...engaging and discerning culture, as a way of life...

July 11, 2006

The Up Series: 42 Up - 6

This is the only episode in the series so far that has director commentary by Michael Apted. To listen to it makes the series make more sense in that Apted knows the limitations of what he is doing but cares enough about the people to show there real lives in order to see if he can't uncover something about the human condition. If nothing else this series shows the power, responsibility, insights, limits and failures of social research. Overall a pretty good series that can help start conversation about class, education, family, and character (To get overly philosophical, memory and video footage are the only evidence that these are the same people- very hard to predict what the story of their lives would be). But it does show the power of one's context and how that influences our decisions and shapes who we are and who we think we ought to be. In this episode the characters are starting to settle into life, its drama and tragedy, and trying to understand how to help their children live in the world (mostly premised in comparison to their own upbringing). This episode also shows the success of the characters, and their relative happiness and contentment in life. 49 Up was just released last year and is not yet available, so I'll have to delay it a bit (It is probably best to see this series over a longer period, it gets repetitive quickly).

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