Prohibition (2011)

TV Mini-Series  -  Documentary | History
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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 709 users  
Reviews: 9 user | 8 critic

The story of the American activist struggle against the influence of alcohol, climaxing in the failed early 20th century nationwide era when it was banned.

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Won 1 Primetime Emmy. Another 3 nominations. See more awards »





Series cast summary:
(3 episodes, 2011)
(3 episodes, 2011)
 Eliza Hackett (3 episodes, 2011)
Kevin Conway
(3 episodes, 2011)
 Himself / ... (3 episodes, 2011)
(3 episodes, 2011)
 George Remus (3 episodes, 2011)
 Himself (3 episodes, 2011)
 Himself (3 episodes, 2011)
(3 episodes, 2011)
 HL Mencken (3 episodes, 2011)
 Himself (3 episodes, 2011)
(3 episodes, 2011)
(3 episodes, 2011)
(3 episodes, 2011)
(3 episodes, 2011)
(3 episodes, 2011)
(3 episodes, 2011)
(3 episodes, 2011)
Noah Feldman ...
 Himself (2 episodes, 2011)
Catherine Gilbert Murdock ...
 Herself (2 episodes, 2011)
Pete Hamill ...
 Himself (2 episodes, 2011)
Michael Lerner ...
 Himself (2 episodes, 2011)
William Leuchtenburg ...
 Himself (2 episodes, 2011)
Martin Marty ...
 Himself (2 episodes, 2011)
 Himself (2 episodes, 2011)
Jack Roche ...
 Himself (2 episodes, 2011)
John Paul Stevens ...
 Himself (2 episodes, 2011)


Throughout American history, heavy alcohol consumption has been a pervasive part of its national social character. However in the 1800s, a growing Temperance movement arose determined to oppose the destructive habit by any means necessary. This series tells the story of this crusade until it achieved its ultimate goal of passing the 18th Amendment of the US Constitution which imposed prohibition. After that victory, the series covers this social reform's disastrous unintended consequences that encouraged clandestine drinking and organized crime while undermining civil liberties and society's respect for the law in ways that still reverberate today. Written by Kenneth Chisholm (

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


How did a nation founded on rights ever go so wrong?



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Release Date:

2 October 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Prohibition  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

, ,  »
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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
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Did You Know?


Referenced in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #20.20 (2011) See more »

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User Reviews

I'll Drink To That!
14 December 2013 | by (New Zealand) – See all my reviews

What's this? America, a nation of drunkards? Impossible!

Through 100s of vintage photographs and newsreel footage, plus interviews with historians and celebrity narration by Peter Coyote, this well-researched, often-revealing 3-part documentary gives the viewer an in-depth, up-close look at the sheer preposterousness of "Prohibition".

This documentary clearly shows how the likes of "Prohibition" (which was strictly enforced for 13 years, from 1920 - 1933) limited human freedom and turned millions of otherwise law-abiding American citizens into literal criminals (as well as two-faced hypocrites) overnight.

Though President Woodrow Wilson (a Democratic) vetoed Congress for imposing the 18th Amendment on the country's taxpayers he was inevitably over-ruled and "Prohibition" prevailed throughout the terms of the following 3 presidents, Warren Harding, Calvin Coolidge, Herbert Hoover (all Republicans) until Franklin D. Roosevelt (a Democratic) had it promptly revoked and abolished upon his election to presidency in 1933.

To think that such a disastrous act of folly such as "Prohibition" could actually go into effect and exist for 13 years (in the 20th Century) truly boggles the common-sense thinking of a rational mind. But, it did. And, boy, did it ever create an utter, nation-wide mess of nonsense (that was clearly destined for failure) like nothing anyone had ever experienced before.

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Paralells to drug-prohibition Torgeir-6
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Who is the main narrator? RobRoy-5
Soundtrack princessfaz
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