This fine documentary about the Berlin Airlift tells so much about this experience; I really learned a lot! There are informative interviews with Germans who received goods flown in; and we see footage of former German soldiers actually working on Allied aircraft to help speed along the relief effort! The story line flows along quite well and I was never bored; this is a fascinating tale. We also get a lesson about some of the early events of the Cold War between the United States and its allies versus the former Soviet Union in particular; this serves to flesh out the story quite well.
Expect terrific archival footage, revealing interviews with both Americans and Germans, and footage of top brass telling the press that we will continue the airlift until the job was done. We also learn just how hard it was to begin and maintain the airlift, even with the full cooperation of the United States.
I could write much more but then I'd be giving it all away. Suffice it to say that this is a very educational film that showcases the Berlin Airlift and shows it's impact on the America and her partners, the Germans and the former Soviet Union with Stalin as its leader.
The DVD doesn't come with extras although there is a link to the PBS website.
This may be a brief one hour film but you won't feel shortchanged when it's over. Yes, it could have gone into more detail; but I think this is intended for a general, mass audience and it's probably not sufficient for true history scholars. History buffs interested in the Berlin Airlift would do well to get this and also keep looking for more comprehensive films and books on this topic.
on June 17, 2009
Having travelled to Berlin three times, it was interesting to see this documentary, so I could try to understand what Berlin and Germany was like in 1948. It must have been strange for the Americans, British etc for the Germans to change so quickly from an enemy to an ally of sorts that had to be fed and protected. I read a book about the Battle of Berlin in 1945 and even before the war had finished, the German's started seeing the Americans, British etc as protectors and allies. There were a couple of things missing from this documentary, such as the wide spread prostitution of German Women, the marriage's of Soldiers and Airmen in the Occupation Forces to German Women and if there was any interference with the Berlin Airlift by the Russians?? There was an interesting movie made about the Berlin Airlift in 1949 called the "The Big Lift" which I think Amazon has for sale.
on September 6, 2010
From the perspective of a foreigner who became a naturalized US citizen in the 80s, I can say this was a great DVD; a testament to the character of a country I grew up admiring, a country that has my full allegiance. My only regret is that the DVD left me wanting to hear more from the German citizens affected by the Berlin Airlift -- I feel like there is a part II somewhere that I may have missed. In any event, I appreciate the work done by PBS to make this DVD available. For those who would like to understand the political background back then and the events that led to the decision to do the Berlin Airlift, I highly recommend the book, "The Candy Bombers" by Andrei Cherny.