DVDs, Videos and Films
about the Polio Experience
From Judith M.
A Paralyzing Fear: The Story of a Nation's Triumph
over Disease and Fear
Narrated by Olympia Dukakis.
First appearing in the US in 1916, polio disabled tens of thousands of children every summer until it was eradicated by the Salk vaccine beginning in 1954. Baby boomers recall the terror of the polio epidemic and the thrill when the vaccine was discovered. Everyone remembers the fear of the long summers. People over 40 remember being told, "Don't go swimming! Don't go to the movies!" A Paralyzing Fear examines America's fear of the disease it could not contain and tells the story of America's transcendence from that fear.
DVD Bonus Features: Three MiniDocs on Epidemic Disease, History of Polio Timeline; photo gallery; biographies; trailers. 90 minutes plus bonus material, color. UPS 7-20229-91138-2, Catalog # FRF 911382D, SRP:$24.95. Can. $36.99. www.firstrunfeatures.com or toll-free 800-488-6652.
From Margaret B.
A Very Long Engagement
"Just wanted to mention, in case you are not aware of this film, A Very Long Engagement ... that the main character is a beautiful young woman who, as the story goes, had polio as a child. She is left with some mobility problems, but this is all worked into the film in a natural way. Her disability is not the main feature of the movie, but it is not ignored either.
"The film has subtitles, which some may not like. Is a French film. Also, although it is spectacularly filmed, it is also a very graphic film about war, so may not be for everyone. The plot is a melodrama, essentially about her missing fiance in World War I. Not the best movie in the world, but from a post-polio perspective, some may find the portrayal worth seeing." Search on the web with the title to find copies and information about this film.