PBS, BBC’s New Apollo 11 Program Is Better Than Any “Based On Actual Events” Flick That Hollywood Could Ever Create

Courtesy: PBS Distribution/PBS

Eat your heart out, Hollywood. Your over-the-top, overly-embellished movies that are based on actual events have officially been put to shame thanks to PBS and BBC.  The agencies released last month, their own presentation based on an actual event – the Apollo 11 mission in the form of 8 Days: To The Moon and Back, and it is everything that a production within the “based on actual events” genre should be.  That is proven in part through the program’s story, which will be discussed shortly.  The combined special effects and actual vintage footage plays into its presentation just as much as its story.  This will be addressed a little later.  Considering the positives of all of this noted content, the presentation’s average price range proves to be money well spent and will be addressed a little later, too.  When it is considered along with the content, all three elements combine to make 8 Days: To The Moon and Back easily one of this year’s top new documentaries and an example of how to do movies based on actual events the right way.

PBS and BBC’s new docu-movie 8 Days: To The Moon and Back is an important new release from the two companies.  That is because it proves that it is possible to create a presentation based on actual events without a bunch of over-the-top special effects and unnecessary embellishments that clearly were not part of the original story.  The story in question is that of the Apollo 11 mission, which led to the very first human stepping foot on the moon. Presented here is that story from beginning to end without any extra, unnecessary drama.  There are no underlying romance subplots, no unnecessary drama points from when the program alerts happen and no added over-the-top speeches at any point throughout the story.  In place of those unnecessary elements are the actual comments from the crew of the Apollo 11 and from the late great Walter Kronkite coupled with actual footage of the mission control staff interacting by radio with the Apollo 11 crew.  They all join to make in whole, one complete story that provides just as much drama as any other movie that is based on actual events.  It shows that such presentations really do not need extra embellishments to make them enjoyable.  Now if only the officials at Hollywood’s “Big Six” would let that sink in.  Sadly, that likely won’t happen anytime soon.  That is okay, though.  It just means that PBS and/or BBC can continue making the true based on actual events presentations and meanwhile let Hollywood’s take on history continue to fade into history.

The story portion of 8 Days: To The Moon and Back is key in its own way to the whole of this presentation.  It is just one of the program’s most important elements.  The aforementioned vintage footage used to help tell the story is just as important to the program’s whole as the story itself.  That is especially the case when it joins with the special effects that are incorporated into the story.  The special effects are clearly computer generated, but are still worthy of their own applause.  They are not the multi-million-dollar, over-the-top blockbuster special effects that one might see in one of Hollywood’s action flicks, but are still impressive in their own right.  From the shots aboard the rocket during its separations to the moments when the Apollo 11 crew looks out of its windows and sees the stars and the sun peeking out from behind the moon to the very moments inside the spacecraft, the special effects utilized in the presentation prove just as good as anything viewers might see on the big screen.  When those special effects are set alongside the vintage footage of the Apollo rocket launching, the mission control staff hard at work keeping the crew safe and even the news footage, the whole of that combination makes the program’s secondary content just as impressive in its own right, as the program’s primary content and worthy of applause.  Once again, it shows that it is possible to make an entertaining, engaging program without the need for lots of explosions, lasers and other standard science fare.  To that end, the combined footage and special effects joins with the story itself to make this presentation a work that outshines any other space-based flick that Hollywood has ever churned out across the board and is well worth the price.

Speaking of the program’s price, that figure is just as important to note as the program’s content.  The average price point of $18.59 for this almost hour-long program is clearly affordable.  That price was obtained by averaging price listings at PBS’ store, Amazon, Walmart, Target, Best Buy, Barnes & Noble Booksellers and Books-A-Million.  PBS’ listing of $19.99 is neither the most nor the least expensive listing for the DVD.  The most expensive listing comes in at $24.99 at Books-A-Million.  Amazon and Walmart list the least expensive price at $15.82.  Target’s price listing of $15.86 is only four cents more expensive than the noted listings while Best Buy and Barnes & Noble Booksellers list the DVD at $17.99 and $19.61 respectively.  Regardless of which retailer one chooses, PBS and BBC will still benefit from the sales of this DVD, and it is a work that is worth the money regardless of retailer, as has been pointed out here.  While the one noted price does exceed the average, the others are below that number.  To that point, the listings – average and separate – are affordable and worth spending for this program whose primary and secondary content more than delivers everything for which viewers can hope.  Keeping that in mind, the content and price comes together here to make 8 Days: To The Moon and Back a program that viewers will enjoy 365 days.

PBS and BBC’s recently released docu-movie 8 Days: To The Moon and Back is a standout presentation that history buffs, space history buffs and space science aficionados alike will appreciate.  That is due in part to its story, which completely ignores any unnecessary speeches, drama and other similar items.  Rather, it presents just the facts, but does so in a fashion that still makes the program wholly engaging and entertaining from start to finish. The combined special effects, which themselves avoid being over-the-top, and the vintage footage combine to enrich the program even more.  Taking into consideration that overall content, the DVD’s average price point of less than $20 – and separate listings that are mostly below that price, too – is appealing in its own way, considering how much engagement and entertainment this presentation offers audiences.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of the DVD.  All things considered, they make 8 Days: To The Moon and Back a widely appealing work that is one of this year’s top new documentaries and new DVDs/BDs in general.  It is available now.  More information on this and other titles from PBS is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.pbs.org

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Twitter: http://twitter.com/pbs

 

 

 

More information on this and other titles from the BBC is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.bbc.com

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Twitter: http://twitter.com/bbc

 

 

 

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PBS Distribution Adding More ‘Ready Jet Go!’ Episodes To Its PBS Kids Prime Video Channel

Courtesy: PBS Distribution/PBS Kids/PBS

More episodes of PBS Kids’ hit series Ready Jet Go! are coming to the PBS Kids Prime Video Channel.

Ready Jet Go! Volume 10 will start streaming the six-episode collection Oct. 11.  The latest volume features episodes, such as “My Three Suns/Magnet PI,” “Moon Face/Lone Star 2,” and “Water, Water Everywhere/Commander Cressida Story Contest.”

“Moon Face” finds Jet and his young friends exploring what makes it look like the moon has a face while “Lone Star 2” building their own rocket while Sydney explains how Lone Star created the first rockets.

“My Three Suns” features a lesson about the planet Proxima B, which has three suns after clouds keep jet and his friends from playing a game of Shadow Tag.  Meanwhile Face 9000 tries its hand at comedy.  The short’s companion, “Magnet PI” finds Sean trying his hand at magic as “The Great Seanzo.”

“Water, Water Everywhere” features a story that follows Jet and company around the Earth, discovering all the ways and places where and how water is found.  the kids help Sydney write a Commander Cressida story in it’s companion episode, “Commander Cressida Story Contest.”

The other episodes featured in this volume are “Freebird”/”Sean’s Robotic Arm,” “Ain’t No Mars Mountain High Enough/”Treasure Hunt” and “Earth, Wind And Flyer”/”Mini-Golf.”

Ready Jet Go! news, games, activities and printables are available online now at:

 

Website: http://psbkids.org/readyjetgo

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/OfficialReadyJetGo

 

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PBS Distribution To Release New ‘Splash And Bubbles’ Movie On DVD

Courtesy: PBS/PBS Kids/PBS Distribution

PBS Distribution will release the Splash and Bubbles movie Pole To Pole on DVD Tuesday.

The movie follows Splash and his friends as they travel from the Antarctic to the Arctic, learning about the different ways in which life thrives below the waves.  The group learns about topics, such as migratory patterns, food chains within given habitats and the various types of life that make up each food chain through its global journey.

Splash and BubblesPole To Pole will retail for MSRP of $6.99. More information on the DVD is available online now along with lots of games, activities, printables and more at:

 

Website: http://pbskids.org/splashandbubbles

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/SplashAndBubbles

 

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PBS Distribution To Release ‘Country Music’ Docu-Series Tuesday

Courtesy: PBS Distribution/PBS

PBS’ new hugely touted Ken Burns presentation is scheduled to air on PBS nationwide Sunday night.

The docu-series will be available on DVD and Blu-ray next week, too.  It is scheduled for release Sept. 17 on DVD and Blu-ray.  The program, directed by Burns, takes listeners through the history of country music, going all the way back to its beginnings in the 1920s and all the way to the 1990s.

The story is presented through stories of County Music greats, such as Merle Haggard, Dolly Parton, Willie Nelson and Patsy Cline.  The program examines the ballads, hymns and blues compositions along with the noted stories to help tell the story of Country Music.

Along with directing the program, Burns also produced the series alongside Dayton Duncan and Julie Dunfrey.  Duncan also wrote the story.

Country Music runs 16 hours over a spread of eight discs.  It will retail for MSRP of $99.99 (DVD) and $129.99 (Blu-ray), but is available at reduced prices of $74.99 (DVD) and $99.99 (Blu-ray) through PBS’ online store.  More information on this and other titles from PBS is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.pbs.org

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PBS Distribution Announces Release Date For New Apollo 11 Presentation

Courtesy: PBS Distribution/PBS

PBS Distribution continues its celebration of the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission alter this month with another new story of the historic event.

8 DaysTo The Moon And Back is scheduled for release Sept. 24 on DVD.  The new program presents another new look at the Apollo 11 mission with the original audio of conversations held between the crew of the Apollo 11 and newly shot studio footage, NASA and news archives.

The upcoming release features Rufus Wainright (EastEndersMeet The RobinsonsI Am Sam), Jack Tarlton (The Imitation GameDr. WhoThe Genius of Mozart) and Patrick Kennedy (Mrs. KennedyAtonementPirates of the CaribbeanOn Stranger Tides) as the crew of the Apollo 11 in this re-telling of the Apollo 11 mission.

8 DaysTo The Moon and Back will retail for MSRP of $24.99, but can be pre-ordered now at a reduced price of $19.99 through PBS’ online store.  More information on this and other titles from PBS is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.pbs.org

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pbs

Twitter: http://twitter.com/pbs

 

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PBS Distribution Releases New ‘Dinosaur Train’ DVD

Courtesy: PBS Distribution/PBS/PBS Kids

PBS Distribution released another new collection of episodes from PBS Kids’ hit series Dinosaur Train this week.

Dinosaur TrainDinosaurs Big & Small was released Tuesday on DVD.  The collection features 10 more episodes from the family favorite animated series.  One of the multitude of episodes — titled “How Many Horns” — features Buddy Pteranodon and his friend Tank Triceratops learning why different dinosaurs have a different number of horns.

“The Tiny-Saur Train” sends the Pteranodon kids off to prehistoric China in a search for the smallest dinosaur of all.

“We’re Not All Dinosaurs,” another of the DVD’s featured episodes, finds the Pteranodon kids meeting a new mammal friend named Adele Alphadon and her friend Cindy Cimolestes.  The discussions in this episode point out that not all Mesozoic creatures were dinosaurs.

Dinosaur TrainDinosaurs Big and Small is available now.  More information on Dinosaur Train is available online now along with lots of activities, printables, videos and more at:

 

Website: http://pbskids.org/dinosaurtrain

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/DinosaurTrain

 

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Every American Family Will Want To Make PBS Distribution’s New ‘Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood’ Collection Theirs

Courtesy: PBS/PBS Distribution

Late this past July, PBS Distribution released a brand new collection of episodes from the timeless, beloved PBS series Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.  Released July 16, Would You Be Mine Collection is the second official collection of episodes from the series to be released by PBS Distribution, its predecessor It’s A Beautiful Day Collection having been released last year.  This latest collection is another wonderful presentation from what is one of the greatest programs in the modern history of television.  That statement is supported in part through the collection’s episodes and their content.  This will be addressed shortly.  The four-disc box set’s packaging proves to be just as important to the collection’s presentation as its primary content and will be addressed a little later.  The set’s bonus content rounds out its most important elements, and will also be addressed later.  Each item addressed here is important in its own way to the whole of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood: Would You Be Mine Collection.  All things considered, they make this collection one that every family will want to make theirs.

PBS Distribution’s recently released Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood box set Would You Be Mine Collection is another impressive presentation from a series that is one of the greatest programs in the modern history of television.  That is proven in part through the collection’s primary content.  The primary content is made up of 30 more episodes lifted from the series’ years-long run.  The episodes are pulled from as far back as 1979 and as recent as 2000.  The set opens fittingly with the episode “Mr. Rogers Rides The School Bus.”  Considering that the set was released in late July, just ahead of the start of the new school year, it is a great way to start the set and start getting.  A little deeper into the set, Mr. Rogers tackles the subject of the different kinds of families that exist in the Disc Two episode, “Mr. Rogers Talks About Families.”  Even farther into the set, audiences are presented with one of the series’ heaviest episodes in “Mr. Rogers Talks About Mistakes.”  The episode finds Daniel Tiger asking if he was a mistake at one point because there is no one else like him.  This is a huge deal that so many parents have to tackle, as well as children.  The episode also focuses on the less deep matter of making mistakes in general in life, and explaining that mistakes happen, that it is natural.  The whole thing closes with Mr. Rogers showing a tape of how erasers are made.  This is important because while he does not just come out and say it, the focus on erasers serves as a starting point on talks about how mistakes can be “erased” whether they be on paper or in real life.  It’s too bad he did not get to start that talk, but it is there.  This is just the start of how much the set’s content has to offer audiences of all ages.  Mister Rogers also tackles issues, such as pollution and ecology, dealing with negative emotions and even the arts in this set’s episodes.  Between all of this and much more, the primary content featured in this set offers audiences of all ages plenty to appreciate.  It is just one part of what makes the set so enjoyable.  The set’s packaging adds to its appeal.

The packaging of this latest collection is right in line with its predecessor.  It features a brief synopsis of each of the featured episodes as well as the exact episode number.  The episode summary makes it easier for viewers to choose which episode(s) they want to watch.  This is an aesthetic element, but truly important in its own right.  The less time viewers have to spend choosing a favorite episode, the sooner they can enjoy the set’s episodes, so kudos to those responsible for this addition.  The specific episode number might not seem important, but in fact is very important in that Mister Rogers tackled many of the same topics many times over throughout the course of his show.  At the same time, he tackled the topics in many different ways throughout that run.  The discs are placed on either side of two plates inside the case, protecting each from scratching, and at the same time, assuring the case itself is not a bulky package.  That means that the case saves space on DVD racks and shelves.  So herein is another positive in the set’s packaging.  All of these positives taken into consideration make clear why the packaging of this set is just as important to its whole as the set’s primary content.  When the two elements are examined together, they show even more clearly why the collection is another appealing offering from PBS Distribution.  They are not the set’s only positives.  Its bonus content rounds out its most important elements.

The bonus content featured with Would You Be Mine Collection is an extra episode that is also perhaps one of the most famous and beloved of the series’ run – “Mister Rogers Talks About Competition.”  It is within this episode that audiences are taken into a factory and learn how crayons are made.  The segment is a subtle starting point on a discussion on crayons’ different colors and how they come together to make a beautiful whole.  The crayons are a metaphor for humans and the different colors of everyone’s skin.  This is genius and is just as relevant today as it was in its original broadcast.  He also uses this episode as the basis for a discussion about the importance of doing instead of just winning.  This is an all-too-important lesson considering how competitive so many parents can and do get when they put their children into competitive sports.  Stories have run on the news quite a bit even now in the 21st Century, about parents who are so overly competitive with their kids’ sports that they interject themselves into their children’s sporting events in violent fashion.  Keeping that in mind, this lesson is one from which viewers of all ages can take a certain amount of insight and knowledge.  He also takes a moment to remind his young viewers that they are special because they are not like anyone else.  This echoes the sentiment in the episode noted here about mistakes.  No one is a mistake, and we are all special.  These lessons, reiterated by Mister Rogers, make this collection that much more special.  When all of this is considered, it shows why the famed “Crayon Factory” episode of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood is such an important presentation.  When the importance of this bonus is considered with the impact of the collection’s primary content and its packaging, all three elements join to make the collection in whole another presentation that every family in America will want to make theirs.

Mister Rogers Neighborhood: Would You Be Mine Collection is another positive presentation from PBS Distribution.  It is more proof that while Fred Rogers might not have been Catholic or performed physical miracles, he did perform miracles in making this world and its people better, and in turn deserves sainthood.  This collection also serves as another reminder of why television needs more of this and less of the crime and drama that makes up so much programming today.  These statements are all supported through the set’s primary content and its packaging.  The bonus content that is featured with the set rounds out its most important elements.  All things considered, they make this collection another that every family in America will want to make theirs.  It is available now.  More information about this collection is available online now along with lots of printables, activities and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://pbs.org/daniel

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/TVNeighbor

 

 

 

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