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"Prohibition" A Nation of Scofflaws (2011)

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1 out of 1 people found the following review useful:

Yet another excellent episode...

Author: planktonrules from Bradenton, Florida
19 June 2012

This is the latest documentary series from Ken Burns--the docu-god for Public Broadcasting. Not surprisingly, with his amazing reputation for perfection, he was able to once again get many of America's top actors to provide their voice talents to the shows--such as Tom Hanks, Sam Waterston and Blythe Danner. And, like so many PBS documentaries, Peter Coyote narrates more than capably.

Part Two of the three-part series begins with Prohibition as the law of the land. However, despite some jubilation at the new law, it soon became apparent that there was a severe problem with enforcement as well as defiance of the law. The government didn't have the forces or the will to do anything to interrupt the proliferation of stills and smuggled alcohol. But, most importantly, the law DID encourage the growth of organized crime and many small-time hoods grew to become mob bosses because of bootlegging. There were also loopholes in the law that made home brewing and wine making--all which further weakened the law. And, on top of that, arrests for public intoxication INCREASED despite Prohibition! Clearly the law was NOT working as it had been intended.

Well-written, interesting and highly polished--this is yet another spectacularly well made episode of a Ken Burns series. Well worth your time and about the best film on the subject you can find.

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