Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Athena Educational Documentaries Cover Nazis, Alexander the Great and Besties Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellan

The Rise of the Nazi Party releasing June 17th
   Certainly a question haunts many people today, just how did Adolf Hitler and the Third Reich co-opt a nation to watch without comment as 6M Jews and others were murdered.  Hitler’s Final Solution had one and only one aim – to expunge Jews from Germany and its expanding stolen territories.  Athena’s comprehensive and exhaustive 500 minute documentary begins to answer that question in painstaking, authoritative detail, with interviews, archival footage, and new information.  It follows the beginnings of the anti-Semitic National Socialist in 1914 as Hitler, blinded and wounded and in a WW1 hospital bed, developing his scheme.   It ends detailing the ongoing search and capture of Nazi war criminals.  I

The documentary details of the state of Germany in its post WW1 humiliation and poverty as the people took to a new charismatic politician and paved the way for him to carry out his tyranny. The doc thoroughly examines the determining factors in Hitler’s success in a straightforward, clear way, without hysteria or exploitation. 

It is gripping and informative with a detailed, fleshed out timeline.  Within these 500 minutes the answer to the original question begins to reveal itself.  It has to do with lies, illusions, secrets and fear and of course, public apathy around the fate of the Jews.  It’s a riveting history that needs to be remembered.                        

The chapters are Nazism is Born, Becoming Respectable, Seizing Power, In Power, Preparing for War, Hitler’s Biggest Blunder, The Final Solution, Plots of Delusions, End Game and Aftermath. 

Theatreland in stores and online now

Just in time for X-Men Days of Future Past is the fascinating Theatreland. It follows Ian McKellan and Patrick Stewart – besties Magneto and Professor X – and the cast and crew behind-the-scenes at London’s Theatre Royal Haymarket where McKellan and Stewart are starring in Waiting for Godot

From the theatre’s father and daughter plumbing team, to an aspiring actress working as an usher and having to serve tea to Dame Maggie Smith, from co-stars Simon Callow and Ronald Pickup to the problems of fire and structural safety of the revered landmark theatre built in 1720. 

Beckett’s absurdist play brings the actors and the artistic directors’ special problems as it a difficult philosophical comedy that’s rarely staged and is about nothing and everything. 


Catch the actors as fans try to catch their eye and line up outside for autographs, the actors speaking with one another about mundane things like just how bad movie trailers are and apply their own makeup in the British theatre tradition.

Alexander’s Lost World - releasing June 17
Around 2,300 years ago, a European named Alexander ruled the East, including today’s Middle East and Central Asia.  He entered the Persian Empire in 334 B.C. and defeated them in war.  He discovered an extraordinary level of civilisation in his travels, particularly along the 1500 mile lone Oxus River. 

Photojournalist David Adams follows Alexander’s path through present day Greece, Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and other countries in a stunning 276 minute documentary.  Adams finds intriguing clues as to life in the era before Alexander although little remains to show the cultural heights to which the pre-Western civilization reached.  

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