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African American Lives 2


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Product Details

  • Actors: Maya Angelou, Don Cheadle, Morgan Freeman, Henry Louis Gates, Chris Rock
  • Directors: Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, Full Screen, NTSC
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: PBS
  • DVD Release Date: May 6, 2008
  • Run Time: 240 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0012Z36E4
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #86,291 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "African American Lives 2" on IMDb

Special Features

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Editorial Reviews

The first AFRICAN AMERICAN LIVES revealed the power in discovering one's family history. Now, Henry Louis Gates Jr. will guide a new group to discover their ancestry in AFRICAN AMERICAN LIVES 2. The series will draw on DNA analysis, genealogical research and family oral tradition to trace the lineages of the participants, including Maya Angelou, Morgan Freeman, Jackie Joyner-Kersee, and Tina Turner, down through U.S. history and back to Africa.

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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See all 18 customer reviews
One student recently told me it was the best documentary he had ever seen!
Amazon Customer
A fascinating companion film to this would be Frontline By PBS ; Jefferson's Blood, and African American Lives.
KerrLines
What a joy to learn so much about tracing our roots and finding where we have really descended from.
Barbara J. Ross

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: DVD
If you have followed the PBS 4 hour mini-series "African American Lives 2" this February, then you will want to purchase the DVD I am certain.This amazingly well documented and directed expose of 12 "black" people, including the likes of Pop Diva Icon Tina Turner,comedian Chris Rock,everybody's favorite narrator Morgan Freeman,actor Don Cheadle as well as historians,preachers and Harvard Professors,whose racial identity is disclosed to them through court documents,wills,ship manifests and the newest advances in DNA technology yielding surprises beyond belief to them as well as myself!!!
Who we are is simply not that easy to say.Where we come from is not as simple as black or white.What is being "black" anyway? What is being "white"? What do you do with information when culture tells you that you are one "race", but DNA tells you either way more or the opposite? These are the complex questions that are answered in great detail for these 12 people,identified as "black" or "African-American." (Frankly, this is so interesting that any "race" will benefit immensely from this documentary film!)

This documentary brilliantly is non-biased and quite moving.See how Don Cheadle reacts when he finds that his family was owned by Native Americans!!!! Tina Turner is one third European and NO Native American blood! Chris Rock is 1/5 "white"! There is even the authoress Briss Bryson who has always been "white" who discovers that she has more African blood than most "negroes"!!!! What do we do with such information? Does it change who we are,or does it complete who we are? Henry Gates,Harvard Professor is 50% Irish, and yet has always identified as "African.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By All Red on February 15, 2008
Format: DVD
After 40 years of knowing that I was an American of Scottish descent with the looks and the family tree to substantiate it, my sister unveils that I (we) are one-quarter French! What a shock and also a pleasant surprise.I don't look the least bit French, but suddenly in one minute,I am! How does this change my perspective on myself? Well, can you imagine having been certain all your life that you were African-American and part Indian only to find out that you are actually more white than you are either of the other two strains of humanity? I must say, that PBS has outdone itself this time!
African American Lives,Part One was good, but the ongoing saga/sequel is stupendous.I was captivated for 4 hours (and that is tough for me!) with the indepth look into the racial makeup of such well known people as Olympic Gold Medalist Jackie Joyner-Kersee,The Shawshank Redemption (Two-Disc Special Edition)'s Morgan Freeman, Hotel Rwanda's Don Cheadle and others whose backgrounds are shown to them through the latest technological advances in DNA testing.Not only were the twelve African-Americans involved in this documentary,who have always identified themselves as such, surprised,amazed,moved and aghast at the findings,but they are asked to either reject or embrace what they discover about their lineage.
As I will never see myself as pure Scottish ever again, neither will the likes of Linda Hamilton Rice,Tina Turner,Tom Joyner.Bliss Brysen,Rev.Gomes and Henry Gates ( I have missed someone else-oops!).If this PBS Special fails to win an Award for something, than I will give up on Award Shows altogether!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Markisha Bunn on September 22, 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is another great video to show the history of America that is being omitted from the history books!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sham on July 2, 2010
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
This is a must-see movie for everyone. It highlights 9 African-American celebrities, who's face we see in movies, television, and hear in music, as well as people who're not in the public eye as much. A revealing look into the past of so many prominent people of our day.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By kittt on February 18, 2009
Format: DVD
I decided to have a DNA test after viewing this video, it was very exciting to watch the program's participants discover information about their families...I have been inspired by this video to research my family.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Barbara J. Ross on July 13, 2009
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
What a joy to learn so much about tracing our roots and finding where we have really descended from. How rich a heritage. Greatful for it and you will be too!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Gloria J. Martin on March 30, 2009
Format: DVD
I enjoyed watching some of this on TV, so I bought it to see in its intirety. Excellent for all. Great salesmanship. Would do business with again. A+++++++++++
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Nancy Price-Hobday on November 28, 2009
Format: DVD
Beautifully done! Very Detailed. It inspired some of my family to get their DNA done. We were not surprised at the results. Somehow we knew all along!
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