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Eyes on The Prize: America's Civil Rights Years 1954-1965 (2010)

Narrated by Julian Bond , Henry Hampton  |  NR |  DVD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)

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Eyes on The Prize: America's Civil Rights Years 1954-1965 + American Experience: Freedom Riders + Slavery By Another Name
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Product Details

  • Actors: Narrated by Julian Bond
  • Directors: Henry Hampton
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Box set, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 3
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Studio: PBS
  • DVD Release Date: April 6, 2010
  • Run Time: 360 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0031WNYHK
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,575 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Eyes on the Prize tells the definitive story of the civil rights era from the point of view of the ordinary men and women whose extraordinary actions launched a movement that changed the fabric of American life, and embodied a struggle whose reverberations continue to be felt today. Winner of numerous awards, Eyes on the Prize is the most critically acclaimed documentary on civil rights in America.

Amazon.com

One of the essential documentary series from 20th-century television, Eyes on the Prize is an extraordinary, grassroots history of the civil rights movement in 1950s and '60s America. Leaving punditry and debate to others, this six-hour program concerns itself with the individuals who were there, who participated on the front lines, who witnessed and survived to tell about the crusade's tragedies and victories. Starting with a pair of mid-'50s heroic actions in the South that helped galvanize black and white activism against institutional racism (actions that included Rosa Parks's refusal to give up her bus seat to a white passenger in Montgomery, Alabama), the series winds its way through the exponential growth of the movement to the passage of the Voting Rights Act and beyond. The epochal battle between states-rights advocates and federal authorities is well-covered, as are the many sacrifices made and enormous risks taken by Mississippi Freedom Riders and advocates of black voter registration. --Tom Keogh

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
75 of 75 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Civil Rights Film Ever Made January 29, 2010
Eyes on the Prize is the best and most definitive film ever created about the civil rights movement in America. It goes from the 50s, post WWII all the way through until the end of the technical Civil Rights movement. There is another 7 hours of footage beyond what is included in this set, and I look forward to owning that half of the series as well. I am a teacher, and I am proud to be able to show parts of this film to my students during my study of black literature. I fell in love with this series in college when my history professor showed us the first episode, and I have been a devoted fan ever since. The interviews, taken years after the events, are so perfectly blended with real footage from the protests and speeches, along with beautiful recordings of freedom songs in the background, I really don't think there is any way this documentary could be improved on in any way. The DVD should be in anyone's collection who values learning about the rich, and often disturbing, history of civil rights in America. I still tear up when I watch this, it is truly amazing.
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98 of 102 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Where is the rest of the documentary? August 15, 2010
I have owned the VHS edition for thirteen years. My brother ordered the DVD from Amazon. We watched the whole documentary and I noticed that the dvd version only covers history up to 1965. The rest of the documentary is missing, I know because I play this every year for my students for Black History Month. My VHS set covers everything up to the 1980's!!! I rather spend the $100.00+ for the complete series instead of this cut version. Please issue the COMPLETE documentary on dvd. Meanwhile, I will just hold on to my VHS set.
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38 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have finaly at a price you can have. January 31, 2010
I grew up during the time of this film. But to be honest, as an White American I didn't understand until I watched this series all the issues that were going on. What I saw was heartbreaking and can't wait to own this just so I can help my child understand also. So many kids(and adults) don't understand how bad it was to be black in America. They got a raw deal and many are still trying to catch up to the American dream today. I believe this is the most important program PBS has ever done. I'm just glad that we can now buy this program at an affordable price. I also hope there is a blu ray edition coming out. I may even buy a copy for my child's Junior High so even more can benefit from what is being taught here. PBS, please release Part 2 soon.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars EYES on PART 2! March 10, 2010
By Shakti
Outstanding documentary that had been sold at PBS.ORG for $375.00 for years! Finally, Amazon is selling the 3 disc set for [...]
However, why the COMPLETE documentary (4 discs) Eyes on the Prize - America at the Crossroads 1965-1985 has yet to be sold separately or shown on PBS since the original broadcast is a mystery.

I am one of the lucky ones who taped and transferred to dvd-R, the ENTIRE series many, many years ago.
This program is what should have been shown during Black History Month to all! New American citizens and the young, who missed the first PBS showing, and those from foreign lands would greatly benefit from the rich history and perhaps understand their African-Americans neighbors a little better.

[...]
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must See Viewing for All Americans January 16, 2010
Funny thing about history. Since it is often difficult to be definitive about things that occurred in the past (mainly due to a shortage of unbiased documentation), there will always be debate and disagreement. The beauty of Eyes on the prize is film. The camera doesn't lie. Sometimes, when people know they are being filmed, they may (or could) "ham things up". I'll give you that, but I don't see any of that in this series. What I do see is real events captured on film. I grew up in Massachusetts, but never went to Boston because we saw on the news where elementary aged children who were being bused to suburbian schools for integration (back in the 70's) were being turned away (or at least met with some degree of reluctance) by the citizens of those communities. I recall, barely a teenager at the time, seeing grown people throwing debris at a bus full of kids younger than me (10 yrs old and younger)because they were not welcomed at their schools. Skin color. Can you imagine a community of black people doing that to a bus full of white kids? Now, if you'd told me about that, I'd always have room in my mind for doubt. Maybe, I could reason, you were exaggerating. When we saw it on the news, we could only watch because there was no debating, no exaggeration. We saw adult white people throwing bricks at school buses filled with young kids. So startling was it that, once we were old enough to drive, and had our own cars, our own money and time to go places and do things (concerts, parties, shopping, exploring, what have you) we never went to Boston. Remember the watergate tapes? Once you hear them, you can easily recognize the president's voice. There's no denying it.

If you ever wanted to know what really went on during the Civil Rights Movement of the 50's and 60's, don't ask or read a book.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Rattlesnakes Don't Commit Suicide March 6, 2010
Verified Purchase
Rattlesnakes don't commit suicide is a very effective line from this documentary. It deals with the knowledge of an enslaved and oppressed people, knowing that their oppressor will never willingly set them free. Thus begin this very thought provoking series that chronicles the 30 year span of the Civil Rights Movement from 1954 through 1984. However, this is not a thoroughly comprehensive piece because far too many figures were either omitted or appear all too briefly, chiefly, Thorogood Marshall, Adam Clayton Powell, Jr., and Malcolm X. Nor would I have you believe that the movement started in 1954, because this struggle dates back to the 16th century and was sucessfully contained and controlled until the mid 20th century. There are fine, in fact, excellent documentaries that deserve to be seen along with this one, most notably are: Africans In America; A Journey Through Slavery, ( 2 ) Reconstruction: The Second Civil War and ( 3 ) Citizen King, worthy of a look. But for the period this film covers, it is unsurpassed in what it reveals. A warning however should be noted that this is a stark, violent document that often show scenes that are very disturbing, but a necessary element to illustrate the brutality inflicted upon a people who were forcibly taken from their homes and enslaved in the new colonies, purportedly built on the principles and concepts of Freedom. This journey begins with the Supreme Court ruling in the Brown-vs-The Board Of Education. From there we are swept along to the mobilization of the Mobile bus boycott and introduces us to the young Dr. Martin Luther King. It is my opinion that the speeches of Dr. King, alone make it a must have in every home. Far too many young people of today think that black history is what was atop the Hip-Hop charts a year ago. Read more ›
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Iconic Series
This is a great series every American should watch.
Published 1 month ago by Wise Thrush
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent series I will be looking for the second part of the series.
Published 2 months ago by Don
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Teaching Tool!
Great tool for youth in explaning the Civil Rights movement in the US. Every family whatever their ethinicity should have this in their library.
Published 3 months ago by Rabbis
5.0 out of 5 stars An in-depth look at the early civil rights movement.
This dvd set is a no-holds barred look at the early years of the fight for civil rights of black Americans. Read more
Published 4 months ago by David A. Fletcher
4.0 out of 5 stars Not The Complete Series
Disappointing that the complete series that takes you up through the 1980's is not available on DVD. Read more
Published 5 months ago by M. Schierbecker
5.0 out of 5 stars FANTASTIC
Absolutely true to life story and actual movie clips. I did live in this period and was old enough to remember. I was a Northerner, but Hell ran rampant there too. So sad. Read more
Published 5 months ago by T. Payton
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome.
I love the product and will absolutely recommend you to all of My friends and coworkers.Have a wonderfull day.Thank you very much.
Published 6 months ago by Michael Fluker
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent learning tool
I purchased to share with my sons and husband. The live footage and detailed information is an excellent way to open the conversation about Civil Rights and show how far we've... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Persnickity Buyer
5.0 out of 5 stars The Strugle Is Over
The DVD enlightens with the truth concering the Civil Rights Struggle, the people that were instrumental in warding off the savagery for a just cause for "Freedom" and who... Read more
Published 7 months ago by Leon P. Eddie
5.0 out of 5 stars Racism Revealed
Eyes on The Prize is an excellent history of the Civil Rights Movement in the South. It reveals the abuse and oppression of a people against those who were different. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Wendell F. Wentz
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