I finished watching Show Me a Hero last night. It’s a 6-part mini-series from HBO. Each part/episode is about 60 minutes long. Show Me a Hero is based on a true story that took place in Yonkers, New York in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s. A lot characters were introduced in the first episode, so it was confusing at first. Other than that, the story was fairly easy to follow. Overall, I enjoyed the series. The story was interesting, the acting was good, and I loved the use of Bruce Springsteen music throughout the drama. Show Me a Hero is available now on Blu-ray, DVD, and digital HD. BTW, I received the DVD set for review on my blog.
The true story of a divided city
In the story, the city of Yonkers has been ordered by a federal court order to build 200 low-income housing units. The affluent and mostly white residents of Yonkers oppose the court order. They claim the new housing units will devalue their property when in reality they’re just racists and are afraid of desegregation. The Yonker residents are very vocal in their belief and placed heavy pressure on the local politicians to defy the court order. The politicians don’t want to build the new housing units either, but they are required to by law. In addition, the judge imposed a daily fine that will bankrupt the city in weeks. But many of the politicians still refuse to comply because they know they will get voted out of office if they do. As a result, the issue drags on for years, tears the city apart, and paralyzes the municipal government.
There was only one hero in the story
Most of the story centers around the politics involved in the low-income housing units. In the series we see the ugly side of politics and the back-stabbing of ambitious politicians. In my opinion, none of the politicians were very likable and none of them were heroes. However, some of the other characters in the story were likable. I would even go as far as to say one of the characters in the story was a hero. She actually started out protesting against the new housing units. But by the end of the story, she was an active advocate for the residents of the low-income housing units.
Show Me a Hero bonus feature
The DVD set includes a special feature called Making Show Me a Hero. The extra feature is an extended look at the series’ production, featuring behind-the-scenes footage and interviews with the creators, director, cast and real-life people involved in the making of the show as they discuss the bitter housing debate that deeply divided the city of Yonkers for decades.
Show Me a Hero cast
There were a lot of characters in the mini-series. Some of them include Oscar Isaac (Nick Wasicsko), Catherine Keener (Mary Dorman), Winona Ryder (Vinni Restiano), Carla Quevedo (Nay Noe), James Belushi (Angelo Martinelli), Peter Riegert (Oscar Newman), Natalie Paul (Doreen Henderson), Alfred Molina (Hank Spallone), Ilfenesh Hadera (Carmen Febles), LaTanya Richardson (Norma O’Neal), Josh Salatin (Michael Wasicsko), Bruce Altman (Buddy Dorman), Danny Mastrogiorgio (Peter Chema), and Michael Stahl-David (Jim Surdoval).
About Show Me a Hero
Emmy winner David Simon is famous for using his trained journalist’s eye to create compelling shows that shine a light on political corruption and the power of community (HBO series The Wire and Treme). His latest offering, the HBO miniseries Show Me a Hero, uses an all-star cast and an award-winning filmmaking team to explore the notions of home, race and community through the lives of elected officials, bureaucrats, activists and ordinary citizens in Yonkers, N.Y. The six-part series Show Me a Hero will be available now on Digital HD, Blu-ray and DVD. Directed by Academy Award winner Paul Haggis (Crash), David Simon partnered with longtime collaborator William F. Zorzi to adapt the mini-series from the critically-acclaimed nonfiction book of the same name by Lisa Belkin. The box sets include an extended making-of featurette and the Digital HD includes a recording of a Department of Housing and Urban Development panel featuring Simon. In an America generations removed from the greatest civil rights struggles of the 1960s, the young mayor of a mid-sized American city is faced with a federal court order that says he must build a small number of low-income housing units in the white neighborhoods of his town. His attempt to do so tears the city apart, paralyzes the municipal government and, ultimately, destroys the mayor and his political future.
More info: Show Me a Hero DVD Set