The Titans That Built America on DVD

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The Titans That Built America

For as much as The History Channel gives us shows about aliens, conspiracy theories, and cryptids, when it does decide to do some actual history, it excels -- particularly when it makes the information digestible in these dramatized reenactments.

The latest of these to cross my desk is The Titans That Built America, a retrospective of the early twentieth century that covers the era from post-World War I through the end of World War II. It's focus is on the automotive industry, largely, telling the stories of Henry and Edsel Ford (Grant Masters and David Crowley), Walter Chrysler (Cillian O'Gairbhi), and Pierre Du Pont (Gerald Kyd). But more than just telling their individual stories, it includes how their lives intersected, and how what began as one modern wonder -- the mass-produced automobile industry -- grew into the production of airplanes (for the postal service) and, ultimately, a military industrial complex. 

The three-part series does more than just give the history of events, it humanizes these characters, showing how they rose to power, who was there to aid them, like J.P. Morgan (Peter O'Meara), and who was waiting in the wings (so to speak) to toppe them, like William Boeing (Ian Toner). Along the way we will also meet the likes of Charles Lindbergh (Charlie Maher) who made the world feel safe about air travel, and Rose Will Monroe (Natalie Britton), a factory worker during World War II who became the face of a cause: Rosie the Riveter.

This is a wholly compelling and engrossing chapter of American history, presented in a fashion that makes it an addicting watch. The scenes are  interspliced with commentary from some of the titans of today, like Mark Cuban, offering their take on the scenes that had just happened. We gladly recommend this one to history lovers.