Stephen Fry In America (Blu-Ray)

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Travel Documentary hosted by Stephen Fry, published by BBC in 2008 - English narration

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Image: In-America-Blu-Ray-Cover.jpg

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Stephen Fry In America (Blu-Ray) Stephen Fry was very nearly an American. Just before Stephen was born, his father was offered a job at Princeton University but turned it down. As a result, Stephen was born in NW3 rather than in NJ, New Jersey. In this six-part series he travels, mostly in a London cab, through all 50 states of the country that he could have nearly called home and which has always fascinated him.

[edit] New World

In this first episode, he explores the states that make up New England, before heading south to the nation's capital and ending up at the civil war battlefield of Gettysburg in Pennsylvania. Presidential hopefuls in New Hampshire, witches in Salem, nuclear submariners in Connecticut, deer hunters, small time mobsters in NYC, socialites in Rhode Island, lobster fishermen in Maine, ice cream blenders in Vermont and card washers in New Jersey - Stephen meets them all as he takes the road through the autumn colours to uncover what really makes America tick.

[edit] Deep South

Here, Stephen Fry explores what it is that makes the south so distinctive. He joins coal miners deep underground in West Virginia, meets a young man with the state of Kentucky tattooed on his butt, enjoys a delirious session of bluegrass music-making in Tennessee, has an encounter with a bear in the Smokey Mountains, ascends in a balloon above North Carolina, learns the language of slaves in South Carolina, is invited into a Georgian family's Old Plantation house to join their Thanksgiving celebrations (and has an unfortunate encounter with a horse), fails as a dancing escort in Florida and is moved by two very different events in Alabama: a parole board's deliberations and the extraordinary hoopla of a college ball game, complete with air-force jets.

[edit] Mississippi

Stephen begins his epic 2000-mile journey up the Mississippi in the sultry, voodoo soaked streets of New Orleans during its busiest day of the year - Mardi Gras. He meets a Jewish Voodoo priestess, an Iraqi war veteran experiencing flashbacks in the abandoned neighbourhoods destroyed by Hurricane Katrina, down-and-outs not living the American Dream, and takes a tour through Angola, one of America's most notorious prisons. In the Delta he gets the Blues with actor Morgan Freeman at his club in Clarksdale and in Chicago drives guitar legend Buddy Guy round his old stomping grounds on the South Side. Forsaking calmness at the Transcendental Meditation HQ in Iowa he travels to Motown, Detroit, where he gets to drive in a Model T and the latest Cadillac with its designer before enjoying the rustic beauty of an Amish farm and learning how to milk a sheep in Wisconsin. At the river's source in Minnesota he learns how the Hmong refugees, so far from their opium growing villages in Laos, are adapting to the snowy wastes before catching his first fish in forty years on the frozen Lake Minnetonka.

[edit] Mountains and Plains

Starting with the airborne border patrol agents at the Canadian border in the stunning mountains of Montana, and ending at the very different border with Mexico in Texas, Stephen explores the natural beauty of the Rocky Mountains, and America's breadbasket beside them. He meets Ted Turner and some of his 50,000 bison, encounters Wyoming ranchers who have particularly close encounters with wolves and bears, rides through the snow on a dogsled, overdoses on carbohydrates at a German diner in Bismarck, N Dakota, and experiences the Badlands of South Dakota. A ride with a trucker in Nebraska takes him into the bizarre home of some Kansans in an underground missile base. Posh Aspen in Colorado is in contrast with a Salvation Army belly dancer in Oklahoma, while a gala dinner in Houston is a far cry from a band of Texmex musicians at the border in El Paso.

[edit] True West

The high mesas of New Mexico are the starting point for Stephen's journey through the dramatic landscapes and peoples of the South West. The physicists at the Los Alamos Lab, who are unravelling the mysteries of dark matter, contrast starkly to the ecohouse dwellers living off the grid near Sante Fe. Staying with the Navajo Indians in Monument Valley in Arizona, Stephen learns to weave a basket, before heading to the sublime beauty of Lake Powell, and life aboard a luxurious houseboat. He takes a World War II Flying Fortress bomber to the "Boneyard" in Tucson, where 3000 military planes are eerily mothballed, before living out a fantasy by becoming a cowboy at the Old Tucson Studios. In Nevada he meets semi-naked Mormon missionaries during their calendar shoot, and is initiated into the intricacies of brothel life by madame extraordinaire Susan Austin before heading over the Sierra Nevada mountains to the Pacific Ocean.

[edit] Pacific

Starting in San Francisco where he meets up with Apple's design guru, Jony Ive, Stephen explores the Pacific Northwest. He travels up the coast to Mendocino to take part in a drug bust, before joining tree-sitters and Big Foot believers in the Oregon giant redwood forests. Dope smoking students and edgy cabaret in Seattle give way to the stark wilderness of Alaska and an unsuccessful whale hunt with Eskimos in Barrow, the northernmost city of the USA. On the islands of Hawaii, he meets a real life Magnum PI , goes swimming with sharks and paddles with surfers. He then sees the death of stars with astrophysicist Alex Filippenko, and the birth of new land as lava flows into the sea, creating yet more America.

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[edit] Technical Specs

  • Video Codec: x264 CABAC High@L4.1
  • Video Bitrate: 3994 Kbps
  • Video Aspect Ratio: 1.778 (16:9)
  • Video Resolution: 1280 x 720
  • Audio Codec: AAC LC
  • Audio English
  • Audio Bitrate: 160 Kbps VBR 48KHz
  • Audio Channels: Stereo 2
  • Run-Time: 59mins
  • Framerate: 25 FPS
  • Number of Parts: 6
  • Container Mp4
  • Part Size: 1.71 GB
  • Source: Blu-Ray DVD
  • Encoded by: Harry65

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