Compilation of clips from The 90's People segments.
0:44 The 90’s intro.
1:20 Robert Demella, New York taxi driver, talks about tricks of the trade. “Once they find out I’m a native New Yorker, seven years of psychiatric bills come pouring right out.” He then rants about television. “[The TV set] has lobotomized you…Do you realize our generation that grew up on TV is probably the STUPIDEST generation to come down the pike?…If it’s not quick, if it’s not easy, if it’s not fast food junk for the mind, you don’t want to hear about it!”
5:37 Ruth Handler, Los Angeles, CA, co-founder of Barbie dolls. She now produces prosthetic breasts for cancer patients, with a company called “Nearly Me.” She explains her history of how difficult it was for her after she lost her breasts. We tour the factory. Handler shows us her prosthetic breasts, literally unbuttoning her dress, showing us her bra, and taking out her prosthetic breasts.
11:45 “Our Own Land”, Kentucky. We see land being blown up, presumably for mining. We hear old-style Appalachian singing. “Goodbye my sweet home, you soon will be gone.” The song is about her parents being swindled out of their land by the mining companies. Pan the mountains, seeing beautiful trees and suddenly nothing where the mountains have been burned and blown out. A family talks about a company trying to force them out of their land, along with their ancestors’ graves. Another man yells about how he tried to save his land, but he couldn’t. A man from the mining company attacks the video crew. Former state representative Everett Akers passionately tells his story: “They have taken our rights! They have taken our freedom! When you own and control land you are a free man! When you own land and can’t control it, you’re a slave!…Who gave you permission to steal our land, to kill our land? We can’t produce, we can’t make a living off of our land!…Shame on you! Shame on the courts of Kentucky!”
20:30 Erika Becker talks to her father about her “Several Policy” [Cerebral Palsy]. She explains what the disease does and how it made her feel. “What’s the worst part of having a handicap?” “I think being made fun of. That really hurts.” “Inside, even grownups treat me differently…but that’s because I’m different.” By Eddie Becker.
27:08 In New Haven, Connecticut, ex-addict John Parker illegally distributes clean needles to intravenous drug users to prevent the spread of AIDS. Parker is in thousands of dollars of debt, paying for the program entirely himself. He claims that his program empowers people to feel like they can make a difference in their own lives, which is the first step towards treatment. On the day when Blumberg is shooting, Parker is also being interviewed by an ABC news crew. Blumberg’s shooting style contrasts greatly with that of the ABC crew, who prefer to set up artificial situations rather than shoot events as they unfold. By Skip Blumberg.
39:35 Andrew Jones, AR, ar, Iraq. He was doing a story about teenage reggae stars. He tells us on camera about reading in the newspaper about people going to Iraq and forming a human shield to try to prevent violence. He goes over there to be with them. He talks about his anger that George Bush declared peace in Iraq for Martin Luther King’s birthday. He talks about how the people at the camp do not have gas masks, because most of the chemicals go through the skin anyways. It’s a very personal and unusual piece. The editing is highly unconventional, and the piece is very engaging.
46:45 End of tape.