On September 11, 2001, filmmaker James Hanlon and Jules and Gedeon Naudet were filming a documentary on a rookie New York City firefighter when they noticed a plane overhead. That plane would hit the World Trade Center. They rushed immediately to the scene. James Hanlon and the Naudets filmed throughout Sept. 11 and the days afterward from the firemen's perspective, as it became clear to them that this was the only known footage from inside the Twin Towers that day.Written by
Brian Henke <Cincy43235@aol.com>
This documentary contains the only footage from the lobby of Tower One after flight 11 hit until the collapse of Tower Two. See more »
When firefighter Tony Benatatos is angrily commenting about the attack on the Pentagon, the clock above him reads exactly 9:30. The attack on the Pentagon did not occur until 9:37. See more »
There was a person that was on fire just out of shot, and I decided that I didn't want to film that. I said, "No one should see this".
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The DVD version omits the scenes where Robert DeNiro and Steve Buscemi talk about the attacks. In the original broadcast version, just before the first plane hits, we hear James Hanlon say "It was 8:46 in the morning. That's when this stopped even resembling a normal day." On the DVD, the second sentence is replaced with a line from Battalion Chief Joseph Pfeifer, commenting on how you don't usually hear planes fly that low in Manhattan. See more »
My roommate had bought this documentary and invited me to watch it with her. She's from China and only heard so much about 9/11 and wanted to know the cold hard truth and she wanted me to tell her more after the documentary. I felt awful watching this documentary, it was like reliving the nightmare and it still brings tears to my eyes.
But I'm extremely grateful that I watched this documentary, because on the day of September 11th, I'm sure we all remember where we were and what we were doing when we heard, all of us could only think certain questions: "Why?", "How?", "What's going on?", "Oh, my God!". Almost all the Americans were grateful for the brave firemen and policemen that risked their lives to save others. But I don't think we thought about what they were really going though. This wasn't actually supposed to be a documentary about 9/11, the cameraman was just filming a typical day on the job and they just happened to be a couple blocks away from the World Trade Centers and got everything, outside and in, on tape.
On Sep. 11th, I thought to myself "It's OK, the policemen and firemen will get the people out that survived". To be honest, I thought it was an accident, I was in my junior year of high school and getting changed from gym and getting ready to go to my science class. Someone came into the locker room shouting "Some building just got bombed in New York!", we all got dressed quickly and ran to our classrooms as we watched the first tower burning on TV. Not only 15 seconds later live on TV does the second plane crash into the other World Trade Center and we knew this was no accident. A few minutes later, we heard about the Pentagon and that there was a plane headed for Chicago but was shot down. So many thoughts ran through our heads and I kept on thinking "What are the firemen and policemen going to do?". But it's procedure to them I thought, they'll know what to do.
The first tower collapsed, we knew it, so many lives are now gone, the second tower crashed, things would never be the same. Those firemen in this documentary showed courage, confusion, and strength, the real raw human emotions. They didn't know what to do, they were just as scarred as those other people who were in the towers. They heard the bodies collapsing on the ground from people jumping out the windows. And here I was in a classroom just crying seeing all that was going on on TV. I was amazed with this film and just wanted to go to New York and tell them how grateful all the Americans were for their help. I know they feel like they were just doing their job, but they did more, they were hero's. Every day after Sep. 11th for 3 weeks they kept on digging knowing that there were no survivors, but they kept on hoping and praying. May God bless their kind and brave hearts.
As for my roommate she was crying and admitted this was her first time crying at these attacks. She got to see the truth of what had happened that tragic day. She asked "Why?". I didn't know what to say, it breaks my heart that people can be that evil. "It sounds clique', but it was a normal day for everyone" one of the firemen said in the documentary. No one expected this to happen. Not like that, those people in the World Trade Centers or the Pentagon or the planes that were hijacked, they were just doing their job, happen to be there, or even just was there for a second passing by. They were not just murdered, they were slaughtered, and those hijackers did it with a song in their heart. Then seeing in the middle east all the people celebrating, why do people do this? They celebrated death and the lose of: mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, friends, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, etc. Why?
So, thanks to those people for making this documentary. You truly think about the firemen, policemen, and the troops in Iraq and it keeps your hope up that there are good people in this world. Thank you to all those people, you are our heroes.
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