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  • Image of an Assassination: Zapruder Film [VHS]
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Image of an Assassination: Zapruder Film [VHS]


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Product Details

  • Actors: Peter Dean, Joseph Barabe, Phil Chamberlain, Jack Harrison, Adam King
  • Writers: H.D. Motyl
  • Producers: H.D. Motyl, Malik B. Ali, Waleed B. Ali
  • Format: Black & White, Color, Original recording remastered, NTSC
  • Rated: NR (Not Rated)
  • Number of tapes: 1
  • Studio: Mpi Home Video
  • VHS Release Date: August 4, 1998
  • Run Time: 88 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: 0788600222
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #469,205 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

This first commercially available video version of the legendary 26-second "Zapruder Film"--the 8mm record of John F. Kennedy's 1963 assassination, which was filmed by Abraham Zapruder--provoked a storm of controversy when it first appeared on video shelves. Added to the National Film Registry in 1994, this historical document remains a significant record of one of the nation's most devastating events and is still cited as a key piece of evidence in the debate over the truth of Kennedy's murder. This unprecedented release has been digitally mastered with the approval of the Zapruder family. An accompanying documentary, which explores the mastering process in detail, features a short portrait of Zapruder and a fascinating history of the film's official and unofficial showings up to the present. The tape also includes a frame-by-frame analysis of the film, a chronology of events, and additional historical video. This short film is still too gruesome and upsetting for many to watch, but Abraham Zapruder's famous home movie remains to this day one of the most controversial pieces of filmed history. --Sean Axmaker

Customer Reviews

No agenda of politics or theories of conspiracy are extolled here.
John O.
You get 4 different looks at the awful event itself, but the big difference in this DVD vs. the VHS copy is the bonus material!
David Von Pein
The digitalization process allowed for the vast improvement of the original film's quality.
Daniel Jolley

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

146 of 148 people found the following review helpful By Daniel Jolley HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on August 27, 2004
Format: DVD
It is important that you know exactly what Image of an Assassination is before you decide to spend your money on it. The entire focus of the DVD is Abraham Zapruder's 26-second, 8 mm film showing the assassination of John F. Kennedy from start to finish. This is not a "who shot JFK?" documentary - there's no place for conspiracy theories or defenses of the Warren Commission conclusions to be found here. This is a new and much improved look at the single most important piece of evidence in the assassination of President Kennedy, complemented by a look at the process behind the digitalization of the film. There is no real analysis of the film, and no allusion to the criticisms some have made about the integrity of the film. Any conclusions to be made are left up to the viewer, and this video gives the viewer the ultimate look at this most famous, most important home video ever made.

The documentary does provide a timeline for the original film's travel across the decades, beginning on the morning of November 22, 1963, when the meek and mild Abraham Zapruder was encouraged to go home and get his camera so that he could film the passing of the Presidential motorcade. You get a brief personal look at Zapruder himself, a most reluctant of celebrities, including footage of the interview he gave to TV station WFAA hours after the assassination. There are interviews with several individuals associated with Zapruder and Time Life, the company which bought the rights to the film in the days after the assassination. You will follow the trail of the original film to the possession of Time Life (oddly, there is no mention of the mysteriously reversed frames that were printed in Life magazine shortly after the assassination) and, in 1975, back to the Zapruder family (it was sold back for $1).
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46 of 50 people found the following review helpful By David Von Pein on July 21, 2001
Format: DVD Verified Purchase
Although the subject matter is horrific, this DVD is a great addition to my library. You get 4 different looks at the awful event itself, but the big difference in this DVD vs. the VHS copy is the bonus material! There's an excellent-quality segment on "the WFAA-TV interview" with Mr. Zapruder, made just hours after he filmed the assassination. I have several JFK videos, but I have never seen a lot of this material before! You even get to see about 2 minutes of the program that was interrupted before you get into the "live bulletin" news coverage. And the interview is shown in its entirety, and very clear. Quite chilling.

Other extras on the DVD are nice too, including the 1975 "Good Night America" program with Geraldo Rivera, where America first was shown Zapruder's famous film, to the horrified gasps of the live audience members. This "Good Night" segment is quite complete also, with most of the late-night broadcast shown on the DVD.

I'm not trying to minimize the actual Zapruder footage shown here (which is indeed quite crisp and clear, albeit with still a lot of dust and artifacts present that were obviously simply impossible to remove), but for me the prize in the package is the bonus material offered, and it makes this DVD a MUST for those like myself who collect about every Kennedy video out there. Because I guarantee you, you won't find lots of this footage anywhere else!
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30 of 33 people found the following review helpful By William T. Parnell on June 2, 2000
Format: DVD
The DVD version of this product is something that should be in the library of every JFK assassination researcher.
The Zapruder film itself is presented in four different versions including a "widescreen" presentation never before seen.
The documentary section of the disc is excellent and using historical video and interviews tells the story of the Zapruder film from the chance filming up to the process used to make the digital transfer. Also included are the video sources the documentary draws from including the complete "Good Night America" segment in which the film was shown on national TV for the first time. It is interesting to see how dated the theories of Robert Groden and the other guests are when viewed today. Other segments include Richard Stolley of Life discussing the negotiations for rights to the film and a WFAA-TV interview with Zapruder taped shortly after the assassination.
If you are at all interested in the JFK assassination this DVD shold be in your collection. Be sure to get the DVD instead of the VHS version though-for a couple of bucks more it is really worth it.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Kevin Nienhuis on September 8, 2001
Format: DVD
The reviewer from Australia is incorrect in saying that the producers of this DVD (MPI Home Video) cannot be blamed for the three missing frames, as he claims that this loss of key frames was "reported" long ago. Allow me to clear this up his confusion: what the reviewer is referring to are the infamous six missing frames that LIFE Magazine says were "accidentally" destroyed in the 1960s. That is indeed a matter of historical record and acknowledged by both sides in the conspiracy debate (the dark splice is very visible in the four versions of the film on this DVD). But the MPI digital restoration team ALSO left out three more frames that are still in the original! MPI is aware of this and has informed researcher Robert Groden (seen interviewed in 1975 by Geraldo on the bonus features) that these frames will be included in future releases of this DVD. All three are located in the film after the headshot at frame #313. MPI got sloppy and screwed up--plain and simple! That's a shame considering the huge financial investment and meticulous attention to detail that went into producing this restoration.
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