Tuesday, November 30, 2010

"Building Alaska" movie review

Part of the fun of homeschooling means we can set the schedule as we want, so watching a history movie after dinner as a family works!
Building Alaska
Tonight's offering was "Building Alaska."  It was so interesting! --So not just for kids or those who homeschool. The projects and the individual characters who shaped the state all along its history were impressive.  
The movie began with the Klondike Gold Rush, and the building of the different railroads, including the one started in 1898.  The paths they forged and the bridges they designed and constructed were impressive feats of engineering, built under such difficult weather conditions and through such treacherous terrain.  Future railroads and highways never got easier, and infrastructure is still a challenge and need today.  
I didn't know that 2 Alaskan islands were bombed and temporarily occupied by Japan in World War II.
The drive for statehood must have been amazing to experience from within.  It seemed that every Alaskan took it personally and had a stake in it.
The photos of damage (buildings, roads, railroads, bridges) and topographical changes from the1964 earthquake and resulting tsunamis were beyond comprehension and description.  The rebuilding process had to be quite an undertaking, as it seemed like every bit of every town and transportation system was destroyed.
The movie ended with a discussion of the future.  The infrastructure needs and the use of Alaskan resources to support the US and business there;  how long those things might last, and what Alaska will have to offer far into the future.  

Worth the 90 minutes to watch...They went quickly!
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