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History: Life In Roman Britain (Video)

Caught a BBC write-up on this Roman Britain history animation video. Intriguing – both that the animators/producers chose to mix in brown-skinned characters as something other than slave-level AND that there was much Twitter beef about the historical accuracy of including Black people in the mix. Well, that second part is not that ‘intriguing’ as you KNOW someone is gonna hate when folks give Black people anywhere near a fair shake.

Come on. Why can’t haters skip the arguments (which they just might lose, seeing some scholars clap back that there were Brit Blacks back then)? To historical accuracy… would this clip’s detractors argument against White actress Elizabeth Taylor playing Cleopatra or all the non-Native players of Native Americans in the ‘classic’ movies? Want to go deeper? Okay, anyone want to tackle the ‘accuracy’ of Tom Cruise playing a White American Army officer who becomes the bad-azz sword-swinging ‘Last Sumerai’ in a year or so?

Yeah. Just watch the cartoon. LISTEN to the content. Maybe learn something about Britannia back in the day.

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Google Doodles ‘The 44th Anniversary Of The Birth Of Hip-Hop’

So dope! I hope it still works…

I was playing with this Hip-Hop Birthday Google Doodle widget thing Friday and was getting it in, thanks to some snazzy app ware and on point tutelage from Hip-Hop icon Fab 5 Freddy. Watch, learn, play, enjoy. I certainly am!

(Shout to the homie Demetria for this epic share!)

@ojones1

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American Experience: Last Days in Vietnam (Documentary Trailer)

Documentarian Rory Kennedy gives us an in-depth look at the final days of the American presence in Saigon. It’s a story where simply following orders would play opposite to doing the right thing. And what do you think heroes do? Could those soldiers and support personnel have lived with themselves getting out safely while leaving South Vietnamese in harm’s way? Even if ordered to do so?

In April of 1975, the North Vietnamese Army was closing in on Saigon as South Vietnamese resistance was crumbling. Approximately 5,000 Americans remained with roughly 24 hours to get out. Their South Vietnamese allies, co-workers, and friends faced certain imprisonment and possible death if they remained behind. With no official evacuation plan in place, the clock ticking, and the city under fire, a number of heroic Americans took matters into their own hands, engaging in unsanctioned and often makeshift operations in a desperate effort to save as many people as possible. In those last days in Vietnam, 135,000 men, women and children managed to escape.
– American Experience PBS

Orders be damned!

LAST DAYS IN VIETNAM (NETFLIX)

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Ken Burns Covers ‘The War’ In This PBS Documentary (Mini-Series Trailer)

We posted a World War I era documentary days ago, got several recent Ken Burns documentary posts – one about the Civil War. But how about Burns taking us to and through World War II? Yep, got that for you. Well, Netflix does. But we have the trailer embedded above.

THE WAR, a seven-part series directed and produced by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, tells the story of the Second World War through the personal accounts of a handful of men and women from four quintessentially American towns. The series explores the most intimate human dimensions of the greatest cataclysm in history – a worldwide catastrophe that touched the lives of every family on every street in every town in America – and demonstrates that in extraordinary times, there are no ordinary lives.
– PBS

KEN BURNS’ THE WAR (NETFLIX)

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Ken Burns’ “Prohibition” Documentary For PBS Is On Netflix (Trailer)

What a stupid idea it was – that people thought you could actually get away with this. That you could actually ban alcohol… It’s a preposterous idea.

We now have movies and shows like “The Untouchables” and “Boardwalk Empire” to show us just how crazy alcohol prohibition legislation and enforcement was in America. Of course, NOW we see it was doomed to fail. But when the nation was ‘in it’ and trying to ‘legislate morality,’ the government and people who believed taking sinful booze out of society was in its best interest, people who did not agree (and those who sold and used the then illegal substance) were criminalized.

We are going through something similar now. You see where I am going right? I’m sure Ken Burns thought about it, too. You get it yet?

Okay, watch the trailer and everywhere alcohol is referenced, insert marijuana. Hmmmm.

Should be good watching. Catch the PBS doc on Netflix anytime!

KEN BURNS PROHIBITION (NETFLIX)

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Learn About A Pivotal Gallipoli Campaign Of World War I (Documentary Trailer)

Netflix is the place to experience history. Not all the way sure of what draws me to war epics and documentaries, but this trailer is making me think it is time for me to catch another. Want to learn more about Gallipoli, too? Got the Netlfix link at the end.

An epic reconstruction of the battle that changed nations forever: a film of spectacular visual sweep and great emotional power.

It all began as a demonstration of strength against the Ottoman Empire by Great Britain and her allies. It became one of the largest landing operations in history and one of the bloodiest and most controversial battles of the First World War. The campaign affected Turkey, Australia and New Zealand profoundly.

– Ronin Films

GALLIPOLI (NETFLIX)

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The Titanic’s Final Mystery: What Really Caused The Unsinkable Ship To Sink? (Documentary Trailer)

Somewhere between that ‘not even God could sink this ship’ braggadocious blasphemy and somebody drunk or sleep on post… that’s my guess for what tore up the Titanic. I mean, come on maaaan, icebergs are big af and pretty slow, right? Cannot sell me on that it-came-outta-nowhere guff!

Get a sneak peek of the new scientific evidence that will blow apart the myths and forever change the way you look at the Titanic tragedy.
– Smithsonian Channel

Another great documentary you can find on Netflix and the Smithsonian Channel, of course.

TITANIC’S FINAL MYSTERY (NETFLIX)

@ojones1

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Documentary Filmmaker John Borowski Brings Us The Full Story Of “America’s First Serial Killer” (Trailer)

TORTURE CHAMBERS? VATS OF ACID? SECRET PASSAGEWAYS?? This muthaf*cker here! It’s worth watching this documentary to see how (or if) they caught his twisted azz!

At the height of his criminal career, the infamous Dr. H.H. Holmes designed his castle of horrors in Chicago, where he rented rooms to unsuspecting victims visiting the 1893 World’s Fair. Further benefiting from his victims, Holmes sold their skeletons to local medical schools.

The first ever feature-length film depicting the entire life of Herman Mudgett, alias H.H. Holmes.

– John Borowski

Check out the trailer. Chilling music included for effect. Catch the full documentary on Netflix.

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Acclaimed Documentarian Ken Burns Presents “The Civil War” (Trailer)

Ken Burns is a gift to the world, always putting out great documentary films we can see on PBS for free! But you do have to catch them. Well, if you have Netflix, catching the Burns documentary, “The Civil War,” just got a lot easier.

KEN BURNS: THE CIVIL WAR (NETFLIX)

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A Mix Of Pride And Shame: Ken Burns The History Of “The West” To Life (Video)

The legendary documentary film producer Ken Burns brings us the real story of “The West” in eight parts for PBS America. Might be able to get to see this on-demand from your local cable provider. You can definitely see it on Netflix.

The series explores the region from the times of the earliest Native Americans to the 20th century. Monday’s episode, The People (to 1806), looks back to the emergence of a new world with the arrival of the first Europeans. On Tuesday, Empire upon the Trails (1806- 1848) tells the story of the Americans who headed west, following the fur trade into the mountains, fighting for self-determination in Texas or seeking a better life along the Oregon Trail. In Speck of the Future (1848-56) on Wednesday, the landscape changes dramatically with the discovery of gold in California. The Gold Rush brings the whole world to the West as prospectors scramble for a share, littering the hills with mining towns and creating the West’s first metropolis. But in the push to strike it rich, many are violently displaced. Conflict comes to the West in Thursday’s episode, Death Runs Riot (1856-68). In Utah, federal troops march against Mormon polygamy while along the Rio Grande oppressed Mexican Americans rebel. The war between North and South unleashes brute savagery in the West, leaving behind an army prepared for total war against the native peoples of the plains.
– PBS America

@ojones1

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Centuries Ago, A “Witch Hunt” Was Not A Metaphor. It Was State-Sanctioned Murder (Documentary Trailer)

For all the things we can say about living in society today… at LEAST “witchcraft” is no longer a crime (and look above to see why the quote marks were necessary; lots of room for interpretation in those ‘laws’ that can get someone f*ck*d UP)! Of course, there is still enough frivolous prosecution and unfair persecution today to go around twice.

Historian Suzannah Lipscomb investigates the witch hunts that plagued Britain in the 17th century, examining common myths about their origin.
– Netflix

A Channel 5 two-part documentary that you can catch on Netflix (no chill).

WITCH HUNT: A CENTURY OF MURDER (NETFLIX)

@ojones1

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History: Learn About The 1920s In America, In Less Than An Hour, In Full Color (Video)

The Roaring 20’s… the decade before The Great Depression… The time of Al Capone and Prohibition (like on “Boardwalk Empire”). Heard of it? Sure you have. But how much have you went and learned? It’s a lot of ground to cover in American History. Might be easier, even more engaging, if someone made a documentary about the era and ‘brought it to you live’ (like Mobb Deep, so to speak).

The 1920s was an era of vibrant times and colorful characters. For the first time, we present the Roaring ’20s in color, from Ford’s assembly line to Charles Lindbergh’s transatlantic flight and from speakeasies to New York’s Wall Street.
– Smithsonian Channel

“America in Color: The 1920s.” Like a history class you won’t wanna ditch. Click the pic above and watch. You’re welcome.

(Recognize narration in this by Showtime’s own “Ray Donovan”Liev Schreiber.)

@ojones1

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Recreating The Golden Raft of El Dorado (Documentary Segment)

Nice one, Smithsonian Channel. And here I thought El Dorado was just a wack azz character on Superfriends from the 1980s. But naaah son, the Golden City must have been something to see. However, since that is not possible (because, ‘LOST City Of Gold’)… we gain insight from observing how a relic believed to be from there was most likely crafted.

It’s not just the golden raft’s ties to the legend of El Dorado that make it impressive. The complicated method that was used to craft it reveals the advanced techniques of the Muisca people.
– Smithsonian Channel

Columbian history, world history, ready for you to view above. This is but a portion of “Secrets: Golden Raft Of El Dorado” – the full-length documentary available now at The Smithsonian Channel (linked here and after the jump).

@ojones1

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Were There Really “Samurai Headhunters?” (Researchers Say Yes) [Documentary Trailer]

Knights of the Far East, we see the Samurai as honorable protectors of their traditions, their ordained rulers, and the people of Japan. But… that’s how we SEE them. Now let’s look at the whole TRUTH; at least an alternative powerfully put forth by this documentary – “Samurai Headhunters.”

Noble swordsman? Ruthless head collector? The Samurai were both. The drama documentary charting the unknown, dark side of these ancient Japanese warriors by recreating the life of a young farmer forced into their army. Since their first appearance in the 8th century, Japan’s famous elite warriors are celebrated for their courage, formidable fighting techniques and above all, their code of honour. But do these Far Eastern knights really measure up to their heroic image? Now, for the first time, we reveal the unknown dark side of the Samurai – a fascinating tale of forbidden love, extreme cruelty, and treachery.
– Urban Canyons

WATCH: SAMURAI HEADHUNTERS (NETFLIX)

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PBS America Reveals The “Secrets Of Henry VIII’s Palace” (Documentary)

King Henry VIII’s Palace is wonderful. A piece of history, but the secrets and scandals are the part of a history less addressed. This “Secrets Of Henry VIII’s Palace” gets into that and then some.

The luxurious Hampton Court Palace sits on the banks of the river, just a short train ride from London. The large palace was home to Henry VIII’s court in the 16th century, and holds the many secrets and scandals of his reign.

The palace embodies Henry’s lavish and indulgent lifestyle, but also bears the mark of the royals who inhabited it after him; King William III and Queen Mary II demolished half of the palace in order to rebuild it into a Baroque castle intended to rival Versailles.

The resulting combination of styles makes Hampton Court one of the most unique palaces in the world. SECRETS OF HENRY VIII’s PALACE looks beneath the brick and stone to bring the many lives of Hampton Court to life.

– PBS America

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The Smithsonian Channel Opens Its “Mystery Files” On Italian Innovator And Icon Leonardo da Vinci (Trailer)

More often than not, when someone makes reference to someone being a “renaissance man” they are talking about (or giving a nod to) Leonardo da Vinci. That is, someone who is and/or does ‘everything’ and is ideal to have for most every occasion. The leader of the Italian Renaissance, Leonardo, painted iconic works like the “Mona Lisa” and “The Last Supper,” sketched designs for early versions of the bicycle, helicopter, and other flying machines… sculptor, architect, military engineer and more. And his work and reputation have survived throughout the centuries. Dude was all that. BUUUUT, there’s a documentary available from The Smithsonian Channel (and on Netflix) that sheds more light on the man that may well dim the lights on his myth and legend. Wow. File this under ‘keep it real.’

Click on the pic above or the link below to check out the trailer (and full documentary, if you desire) for “Mystery Files: Leonardo da Vinci.”

MYSTERY FILES: LEONARDO DA VINCI (SMITHSONIAN CHANNEL)

Why Do We Celebrate The 4th Of July?

Beyonce’s spirit traveled to 1776 to tell us to be independent?? Bwaaaaha! A’ight dude. But for real, watch above to learn some things about Independence Day and related factoids.

Before you head out to that BBQ, do you know why we even celebrate the Fourth of July? Watch as host MegScoop and guest host Rome Greene, Jr. from Dormtainment discuss facts you may or may not know about Independence Day.
– All Def Digital

Hahaa! And MegScoop said she likes ‘Napoleton’ ice cream. They stoopit! But watch above though, and learn.

@ojones1

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“Warrior Women” Who Made History (Docu-Series Trailer)

Hmm. Forgot how cute Lucy Lawless is in real life (that is, off the TV set). Here she is in a teaser clip for Acorn TV’s “Warrior Women” series, narrating the stories of the likes of Joan of Arc (featured above), Grace O’Malley, Boudica, Lozen and Mulan… Yeah, but this ain’t no Disney movie.

Brought to the screen by television’s most famous woman warrior, Lucy Lawless (Xena: Warrior Princess), this series brings to life history’s most charismatic women warriors. Shot on location in France, Ireland, Britain, China, and New Mexico, the stories are a heady mix of historical sleuthing and provocative reconstruction.
– Acorn TV

@ojones1

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Cracking “The Pyramid Code” Might Show That The Builders Of The Pyramids Had Technology Way Ahead Of… Our Time (Series Trailer)

Think we are more ‘advanced’ than those who came before us? Your first answer is, “Of course!” But are you really that sure? Advice: Don’t be so sure about how sure you are. More advice: Watch The Pyramid Code and see why should be a bit less sure about our timeline and modern technological superiority…

The Pyramid Code is a made-for-television documentary series of 5 episodes that explores the pyramid fields and ancient temples in Egypt, as well as ancient megalithic sites around the world, looking for clues to matriarchal consciousness, ancient knowledge, and sophisticated technology in a Golden Age.

Think for a second: Countless stones go into building a pyramid; each weighing, what, about a couple tons? You think a bunch of whip crackers, slaves and pullies got all that done back then? You sure?

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Learn About Humanity’s Journey Out Of Africa And Into The Wider World In The “Great Human Odyssey” (Trailer)

Humanity started in Africa. We’re on the same page with that, right. Science!

But let’s go deeper in depth with NOVA’s and PBS’ help. How did ancient humans make their ways to all corners of the Earth; not only surviving Africa but leaving it and coming to thrive as distant disparate populations in the various regions in which they finally settled? HUGE question. And there are more that will be addressed in the “Great Human Odyssey” documentary (available on PBS, and now on Netflix).

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