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Eyes on the Prize

James Bevel, a field worker for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, emphasizes a point during a mass meeting at a Negro church, July 17, 1965. From the moment of its debut, Eyes on the Prize has been recognized as a television landmark. Read excerpts from press reviews written when the series was first broadcast on PBS in 1987.

"The tale tells itself, mostly in superbly edited TV news footage and in sharp, apposite interviews with participants 20 and 30 years after the events... Eyes is required watching..."
New York
January 26, 1987

"...combing thousands of feet of news outtakes, the producers have found pictures, many never before broadcast, that tell a local story whose heroes are not charismatic leaders but ordinary citizens acting very deliberately."
Vanity Fair
January 1987

"Eyes on the Prize... is not only a splendid accounting of what happened during the most active years of the movement, but also of why it was so important..."
The Nation
January 31, 1987

"To watch Eyes on the Prize is to know more, while understanding how much more remains to be learned."
Christianity and Crisis
March 16, 1987

"Eyes on the Prize uses newsreel footage, interviews, and even TV outtakes to provide a balanced perspective on one of the great humanistic movements of contemporary America..."
The Christian Science Monitor
January 20, 1987

"...a vivid penetrating examination of the civil rights movement in this country... in a cool but compassionate way, this series chronicles how the civil rights movement grew in stature and purpose, a social cause not just for the dignity of one people but for the decency of all."
Hollywood Reporter
January 21, 1987

"Eyes on the Prize is that rarest of prized possessions: TV that blows you away. Eyes on the Prize -- the prize is freedom and justice for all -- should be required viewing... It's TV for posterity. Set the VCRs. Keep the tapes. Show it to your children, and your children's children."
The Miami Herald
January 20, 1987

"Stirring, informative, thoroughly researched... eloquently narrated... anyone who tunes in will be riveted."
The New York Daily News
January 22, 1987

"This is not just superb television; it is a journey into the soul of America."
The Chicago Sun-Times
January 29, 1987

"The series brings back all the mixed emotions of that time, the fear, the hope, the anger, the defiance, the courage, the strength, the sorrow, the pain... The series teaches about the power of courage, the strength of determination, and the way fear strips away the power and the dignity of those who fail to fight it. These are vital lessons..."
The Oakland Tribune
January 21, 1987

"...everything a TV documentary should be... balanced... powerful... I cannot remember learning more from any television program."
The Dallas Times Herald
January 24, 1987

"...an excellent piece of historical journalism... evenhanded... The series' true strength is in its sense of history... a history lesson well worth learning."
The Atlanta Constitution
January 21, 1987

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Eyes on the Prize Blackside American Experience