Weekly Video Picks
King Herod's Lost City (2002)
The treacherous King Herod the Great built a magnificent Med iter ranean port be tween 25 and 13 B.C. and named it Caesarea in honor of the Roman ruling family to whom he owed allegiance. It thrived for more than 1,000 years as a celebrated monument to ancient splendor. While under pagan control, Pontius Pilate left his mark and the apostles Sts. Peter, Paul and Philip visited to preach the Gospel. Eventually, it came under the sway of the Byzantine Christian Empire and then Islam until it was reconquered for the cross by the Crusader general Godfrey of Bouillon in 1099.
Caesarea's days of glory were ended in 1265 when the Mameluk sul tan, Baibars, laid siege to it. When its Christian defenders surrendered after being promised their free dom, the Muslim ruler razed it. It has been ruins and dust ever since. This 50-minute A'sE cable-TV documentary recaptures this col orful history through interviews with biblical scholars and the arch eologists who are excavating the site.
And Thou Shalt Honor … 2002
Millions of Amer icans provide unpaid volun teer care for their parents, spouses and friends. Their efforts save taxpayers and insurers hundreds of billions of dollars a year and help our loved ones remain at home as long as possible. This two-hour PBS documentary takes an intelligent and compassionate look at family caregiving, telling the stories of the caregivers, the people under care and the professionals who struggle with an often misunderstood system. There are on-camera interviews with those afflicted and those trying to help.
Narrated by actor Joe Mantegna, the program shows how caregiving can be sometimes fulfilling and rewarding but at other times demanding, unrelenting and lonely. Burnout is a danger. As baby-boomers face up to these challenges, experts are discovering new ways to cope and reinventing the whole of idea of nursing homes. Among the topics explored are Alzheimer's disease, long-term care, geriatric care, volunteerism and workplace caregiving.
In Which We Serve (1942)
War is often cruel to those who fight it. But we can be inspired by the loyalty of soldiers and sailors to their comrades and to the cause for which they are dying. This Oscar-nominated entry brilliantly captures this spirit. Based on the real-life World War II memoirs of Lord Louis Mountbatten, it begins with a handful of British sailors clinging to a life raft off Crete after their destroyer has been sunk. It uses flashbacks to contrast their harrowing combat experiences with personal home front stories.
Their ship is badly damaged earlier in the North Atlantic, with 30 crew members killed. It then helps rescue the entrapped British Army from Dunkirk. Its commanding officer and enlisted men fondly recall their courtship of their respective wives. Writer-director Noel Coward (Blithe Spirit) and co-director David Lean (Lawrence of Arabia) effectively combine authentic shipboard locations with the use of real military personnel and well-designed studio sets.------- EXCERPT:
- March 16-22, 2003