It began as a border dispute, but soon escalated into a 16-month conflict that transformed a continent. This critically acclaimed documentary series explores the events surrounding the ... See full summary »




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Series cast summary:
Brian Schmeck ...
 Dragoon Sergeant (uncredited) (1 episode, 1998)


It began as a border dispute, but soon escalated into a 16-month conflict that transformed a continent. This critically acclaimed documentary series explores the events surrounding the conflict between two neighboring nations struggling for land, power and identity. In the war, Mexico lost almost half of its national territory -- the present Southwest from Texas to California -- to the United States. Although the war lasted only two years, its outcome not only transformed the boundaries of these neighboring countries, but it also shifted the balance of world powers and shaped the destinies of each nation. The four segments are: [1] Neighbors and strangers; [2] War for the borderlands; [3] The hour of sacrifice; [4] The fate of nations. This program is the first to study both sides of the conflict, presenting a historical panorama filled with unforgettable characters such as Mexican President Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna, General Zachary Taylor, and Winfield Scott. Written by Fiona Kelleghan <>

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The U.S.-Mexican War, 1846-1848  »

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Better than nothing--but I'd love to see a better documentary about this war.
27 February 2015 | by (Bradenton, Florida) – See all my reviews

The quality and focus of this documentary about the Us-Mexican War left me very cold. A lot of this is probably because I am a US history teacher and I didn't agree with a lot of the ways the film was told. It had a serious agenda, though all documentaries have an agenda--as do all history teachers. But this one was more transparent than others.

As far as the film's quality goes, this program appears to have been done on cheap videotape and lacks the nice look of Ken Burns' PBS documentaries. Instead, it looks like it's CLOSE but never quite nice enough.

The film mostly takes the tact of explaining why the US sucked back in the 1840s and how the Mexicans were just poor victims---an incredibly simplistic way to describe this war. Well, history is usually not THAT easy--few wars are. While I would agree that the US was hoping for war, it isn't like the Mexicans didn't have their own part in losing the war. The film makes it sound again and again like 'those bad Americans'--which has a bit of truth. But you could also just as easily say 'that incredibly inept and stupid Mexican government who helped instigate the war as well'. Yes, the US wanted war but Mexico did a lot to initiate the war-- they were not just passive peace-loving victims waiting to be attacked. Additionally, on paper, Mexico SHOULD have won the war--and explaining why SHOULD have been dealt with in the film. They had a larger and better outfitted army and they were fighting on their home turf. And yet, the way the show tells it, it was just lost because the Americans were so bad--and the Mexicans tried SO hard to stop them. many cases the Mexican army was easily routed and the generals were completely inept. A VERY different telling of the war, that's for sure. But I am not excusing expansionism and the abuse of the notion of manifest destiny--but wars are generally not just one country's fault and are so much more complex than this show makes this one out to be. This one is so filled with an anti-US bias (a popular notion in our recent history actually) that it almost seemed like a joke. Instead the film should have looked at both sides, looked at what both sides thought and all the factors leading to war and leading to its completion. This one generally fails in these areas.

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