The original version, the short version, was broadcast on PBS in 2008, and ran ninety minutes in one episode. The later version, the long version, was broadcast on PBS in 2012, and ran two hundred twenty-eight minutes in (four) fifty-seven minute episodes. See more »
I was really looking forward to seeing this three part special, however I was really kind of let down. The first part was the best, with most of the old classics represented, then it started to fall apart about half way through the second part, and by the third part I thought I was watching a tribute to Clint Eastwood. I know that Warners was known as the rough and tumble studio that would'nt pull any punches, but my God, does each clip have to push you over the edge? About the time I saw Ginger Rogers getting whipped, I was asking myself, gee didn't they do any comedies or musicals. Lots of down and out people, people getting shot, even the KKK! Then from Dirty Harry on, I thought I was watching a tribute to Clint Eastwood, with some Steven Spielberg thrown in. What happened to A STAR IS BORN -1954, 2001-A SPACE ODYSSEY, and NETWORK ??? It was also very boring, basically just a clip show, with very little inside information. Nothing about how each studio had their own theaters, until Uncle Sam told them to break them up and sell them, very little about the break up of the studio system, and how they took on television. All in all, very little imagination went into this, as I said, besides the tribute to Clint Eastwood feel of it, it was basically just five hours of clips. If you are interested in the history of Hollywood I would suggest these better titles to watch for; GOLDWYN: THE MAN AND HIS MOVIES, 2001; MGM: WHEN THE LION ROARS, 1992; Hollywood THE GOLDEN YEARS: THE RKO STORY, 1987, 6 parts.
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