ALA Video Round Table Selects Notable Videos for Adults 2002

Contact: Marc Sober


For Immediate Release

January 29, 2002

ALA Video Round Table Selects Notable Videos for Adults 2002

The American Library Association's (ALA) Video Round Table Notable Videos for Adults Committee is pleased to announce its selections for Notable Videos for Adults 2002, a list of 15 outstanding programs released on video within the past two years and suitable for all libraries serving adults. Its purpose is to call attention to recent video releases that make a significant contribution to the world of video recordings.

Finalized at the ALA Midwinter Meeting in New Orleans, the list covers three categories dealing with a wide range of topics: documentary/educational, personal narrative and animation. Each of the titles meets overarching standards for technical quality, dealing with either a previously unexplored topic or offering a new approach to a familiar subject.

  • "30 Frames a Second: The WTO in Seattle" Former news cameraman Rustin Thompson pursues the story of the protests that surrounded the World Trade Organization meeting in 1999, offering his evolving view of the weeklong chaos.
  • "BookWars" "BookWars" provides a highly original portrait of the quirky and competitive world of New York City street booksellers, as documented by Jason Rosette, one of their own.
  • "Chinatown Files" Amy Chen's documentary is the first to explore Chinese-American experience during the "climate of fear" that McCarthyism produced, reminding viewers how tenuous civil rights can be.
  • "Dark Days" Marc Singer's film explores the lives of dwellers in a shantytown community within an Amtrak tunnel under New York City.
  • "Genghis Blues" Feynman Lives! Roko Belic's documentary chronicles the remarkable journey of Paul "Earthquake" Pena, a blind San Francisco blues singer who traveled to Tuva (Upper Mongolia) in 1995 to participate in a throat-singing competition.
  • "George Wallace: Settin' the Woods on Fire" Daniel McCabe and Paul Stekler paint a complex portrait of the late four-time governor of Alabama, whose virulent segregationist stance ironically helped force civil rights to the forefront of American politics.
  • "Into the Arms of Strangers" Mark Jonathan Harris interviews Holocaust survivors rescued by the Kindertransport, a pre-World War II operation in which 10,000 Jewish children from German-held lands were sent to foster homes and hostels in Great Britain.
  • "Merchants of Cool" This Frontline documentary exposes the tactics used by corporate media giants to package "cool" and sell it to America's lucrative teenage market.
  • "Napoleon" David Grubin's absorbing biography of France's 18th century soldier-cum-emperor provides an entertaining and instructive reminder of the ephemeral nature of power and empires.
  • "The Old Man and the Sea" Alexander Petrov's elegant adaptation of Ernest Hemingway's classic is a masterwork hand-painted animation.
  • "One Day in September" Kevin Macdonald's documentary chillingly chronicles Germany's bungling of the 1972 Munich Olympics hostage crisis.
  • "Return of Navajo Boy" When filmmaker Jeff Spitz returns a 1950s silent film to a Navajo family, he triggers their search for identity.
  • "School: The Story of American Public Education" Explore school's impact on individuals and society through Sarah Mondale's four-part history of American education. This story is a refreshing mix of personal remembrances, archival footage and expert interviews.
  • "Sound and Fury" Josh Aronson's documentary about deaf culture follows the divisive story of two brother's families, one for and the other against a new cochlear implant treatment that would restore partial hearing to their children.
  • "Strange Invaders" Parenthood meets science fiction in Cordell Barker's whimsical animated short. Roger and Doris's dream turns into a nightmare when a "child" invades their household.

Members of the 2002 committee are: Marc Sober, chair, Enoch Pratt Free Library; Becky Albitz, Pennsylvania State University; Kristine Brancolini, Indiana University; Nell Chenault, Virginia Commonwealth University; Lisbeth Goldberg, Arlington County Public Library; Rue Herbert, University of South Florida; Carleton L. Jackson, University of Maryland; Randy Pitman, editor,
Video Librarian; Rick E. Provine, DePauw University. Notable Videos for Adults was established in 1999. For more information about the list and selections from 1999-2001, visit the Video Round Table Web site at: