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American Experience: Houdini

Overview

Harry Houdini was performing in a circus with his wife when he began dreaming about an even bigger career. This film recalls the highlights of his career, including his 1912 stunt that established him as the world's greatest escape artist. In that instance, Houdini had himself lowered into New York's East River in a crate that was wrapped in chains. In less than a minute, he escaped and came to the surface as both an admired and famous man. Archival footage and dramatic re-creations performed by professional ...
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Overview

Harry Houdini was performing in a circus with his wife when he began dreaming about an even bigger career. This film recalls the highlights of his career, including his 1912 stunt that established him as the world's greatest escape artist. In that instance, Houdini had himself lowered into New York's East River in a crate that was wrapped in chains. In less than a minute, he escaped and came to the surface as both an admired and famous man. Archival footage and dramatic re-creations performed by professional escape artist Bob Fellows allow viewers to revisit some of Houdini's major stunts. On-camera interviews with such people as illusionist David Copperfield, psychic claims investigator James Randi, and many others shed light on Houdini's performing techniques. Actor Mandy Patinkin narrates this probing looking into this performer's life.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/4/2011
  • UPC: 841887015134
  • Original Release: 1999
  • Source: Pbs (Direct)
  • Region Code: 1
  • Aspect Ratio: Pre-1954 Standard (1.33.1)
  • Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo
  • Language: English
  • Time: 60:00
  • Format: DVD
  • Sales rank: 41,930

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
David Copperfield Interviewee
E.L. Doctorow Interviewee
Al Hirschfeld Interviewee
Mandy Patinkin Voice Only
Technical Credits
Nancy Porter Director, Producer, Screenwriter
Boyd Estus Cinematographer
Claudio Ragazzi Score Composer
Peter Rhodes Editor
Mark Samels Executive Producer
Beth Tierney Producer
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- American Experience: Houdini
1. Becoming Harry Houdini [8:21]
2. The Escape Artist [10:06]
3. Involving the Public [8:54]
4. Harrowing Water Escapes [8:20]
5. The Final Stunt [7:04]
6. Exposing Spiritualists [7:43]
7. End Credits [1:17]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- American Experience: Houdini
   Play Film
   Scene Selection
   Setup
      Play With English Subtitles: On
      Play With English Subtitles: Off
   Pbs.org
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