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NOVA - Fireworks!

4.7 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Everybody loves fireworks- but why? Behind the dazzling displays and fiery explosions is a colorful past as well as a complex and secretive science that goes back over 1000 years. First discovered by the Chinese, who used firecrackers to scare away evil spirits, fireworks continue to thrill millions each year with their beauty and power. Join NOVA and travel to Italy, England, and Pennsylvania to discover the chemical secrets that put the bang in the rocket and the fizz in the Roman candle. Meet the Zambelli family, the "First family of fireworks," and see the spectacular results of secrets passed down through generations. Watch master pyrotechnicians show how intricate fireworks displays are created. Discover how elaborate computer controls turn a celebration at Pittsburghís Three Rivers Stadium into amazing split-second science. And enjoy some of the worldís most astounding public fireworks displays, including the record-setting millennial celebration at the Eiffel Tower.This program includes material that may not be appropriate for younger viewers. Viewer discretion is advised.

Special Features

  • Printable materials for educators
  • DVD-ROM access to the Nova website

Product Details

  • Actors: Stacy Keach, Peter Thomas (VI), Don Wescott
  • Directors: Nova
  • Format: 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: 1
  • Rated:
    NR
    Not Rated
  • Studio: PBS
  • DVD Release Date: June 6, 2006
  • Run Time: 56 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B000EZ907A
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #191,698 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "NOVA - Fireworks!" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

By Kyle Tolle on August 18, 2007
Understanding the evolution of fireworks wouldn't be complete without a little history of this sensation. Starting with the ancient Chinese discovery of gunpowder and moving through the Middle Ages and into modern times, a fairly detailed study lays the ground work for this entertaining and interesting program.

Newcastle, Pennsylvania is the fireworks capital of the U.S and home to Zambelli Internationale, one of the oldest and largest fireworks companies in America. Using family secrets that have been protected for generations, they are world renowned for their talents in creating amazing presentations.

A behind the scenes look uncovers the exacting and impressive amount of work that goes into producing major pyrotechnics. Launch methods, shell construction, chemical mixtures, and more are explored here along with the use of computer technology to synchronize displays to music sequences.

The creation of fireworks is not without its dangers and manufacturers are required to meet stringent safety regulations. On a logistical level, preparations for events are demanding but necessary and the numerous elements involved are examined in this segment.

Closing out this documentary is footage of different fireworks displays with some brief descriptions of their unique types. This is a befitting ending to the program, in my opinion, and even on television its fun to watch these beautiful demonstrations.
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This DVD is a wonderful exposition of the beauty and breadth of fireworks. It gives an overview of the history of fireworks beginning with the Chinese and up to fairly recent days including such firework families as the Zambelli family. For those of us who are in states that limit the sale and or the display of fireworks, this DVD will fill a need to see them at home and to fulfill
your curiosity of how they are made. Many people do not realize that fireworks is an "art", the
art of "pyrotechny" which is the more technical term attached to fireworks. We often tend to
think of fireworks as just firecrackers for kids. This DVD gives a great overview of the art and
practice of fireworks - pyrotechny. The truly great aerial displays that are professionally produced are just one example of this art. Anyone who has viewed a NOVA production will appreciate this DVD.
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If you like fireworks, this DVD is perfect for you! This is full of fun, facts, history past, and history present. It tells how fireworks are created, the chemical's used, the different types and styles of fireworks, the chemical compounds and salts used, and even the dangers of the manufacturing processes. It speaks of the Zambelli family and other firework makers.

This DVD from NOVA is put together exceptionally well and is very educational. I would recommend this DVD to anyone who is interested in this genre of pyrotechnic entertainment! NOVA - Fireworks!
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