DVD review: Who Do You Think You Are? Season One

Rated: NR (Not Rated)
Studio: Acorn Media
DVD Release Date: March 15, 2011
Run Time: 293 minutes

Lisa Kudrow and writer/director Don Roos co-produced this intriguing series that follows celebrities as they work with genealogists, historians and researchers to investigate their family histories. It’s heartfelt and uplifting. Sarah Jessica Parker [Sex and the City], Matthew Broderick [Wonderful World, Addicted to Love], Lisa Kudrow [The Opposite of Sex, Friends], director Spike Lee [Malcolm X, 25th Hour] , Susan Sarandon [Dead Man Walking, Thelma & Louise], Brooke Shields [The Blue Lagoon, Suddenly Susan] and former Dallas Cowboys player Emmitt Smith take unforgettable, fascinating journeys to trace their roots.

Sarah Jessica Parker travels to California to find out information about a relative who may have been in the Gold Rush. Interesting Gold Rush fact: 10 people died for every mile traveled. Then she finds herself in New England and Salem, Mass. where a relative has some connection with the Salem witch trials. Is her relative an accuser or an accused? I won’t reveal it. Sarah’s husband Matthew Broderick has two relatives who fought in major wars. His great-grandfather served as part of the Connecticut regiment and fought at Gettysburg. Remember that Matthew played a Civil War hero in the film Glory? Lisa Kudrow’s research takes her to Minsk, Belarus. Her great-grandmother was killed in the Holocaust. She was “killed and burned.” Kudrow states: “You make people afraid enough of something completely manufactured and you can drive them to be cold-blooded murderers.” Emmitt Smith and Spike Lee both find slave-owner ancestors. Lee reunites with a relative he didn’t know he even had. Brooke Shields discovers her royal connections [she’s related to Henry IV 25 times removed]. Finally Susan Sarandon traces her artistic ancestors to Tuscany. Fun fact: 50, 000 Italians immigrated to America in 1888.

In finding out about their familial background, the stars inevitably uncover aspects about themselves in the process. Who Do You Think You Are? is riveting and intriguing.

Purchase at Amazon: Who Do You Think You Are?: Season One

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