Video Reviews | December 1, 2012

Library Journal Reviews starred review Shadow of Afghanistan, 1959–2012. color. 90+ min. In English & Arabic w/English subtitles. Jim Burroughs & Suzanne Bauman, Rains & Rivers Prod., dist. by Cinema Libre Studio, 2012. DVD UPC 881394115026. $19.95. INT AFFAIRS

Originally initiated in the late 1980s by filmmaker Lee Shapiro, this documentary was completed by Burroughs and Bauman after the tragic deaths of Shapiro and a colleague during the Soviet war in Afghanistan. Culled from many hours of footage shot over 20 years, Shadow of Afghanistan reveals events largely unreported in our mainstream media. In addition to the footage shot by the filmmakers (Cuban OdysseyLa Belle Epoque), this documentary also incorporates archival footage from the 1950s and 1960s. Told largely through the eyes of a commander with the National Islamic Front and the head of the Afghan Red Crescent, the film graphically depicts how badly Afghanistan has been decimated by years of conflict, from proxy wars by Cold War superpowers to the more recent hostilities with the Taliban and al-Qaeda. First released in 2006, this documentary has been updated and includes a number of bonus features. VERDICT This film should be required viewing for anyone who wants to understand the origins of the current Afghan conflict. Recommended for public and academic libraries.—Rod Bustos, Augusta State Univ. Lib., GA

65_RedRoses. color. 95+ min. Nimisha Mukerji, OWN Documentary, dist. by Virgil Films, 2012. DVD UPC 829567084724. $19.99. HEALTH

“65 roses” is the only way Eva Markvoort could pronounce cystic fibrosis, a chronic fatal disease she suffered from birth. As she got older, she discovered an online community of other young women with CF and adopted 65_RedRoses as her online name. This documentary is about British Columbian Markvoort’s life as she waits for a double lung transplant—her only hope for survival as, by age 23, her lungs have virtually stopped functioning and her life expectancy is less than two years. The film is an emotional roller-coaster ride, with footage of and interviews with Markvoort, her family, and her online friends. Their stories are shared as well, but the focus is on Markvoort, who after nine months of waiting finally gets her transplant and begins living a life where drawing a breath is natural, not painful. VERDICT This is an intense, up-close look at a debilitating disease; the scenes of the operation are graphic. Yet Markvoort’s story is one of courage and a will to live, however many days she had left. (Markvoort died in 2010, just prior to her 26th birthday.)—Catherine Gilmore, MLS, Portland, OR

[antoine]. color. 52 min. tchr’s. guide available. In French w/English subtitles. Lauri Bari, Natl. Film Bd. of Canada, 800-542-2164; 2012. DVD UPC 698193247373. $225. Public performance. SOC SCI

This award-winning documentary examines the world of five-year-old Antoine, a student in a Montreal elementary school who has been blind since birth. He and his friends engage in school projects, games, and the search for an imagined adult friend, Madame Rouski, who has turned into a drop of water. Antoine is also interested in radio broadcasting, cars, and being a detective. Using a microphone, Antoine records and comments on the sounds he hears. This is an amusing glimpse into a child’s world, where reality and imagination blend almost seamlessly. The film is produced in French, with English subtitles available, but the white titles occasionally get lost on a background of snow or paper. ­VERDICT This program will be of interest to those involved with early childhood education, particularly of the blind.—Susan B. Hagloch, formerly with Tuscarawas Cty. P.L., New Philadelphia, OH

The following titles are reviewed in the December 1 print issue. Visit Book Verdict for the full reviews.


Jodi Picoult Collection: Salem Falls; Plain Truth; The Pact. 2 discs. color. 4+ hrs. Bradley Walsh & others, A&E Television Networks, Lifetime, dist. by New Video, 800-314-8822; 2012. DVD ISBN 9781422921555. $19.95. F/TV

Johnny Guitar. color. 110+ min. Nicholas Ray. DVD UPC 887090044707; Blu-ray UPC 887090044806.

Pursued. b/w. 101+ min. Raoul Walsh. DVD UPC 887090042307; Blu-ray UPC 887090042406.

Rio Grande. b/w. 105+ min. John Ford. DVD UPC 887090044905; Blu-ray UPC 887090045001.
ea. vol: Olive Films, 2012. DVD $19.95; Blu-ray $29.95. WESTERN


The Art of Spiegelman: From Raw to Maus, and Beyond. color & b/w. 44 min. Wichita Films, dist. by Films Media Group, 800-322-8755; 2012. DVD ISBN 9781617339424. $169.95. Public performance; closed-captioned. ART-GENERAL

Holy Rollers: The True Story of Card Counting Christians. color. 91 min. Storkel, Connell Creations & BCC!,dist. by Passion River, 732-321-0711; 2012. DVD 091037155375. $24.95. GAMES/REL

Bluegrass Roots. 60 min. DVD UPC 760137531890.

The Complete Bascom Lamar Lunsford Story. 52 min. DVD UPC 760137531999.
ea. vol: b/w. David Hoffman. (Hoffman Collection). dist. by MVDVisual, 800-888-0486; 2012. $99.95. Public performance. MUSIC

Christine Schäfer: My Art of Singing. color. 52 min. Dieter Schneider & Felix Schmidt, FTS Media, dist. by Kultur, 2012. DVD ISBN 9780769790879. $19.99. MUSIC

Michael Tilson Thomas: The Thomashefskys; Music and Memories of a Life in the Yiddish Theater. color & b/w. 135+ min. Patricia Birch & Gary Halvorson, dist. by Docurama c/o New Video, 800-314-8822; 2012. DVD ISBN 9781422918531. $29.95. THEATER


Treasure Houses of Britain. 2 vols.color. 231+ min. Alastair Layzell, History Channel & WNET, dist. by Athena Learning, 888-870-8047; 2012. DVD ISBN 9781598287493. $49.99. SDH subtitles. HIST/ARCHITECTURE

Patriocracy. color. 86+ min. Brian Malone, Fast Forward Films, dist. by Cinema Libre Studio, 2012. DVD UPC 881394115620. $19.95. POLITICS


Tar Creek. color. 54 min. Matt Myers, Jump the Fence Prod., dist. by Bullfrog Films, 800-543-3764; www.bullfrogfilms. com. 2012. DVD ISBN 9781937772024. $250 (Rental: $85). Public performance; SDH subtitles. ENVIRONMENT

Wiebo’s War. color. 52 min. David York, 52 Media, Inc. & Natl. Film Bd. of Canada, 800-542-2164; 2012. DVD UPC 6981932Library Journal Reviews starred review155. $225. Public performance. ENVIRONMENT

Bette-Lee Fox About Bette-Lee Fox

Bette-Lee Fox ( is Managing Editor, Library Journal.

Now in her 46th year with Library Journal, Bette-Lee also edits LJ's Video Reviews column, six times a year Romance column, and e-original Romance reviews, which post weekly as LJ Xpress Reviews. She received the Romance Writers of America (RWA) Vivian Stephens Industry Award in 2013 for having "contributed to the genre or to RWA in a significant and/or continuing manner"