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1929: The Year Of The Crash

The History Channel November 2, 2009

Marking the 80th anniversary of the Wall Street Crash, this film looks back at the great financial disaster which shook the 20th century. Startlingly topical in view of the bleak banking crisis of today, the film traces the background and backlash of 1929 with astonishingly fresh and detailed archive footage.

The Wall Street Crash spread around the world like a malign infection. It humbled the rich and destroyed the savings of millions of ordinary people. It brought mass unemployment and near starvation to Europe and Asia, and slowed world trade for nearly a decade. The Crash also re-painted the political landscape, triggering the rise of ruthless dictators such as Hitler, Mussolini and Stalin.

1929: The Year of The Crash follows the wondrously decadent trail of the decade known as The Rolling Twenties the years in which Americans celebrated their post war status as world leaders in industry and modern invention, in which Jazz set the style for a worldwide generation and Hollywood movies featured glittering stars that bewitched a global audience.

Setting the scene for a nation's dizzying rise, the film then plunges into the depths of its terrible fall, exposing the poverty, dole queues and squalid soup kitchens which followed in the wake of the Wall Street Crash. Finally, it reveals how an unlikely hero, Franklin Roosevelt, rode to the rescue of his wounded country, bringing hope and optimism back into the hearts of his people.

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