A touching look back at one of the most beloved and controversial presidents of modern times and the man who defined a decade of American history. Explore the life of Ronald Reagan through newsreels, presidential appearances and Hollywood footage. 2 DVDs. 2004/color/7 hrs/NR/fullscreen.
Ronald Reagan: The Great Communicator
edits together over 100 clips of Ronald Reagan speaking--including television appearances, press conferences, addresses of Congress and the U.N., speeches at political conventions, and even a few snippets from his movie career--into four 90- to 120-minute themed retrospectives: One is an overview of his presidential career; one portrays his stance against the Soviet Union; one pulls together his inspirational view of America; and one is devoted to his humor. There's no narration or interviews with other politicians or aides; this is 100%, pure unadulterated Reagan, boiled down to pithy, punchy sound bites (as well as an archive of 28 lengthier excerpts). Pop-up boxes provide a smidgeon of historical context and there is nothing unflattering (no hint of the Iran/Contra scandal, for example). However, the sampling demonstrates his gift for using stories and jokes to illustrate his political points, as well as his undeniable skill as a speaker. Devotees of the 40th president will treasure this document. --Bret Fetzer