House of Un-American Activities tenures.
The Presidential Years does more glossing over history
than all the gloss Hollywood could offer. It is one thing to have persons who are fans
on camera saying how great a person is, but quite another to act like
everything was rosy when it was not. To
have so many people of name recognition use their celebrity to sway an opinion
of history away from critical thought is every bit as problematic as “liberal
movie stars” saying what is on their mind during an election year, except they
are not recording their thoughts like it were part of a historical record.
thing that saves this set from being a bomb is seeing the name people
embarrassing themselves and all the interesting archival footage that has been
assembled. The quality averages out, as
these programs originated on full frame analog NTSC video that is not of the
latest ilk. The PCM CD sound is a nice
surprise, offering a fuller monophonic sound than most such DVDs with their
lame Dolby Digital 1.0 or 2.0 Mono. The
disc offers no extras, but the two programs are for fans only, preaching the
greatness of Reagan to the already converted.
Only they need apply.
- Nicholas Sheffo