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Biography - Mahatma Gandhi [VHS]


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Product Details

  • Actors: David Janssen
  • Format: Black & White, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: A&E Home Video
  • VHS Release Date: June 30, 2000
  • Run Time: 60 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000006QJC
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #227,215 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

" His pacifist philosophy brought one of the world's great powers to its knees. He proved that violence is not the only road to change. Mahatma Gandhi's life was a study in contrast and paradox. He saw himself as doing God's work, yet recognized only personal conscience as the highest authority. He was a charismatic leader of millions who confounded intellectuals. He took a vow of abstinence, but in old age welcomed young women into his bed! BIOGRAPHY profiles the small man who took a great nation on his shoulders and changed the world. Trace his rise to power and fearless campaign of truth, non-violence and non-cooperation with injustice that defeated the British Empire. Biographers offer insight into his surprising personal life, while historians explore his remarkable accomplishments. Hear from his grandson, Arun Gandhi, and, in a rare interview, the Dalai Lama reflects on Gandhi's incredible life and enduring legacy. From the formation of his philosophy to changing the face of the world, this is the complete saga of the Pilgrim of Peace Mahatma Gandhi."

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Andrew Parodi TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on January 11, 2003
Format: VHS Tape
I enjoyed BIOGRAPHY - MAHATMA GANDHI because it shows Gandhi in both his greatness and his humanness. I believe that Gandhi's legacy is best preserved by remembering that he was, after all, only human. The sense I got from viewing this documentary is that the liberation of India from the British empire was just one aspect of Gandhi's quest for truth, almost an outgrowth of his inner spiritual battles. I don't think he set out to be "the Mahatma." He even writes in his autobiography THE STORY OF MY EXPERIMENTS WITH TRUTH that the title "Mahatma" (meaning "great soul") often caused him pain because he didn't want to be seen as above others in stature or spiritual enlightenment.
There are several people interviewed in BIOGRAPHY - MAHATMA GANDHI, reporters, biographers, politicians, even the Dalai Lama provides some brief comments (he mentions that deep conviction is necessary in order to maintain a nonviolent movement). But the two interviews that make the strongest impact are those with Arun Gandhi, Grandson of Mahatma Gandhi and founder of the "M. K. Gandhi Institute for Nonviolence" headquartered in Memphis, TN., and Lady Pamela Hicks, daughter of Earl Mountbatten (the last Viceroy of India). Both Arun Gandhi and Lady Pamela Hicks comment on something the Mahatma is not often known for: a sense of humor. Hicks says that his humor was almost "wicked," and Arun comments that the Mahatma got a good laugh out of the fact that some reporters made fun of him for supposedly looking like a monkey. "'Here's your monkey,' Grandfather would say."
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Joaquin Murieta on January 3, 2001
Format: VHS Tape
I viewed this movie as a requirement in my "world studies" class during our unit on British Imperialism. The on-screen representation of Gandhi's personality gave me a finer insight into his motivations and background. One particular element to the story I found fulfilling was the display of younger Gandhi as an educated "British" lawyer. His change in identity was very well portrayed as he grew closer to his people. This video was an absolutely excellent supplement to my studies on Gandhi and imperialism. Gandhi's political success was an awesome sight to see portrayed. The manner in which such a frail old man as Gandhi overpowers an entire empire is nearly miraculous, and his attempts at unifying a very religiously diverse India are noble. Gandhi proved to the world that violence is an unnecessary element to "fighting" for change, and that non-violence can be even more effective. It is not hard to tell why people such as Martin Luther King Jr. and Cesar Chavez, both leaders in civil rights movements, were inspired by the achievements of Gandhi, and modeled their political activism after his non-violent model. I felt that this movie exquisitely portrayed Gandhi's persona, his aspirations, and his accomplishments. I very strongly recommend this film to anyone who wants to know more about Gandhi, and anyone who would like to vicariously witness the spectacular accomplishments of one of the greatest persons in history.
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12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Bonita L. Davis on October 30, 2000
Format: VHS Tape
Frail, brown skinned and dressed in a simple loin cloth, who is this man that broke the yoke of British colonialism and inspired a warrior of non-violence, Martin Luther King, Jr.? We know him as Mahatma Gandhi, Truth's Penetrating Light in a world of darkness. But he was more than that as is shown in this documentary of his life.
Gandhi was by no means a genius but grew up as a boy filled with ego and selfishness as all young people. There wasn't anything remarkable about him as he followed the normal course of an Indian man and British Colonial subject. A move to South Africa and a spiritual experience coupled with political action did some things to this young householder.
On his return to India, Gandhi became a force to be confronted. His power didn't come through an army or pure political actions but through spiritual enlightenment. It is this power of Gandhi which impacts all of India.
I enjoyed this chronicle because it shows a man who wasn't perfect but was willing to experiment with his life to achieve oneness with God and at the same time freeing his people. You see a Gandhi with all of the faults of men but also his work in overcoming those pieces of him that got in the way. His story is the story of India and cleary shows might doesn't make right. What is mistakenly perceived as weakness (spirituality) is indeed a strength. Join with Gandhi in his experiment with truth and see how the forces of evil can be subdued by Love.
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28 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Doug Sandlin on August 16, 2001
Format: VHS Tape Verified Purchase
I consider myself a serious student of the life of Mahatma Gandhi, and to some extent, a formal researcher... I loved Attenborough's movie -- though sentimental in spots, I believe it captured the essence of Gandhi, based on everything else I have studied about him. This documentary seemed a bit obsessed with the "journalistic" need to balance out their overview of Gandhi by outlining semi-deprecating hearsay alongside accolades. Gandhi wasn't perfect -- but please, be sure your facts are straight when reporting! For instance, Gandhi is alleged to have "slept naked with young Hindu girls" later in life to test his commitment to celibacy. Personally, I don't care who or what Gandhi slept (or whatever) with, or didn't (and I believe it was "didn't", per his celibacy vow), so I don't see this as a "slur" per se -- it's just as far as I know, it's simply inaccurate. In several other well-known volumes on Gandhi, his true nature of complete asexuality was expressed both by himself and close associates, and based on his entire life, it's unlikely he would "test" himself in this manner. Still, if you are unfamiliar with Gandhi, this could be a good introduction -- but again, I recommend the movie by Attenborough as being much better, and ironically (for a studio release) more accurate!!
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