IMDb > On the Edge of Black and White (2008) > Reviews & Ratings - IMDb
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2 out of 2 people found the following review useful:

Heartwarming Film!

Author: alexasterio from United States
9 January 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This was a rare look at how a dozen or so former childstars saw their impact on America through the roles they played! This is not a "Where are they now" piece. I think we've seen enough of those.

This film has the stars, who are now in their 50's, 60's and beyond, intellectually addressing that short period in American history when the 3 networks provided almost all of the television entertainment. It was really a rare, and short, time in history when the black and white shows conveyed such high-ideal themes.

It was great seeing how well-spoken all of the stars were! They were allowed to speak their whole thought without being cut into tiny little sound-bites.

This was definitely a unique look at the stars and their thoughts on the impact their roles had on America... very insightful, and very rare!

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Author: gemmamason122 from United States
19 August 2012

I've watched all the old TV shows and thought I knew the stars... but I didn't. Hearing their thoughts on the era was wonderful! I highly recommend this!

Tony Dow was fascinating. He was the original boy next door and he still is. I'd love to know what he's doing these days.

I teach an adult-ed class on contemporary history. I have played this film for the class. Many of the students are too young to remember these series but they all enjoyed the perspective that the former child-stars conveyed.

It would have been easy to fill this show with old clips from the shows. But who needs that? We can see those old shows at any time. But getting the stars to open up like they did... genius!

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It Was A Great Time, and a Fun Trip!

Author: CyberSpacers from United States
22 April 2009

This is a heartfelt documentary back into the 50s and 60s. I'm way too young to remember that time, but I've seen all these shows that the former kid-stars are from.

This is the most intelligent bit of reminiscing that I've ever seen; these ex-kid stars are still stars today, in life -- because they showed how they succeeded through one era, and beyond type-casting, into adults.

Who cares if one was a porn star or another was this or that -- what I got out of this was a very intelligent group of talented, and lucky people, who helped create television history... and put the best face on America for the world to see.

I know some of these "critics" probably have an "ax or two to grind" for one reason or another. However, I for one am thankful that Mr. Lasky (who may or may not be related to the famous Hollywood pioneer "Jesse Lasky") - took the time and the careful professionalism to produce this remarkable, informative and truly fun trip back in time.

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Quirky Documentary... but cool!

Author: titomnndez from United States
9 January 2009

No one "ever" asks these former childstars what they think! It was cool to see a focus on how the old shows affected America... and "why" they did. People today wonder if those old shows were supposed to "realistic" or what. This show takes a nice approach at clarifying how different those times were and how powerful television was.

I also didn't know that most of these stars are currently artists! It was cool to see that Bill Mumy is a singer/songwriter, Tony Dow is a sculptor, Angela Cartwright is a painter/photographer, Stanley Livingtson is a stained-glass artist, and Don Grady is a music composer for Disney! It was great to hear their thoughts and insights in a very well produced film!

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3 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Good And Interesting; But What's Interesting Isn't Good And What's Good Isn't Interesting

Author: criticman2000 from United States
5 December 2008

Measured, deliberately paced, slow-moving documentary about television in the late 50s and 60s. Very well-produced, it runs smoothly and looks really good, but production values can't save it from being basically a rehash of pleasant reminiscences by child stars. Filled with child stars from shows like "Father Knows Best", "Timmy And Lassie" and "Lost In Space", you've heard what they're going to tell you, before. Scenes of them tinkering in their gardens and workshops or playing music in the studio, isn't all that interesting. What is interesting, is seeing what they look like NOW, especially if you're only familiar with their early work. While watching this I made mental notes to buy moisturizer, and that made me sad. But if you're hankering for some formerly famous talking heads insisting that 'television just didn't mirror reality back then!!" you've found the mother-lode, with this. "On The Edge Of Black And White" is far too polite. Some of these guys have lead "colorful" lives, but you'll get none of that, here. Lisa Loring (Wednesday of "The Addams Family") has been involved with the porn industry in some capacity, for awhile; Ken Weatherwax (Pugsley, "The Addams Family") has been building movie sets for a lot of years, but he has very little to say about that or really anything. Don Grady ("My Three Sons") was an Italian American kid (nee Agrati) who was made to change his name to get roles, but there's nothing about that. And yeah, some of these actors are peeved, but those that are, are given limited screen time. This is an "affectionate" look back, and as phony as the shows these guys came from. Paul Petersen, for instance (Jeff Stone, the son on "The Donna Reed Show"), has spent most of his life fighting for residuals for child actors to be paid into escrow accounts so that an actor's parents can't squander their kids' income before they reach adulthood, but he's not even here at all. So, nice effort, but not anything I didn't already either know, or could have figured out, for myself.

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