9/11: 10th Anniversary Edition DVD
VOICES FROM INSIDE THE TOWERS
At 8:46 a.m. on September 11, 2001, American Flight 11 crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center. Within minutes a deluge of telephone calls flooded into the outside world. This special 9/11 10th Anniversary DVD Set documents many harrowing, heartbreaking stories – some never heard before – of love and loss on 9/11. There is no video record of what happened inside the World Trade Center buildings during the 102 chaotic minutes before the towers were reduced to rubble. But, on this 9/11 10th Anniversary DVD Set Voices From Inside the Towers uses audio records, such as recorded phone calls from people inside the buildings – some of whom perished and some who survived – as they contacted family members and friends. 911 dispatchers provide a chillingly clear mental picture with the release of these recordings for this 9/11 10th Anniversary DVD Set.
9/11: THE DAYS AFTER
Examines the texture of life in the post-9/11 world, extending the story beyond the search for survivors, beyond the hunt for Osama bin Laden, beyond implementation of new airport and anti-terrorism security measures. This part of the 9/11 10th Anniversary DVD Set, The Days After, focuses on nuanced and oft-forgotten consequences: of a run on guns, bottled water, gas masks and cash; of Ground Zero becoming the biggest tourist destination in America; of Arab racial profiling and hate crimes; of false alarms across the country; and of 9/11-related illnesses among residents and first responders. Vast changes were spawned by 9/11 – politically, culturally, sociologically, psychologically – yet so much about how we live our lives today remains the same. This special 10th anniversary DVD set addresses the impact in a way no one has before.
MAKING THE 9/11 MEMORIAL
On the 10th anniversary of the September 11th terror attacks, the 9/11 Memorial (called "Reflecting Absence") will at last be unveiled to the public. Included in this 9/11 10th Anniversary DVD Set is a one-hour documentary DVD special filmed over the course of the past year. History presents a behind-the-scenes insider's view, from conception to on-site installation at Ground Zero. Key players share their creative journey, along with the staggering challenge of translating elegant ideas into reality, as they solve problems on the fly, invent ingenious techniques, and race against the clock, so that the Memorial, in all its simple grandeur, can open on 9/11/11. Get this 9/11 10th Anniversary DVD Set in your collection – you never know who you might need to educate in the future. As it has been said, "History repeats itself." It's up to those of us who remember to make sure that doesn't happen this time.
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Used for a Senior Men's Church Group and for Youth Group
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This review covers one of the three documentaries on the set, "9/11: The Days After".
In much the same way that "102 Minutes That Changed America" captured the raw emotion, unsettling/surreal feelings and raw anger that was present in that brief timespan, "9/11: The Days After" accurately captures the cultural zeitgeist of the immediate period afterwards.
The documentary is, like its predecessor, almost entirely composed of raw footage from a variety of participants and sources. This time, however, the footage is comprised of snippets from around the country that document its citizens' efforts to rebuild and try to understand the severity of what happened.
The parts focusing on lesser-known aspects of the tragedy - the buildings around the area that were destroyed or damaged by the explosions, the focus on ordinary people banding together and working to assist the front-line rescue workers, the role of search-and-rescue dogs, the media's response - provide the most compelling material in this documentary. You'll see footage of a reporter interviewing families of missing Cantor-Fitzgerald employees, members of an Islamic centre beside themselves with fear of retaliation from the public, mournful street performers playing American anthems, patriotic blood donees on the other side of the country and more.
That said, not all of the documentary works. Unlike 102 Minutes, the documentary uses title cards in an attempt to make the audience better connect with certain themes, but it falls flat, as the footage doesn't need any supporting opinion or focus. Likewise, a couple of audio narrations from media outlets doesn't do much to bolster the impact of the footage.
Also, the documentary feels very bipolar at times, jumping from moments of abject sadness to upbeat patriotism. Whereas 102 Minutes had brief moments of levity and ironic humor in the midst of tragedy, the impact in The Days After comes off as schizophrenic at best.
The documentary also devotes the last 20 minutes of its runtime to a "flash-forward" narrative, which goes out of its way to evoke the nation's anger and the changing circumstances of American security through media narration and a dissonant, almost-sinister soundtrack. I wish they had just cut the last twenty minutes out and truncated the ending with the "montage", and stuck to the final clip of the balloons being released.
That said, 9/11: The Days After is a compelling and thought-provoking companion piece that accurately captures the mood of the immediate period after the event, and is well worth a watch for anyone looking to understand the feeling of that time period.