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10 Buildings That Changed America

3.9 out of 5 stars 38 customer reviews

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(May 14, 2013)
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Editorial Reviews

10 Buildings That Changed America tells the stories of ten influential works of architecture, the people who imagined them, and the way these landmarks ushered in innovative cultural shifts throughout our society. From American architectural stalwarts like Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright, to modern revolutionaries Frank Gehry and Robert Venturi, this film examines the most prominent buildings designed by the most noteworthy architects of our time. We see the legacy of these architects all around us: in the homes where we live, the offices in which we work, our public buildings, and our houses of worship. These 10 Buildings represent architects who dared to strike out on their own and design radical new types of buildings that permanently altered our environmental and cultural landscape. 10 Buildings - Virginia State Capitol (Richmond, VA); Trinity Church (Boston, MA); Wainwright Building (St. Louis, MO); Robie House (Chicago, IL); Highland Park Ford Plant (Highland Park, MI); Southdale Center (Edina, MN); Seagram Building, (New York, NY); Dulles International Airport (Chantilly, VA); Vanna Venturi House (Philadelphia, PA); Walt Disney Concert Hall (Los Angeles, CA).

Product Details

  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Pbs (Direct)
  • DVD Release Date: May 14, 2013
  • Run Time: 60 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (38 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00BZYIAFW
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #55,378 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
This 2013 production from Chicago's Public Television station WTTW may have played on TV but somehow I missed it. It's about architecture - and those interested the subject will want to see it - but it's not tekkie or boring, thanks to the host. Every day we go by buildings that are really descendants of new designs that took place during the 20th Century - or even earlier. In about 55 minutes the show covers 11 buildings around the country from the Virginia State Capitol (from which many other state capitol buildings derive) to Henry Ford's Highland Park, MI automobile plant (the first industrial plant building to have large windows) to - what I found most fascinating - the first enclosed shopping mall (Southdale Center in Edina, MN). There are buildings by Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright as well as Frank Gehry and my "homeboy" Robert Venturi. It's fascinating.

The DVD version adds another 33 minutes of videos touching on each of the 11 buildings on the broadcast version.)

You'll look at modern buildings a lot different after watching this show. I know I've started to do that already.

I hope you found this review both informative and helpful.

Steve Ramm
"Anything Phonographic"
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Format: Amazon Video
While not the most in-depth, or the best documentary, I found it was delightfully worth watching. I felt that the buildings they picked were very intelligently done, and they had very concise and helpful narrative.
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Format: Amazon Video
OK, I'm sure everyone has their opinion on what is and what isn't an important building, but this historical take on the history of buildings in the US is pretty good. It is a little old, so you can have a chuckle at the 80's hair, but the background on why we have skyscrapers is worth watching on that premise alone. I believe it's a UK production, so they are a little rough in their interview process, but that also means that they dig deeper than a traditional 'fluff' piece.

Turn off the reality TV sludge and watch this instead. You might learn something.
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Format: Amazon Video
Fascinating. Each example was introduced and then the architecture that was subsequently impacted was shown. I always wondered why our government buildings seemed to be consistently of Greek influence. In addition (and one of those things that you don't think about), the origin of the shopping mall was a revelation - not just in structure, but in concept and idealistic purpose! I have recommended this program to others.
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Format: Amazon Video
Helpful introduction to the topic. Well-suited to those who want to know a little something about American architecture. Good visuals.
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Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Nicely done though slightly inaccurate in regards to Southdale and the Seagrams building. They both heavily borrowed from buildings built 5-7 years before them. Namely Northgate shopping center outside Seattle and the Equitable building in Portland. Many of the things they credit to Southdale were actually innovated at Northgate. Same for Seagrams, though Mies did initiate the ideas he wasn't the first to build them, though the plaza was definitely an innovation to the ideal. Other than that very well done. Especially enjoyed Venturi's section.
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Format: Amazon Video
As an Architectural student living in chicago I found this little jewel of a documentary to be very nice put and informative, not to a "in depht" nature but to a very nice flow of basic and most relevant information. It is nice to see names i'm already familiar with and learn a bit more about them. Robert venturi and Frank gehry's interview were a nice surprise. If you're into architecture or like history buildings watch it, and if not, still watch it!
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Did not go into depth about some of the buildigs. Also did not agree with their choices. For example, when The Cooper Union was opened in 1859 in New York, Mr Cooper left room for an elevator, which was not invented as of that time. Also, not knowing the future design of such a contraption, left a cylindrical shaft to allow for any shape.

Such is the choice for buildings
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