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  • Under African Skies (Graceland 25th Anniversary Film) (BluRay) [Blu-ray]
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Under African Skies (Graceland 25th Anniversary Film) (BluRay) [Blu-ray]

34 customer reviews

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Under African Skies (Graceland 25th Anniversary Film) (BluRay) [Blu-ray] + Graceland 25th Anniversary Edition (Vinyl)
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Editorial Reviews

In 1986, Graceland sold 14 million copies worldwide and garnered both the Album and Song of the Year Grammy in 1987. Simon and the members of Ladysmith Black Mambazo performed on Saturday Night Live and appeared on the cover of Rolling Stone. It generated three hit singles and it kept Paul Simon and the Graceland tour on the road for five years. Its music was heard across the globe. Today, its music and its reputation still reach generations of music enthusiasts yet so many are unaware of how pivotal that one album was during the 1980s, how it helped birth the idea of World Music and revived the career of one of America s most important songwriters. How it influenced the political progress of South Africa a country divided by institutionalized racism, causing and then transcending years of controversy. How in fact the album came to be in the first place.

Under African Skies (Directed by Joe Berlinger, award-winning director) captures Paul Simon's return to South Africa in 2011 to explore the incredible journey of his historic Graceland album, including the political backlash he received for allegedly breaking the UN cultural boycott of South Africa designed to end the Apartheid regime. Features film bonus footage.

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: Paul Simon
  • Directors: Joe Berlinger
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: All Regions
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: Sony Legacy
  • DVD Release Date: June 5, 2012
  • Run Time: 101 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B007P06DL8
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #32,647 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By ben stewart on July 1, 2012
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
Paul Simon needs no introduction and his greatest work of all Graceland is explored in many dimensions. From anti racism activists to Sir Paul Mc Cartney and Hugh Masekela. You get let into the controversy that occurred at the time and see the critics question Paul about supposedly exploiting African musician working on this masterpiece. You also see short clips of recent versions sung by the original artists that help create Graceland. One for the fans and even the casual observer. Highly recommended.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Robert W. Stolpe on January 4, 2013
Format: Blu-ray
I just saw this documentary on PBS. Wow. I had the Graceland Record when it was first released. What a joy to see the story behind this masterpiece 25 years on! Can't wait to recommend to my music friends.

Friday, November 7, 1967 my first concert was Simon and Garfunkel Show as part of a High School Trip in Philadelphia. I was 16. I think the ticket cost $1.50 which included the bus to and from Frankford High School. I was there 10/7/80 at the Tower Theatre show recording in Philadelphia for another amazing Paul Simon show. I lost track of Paul over the years.

What an experience to return to the story about this beautiful piece of music. But wait there is more... there is the drama around the controversy this Album caused. The politics in South Africa in 1986 were very different than today. As the African musicians told their stories of their experience as much younger men, I found my eyes welling up. I was reliving their emotional experience with them. When a piece of film does that to you, creates an emotional response, you will remember that for quite some time. I look forward to seeing it again with friends and learn more about the African music then and now.

Something lost, something found.

And in 2013, still a lesson about standing up for the freedom of others.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Charles Walton on August 16, 2012
Format: Blu-ray
Got this while at the mall, and must say it is all I expected and more. This is in my top 3 albums all time, and to see what Paul went through to make this happen, and bring these sounds to the masses is just too much to miss. My wife, who isn't a big fan, loved it as well. No this is not a concert, although there are clips. This is about a moment in history. This is about a journey about the music, and getting it done.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By bstdznr on February 16, 2013
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
"Graceland" has long been one of my favorite CD's, but after watching this documentary of the making of the music, I have an even greater appreciation of what Paul Simon and his African musicians/friends went through to bring the album to fruition.

It is also an important glimpse into a time in history and the grim effects of apartheid.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Hope S. Edwards on March 12, 2013
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
It is Paul Simon. What else can you day? I feel that this video shows what can be achieved when colour is no barrier.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By K. Gordon on October 8, 2012
Format: Blu-ray
This documentary celebrates the 25th anniversary of Paul Simon's great Graceland' album. At the same time it questions
Simon's political choices in going to South Africa to record during the U.N. approved cultural boycott, seeking to keep South
Africa isolated and thus put more pressure on the white regime to step down.

Simon's reply is that artists shouldn't be subject to arbitrary political decisions - they must follow their heart and muse first, and
he did more to help raise awareness of South Africa by going than by staying away.

The film doesn't take clear sides on these questions and that's fine, a documentary doesn't have to take sides on such a morally
complex issue to be successful.

But there is something a bit slippery in Simon's somewhat pat answers that seem to be given a pass. And a meeting between Simon
and Dali Tambo, the South African head of 'Artists Against Apartheid' feels awkward and staged, each man explaining to the other their
point of view on what happened, ending with what felt like a very forced forgiveness hug.

Is the film letting Simon off too easily? Or is his very awkwardness Berlinger's point? (even his embraces of the musicians who played with
him on the album sometimes feel like they might not have happened if there wasn't a camera rolling) .

One telling detail, the fact that Simon took first credit on all the music, even though - as we hear some of the original pre-Simon
instrumentals from the album - we realize that many of the songs are almost identical, just somewhat re-arranged by Simon. Taking first
writing credit seems like an act of hubris that the film never mentions or questions.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Dee Silverstein on March 6, 2013
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
This is a wonderful documentary on the making of Paul Simon's best album. It shows the struggles of the South African people during Apartheid and lets us get to know some very talented musicians. Wonderful film. Wonderful people. A must see!
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Peter Z on January 4, 2013
Format: Blu-ray
IMHO - it's a great film. it deserves a 5 star rating. i also saw it on PBS this eve and the film had at least 3 full concert song performances at the end. it's a great story and i'm glad it was told.

to the person who gave it a 1 star rating... you've certainly struck a raw nerve in many of us who loved the film :) LOL

your singular 1 star rating had more to do with your disappointing 'best buy' purchase experience rather then the film itself. you got duped and you took it out on the film.

so all of us here are scratching our heads on why would you give this film a 1 star rating. do you really want no one to see it??? :)

so if you LOVE Paul Simon and his music...wouldn't you want to share it? someone searching this DVD/Blu Ray is going see your 1 Star rating and perhaps not buy the music.

hopefully the buyer will see all of our positive comments and decide to get the DVD/Blu Ray after all :)

check out the film again...if you still don't like it...i'll buy it from you :)
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Under African Skies (Graceland 25th Anniversary Film) (BluRay) [Blu-ray]
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