Watch These Amazing Shadows: The Movies That Make America
- 1 hr 29 min
These Amazing Shadows: The Movies That Make America is a documentary that captures the essence of American culture through the movies that have shaped the nation. The film is a stunning tribute to the Library of Congress, which preserves and protects America's cinematic history. The movie starts with a beautiful montage of classic American films that have stood the test of time. The audience is exposed to timeless classics such as Casablanca, The Wizard of Oz, and Gone with the Wind, and the sheer scale of these iconic films immediately sets the tone for the documentary.
The film then proceeds to interview several prominent figures in the film industry who express their love for movies in different ways. Filmmakers like Christopher Nolan, Rob Reiner, and John Waters share their thoughts on what makes movies special and how they have impacted their lives.
Debbie Reynolds, the iconic actress who starred in Singin' in the Rain, shares her passion for collecting movie memorabilia and how it has led her to become one of the most significant archivists of American cinema history. Reynolds is a great example of a person who doesn't just love the movies but also wants to ensure that their legacy lives on.
Tim Roth, best known for his work in Pulp Fiction and Reservoir Dogs, discusses how movies can help shape people's perspectives and challenge societal norms. The interview with Roth is particularly poignant, as he shares a personal story about his father's involvement in World War II.
The film also explores how movies have been used as propaganda tools throughout history. A section of the documentary talks about the role of movies during World War II and how the government used them to rally public support for the war effort.
The documentary does an excellent job of highlighting significant moments in American cinema, such as the creation of the Motion Picture Production Code (also referred to as the Hays Code), which imposed strict censorship on movies from 1930 to 1968. The Hays Code restricted filmmakers from depicting certain topics, such as homosexuality, religion, and politics, and the section covering the code's impact is worth watching.
As the film moves towards its conclusion, it becomes clear that the Library of Congress has been instrumental in preserving America's cinematic heritage. One of the most significant challenges facing the library is converting old film reels into a digital format so that future generations can enjoy them. The documentary shows the meticulous process involved in this, from the extraction of sound to the digitization of the footage.
In the end, These Amazing Shadows: The Movies That Make America manages to capture everything that is special about American cinema. The documentary showcases timeless classics that have shaped American culture, and it also shows how movies have been used as propaganda tools, challenged societal norms, and provided comfort in times of distress.
The film features an impressive lineup of interviews with some of the most recognizable names in the industry, all of whom provide essential insight into what makes movies so special. Whether you're a casual moviegoer or a film buff, These Amazing Shadows: The Movies That Make America is a must-watch documentary that celebrates the magic of cinema.
These Amazing Shadows: The Movies That Make America is a 2011 documentary with a runtime of 1 hour and 29 minutes.