Ken Burns - Rotten Tomatoes

Ken Burns

Lowest Rated:   78% Alone in the Dark (1982)
Birthday:  
Birthplace:   Not Available
After earning his BA at Hampshire College, Brooklyn-born Ken Burns pursued a career as a documentary filmmaker. At age 22, he formed Florentine Films in his home base of Walpole, New Hampshire. Dissatisfied with dry, scholarly historical documentaries, Burns wanted his films to "live," and to that end adopted the technique of cutting rapidly from one still picture to another in a fluid, linear fashion. He then pepped up the visuals with "first hand" narration gleaned from contemporary writings and recited by top stage and screen actors. Burns' first successful venture was the award-winning documentary The Brooklyn Bridge, which ran on public television in 1981. While he was Oscar-nominated for his 1985 theatrical release The Statue of Liberty, Burns' work has enjoyed its widest exposure on television: such films as Huey Long (1985), Thomas Hart Benton (1986) and Empire of the Air (1991) (a bouquet to the pioneers of commercial radio) have become staples of local PBS stations' seasonal fund drives. In 1990, Burns completed what many consider his "chef d'oeuvre": the eleven-hour The Civil War, which earned an Emmy (among several other honors) and became the highest-rated miniseries in the history of public television. Civil War was the apotheosis of Burns' master mixture of still photos, freshly shot film footage, period music, evocative "celebrity" narration and authentic sound effects. In 1994, Ken Burns released his long-awaited Baseball, an 18-hour saga which, like The Civil War, was telecast at the same time as the publication of a companion coffee-table book. Over the coming decades, Burns would continue to ingrain his reputation as the biggest name in long-form documentary film making, creating multi-part histories of Jazz, WWII, Baseball, and Prohibition.

Highest Rated Movies

Filmography

MOVIES

RATING TITLE CREDIT YEAR
100% Defying the Nazis: The Sharps' War
  • Director
2016
No Score Yet The Address
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
  • Producer
2014
96% Plimpton! Starring George Plimpton As Himself
  • Actor
2013
No Score Yet This Is America
  • Director
2013
93% The Central Park Five
  • Director
  • Screenwriter
  • Producer
2012
No Score Yet Mark Twain
  • Director
2012
No Score Yet The Tenth Inning
  • Director
2010
No Score Yet The Medal of Honor
  • Executive Producer
2008
No Score Yet War Bundle 2
  • Director
2007
95% Wordplay
  • Actor
2006
No Score Yet Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson
  • Director
  • Executive Producer
  • Producer
2005
100% Unforgivable Blackness: The Rise and Fall of Jack Johnson
  • Director
2004
No Score Yet Horatio's Drive: America's First Road Trip
  • Producer
  • Director
2003
No Score Yet Seeing. Searching. Being. - 3 films on William Segal
  • Director
2002
No Score Yet The 50 Years War: Israel and the Arabs
  • Director
2000
No Score Yet Not For Ourselves Alone
  • Director
  • Producer
1999
No Score Yet Frank Lloyd Wright
  • Producer
  • Director
1998
No Score Yet Lewis & Clark: The Journey of the Corps of Discovery
  • Executive Producer
  • Producer
1997
No Score Yet Vezelay
  • Director
1997
No Score Yet Thomas Jefferson
  • Director
1996
80% Gettysburg
  • Hancock's Aide
1993
No Score Yet Empire of the Air: The Men Who Made Radio
  • Director
1992
No Score Yet The Congress
  • Producer
  • Director
1989
No Score Yet Ken Burns American Stories
  • Actor
  • Producer
  • Director
1989
No Score Yet Statue of Liberty
  • Director
1986
No Score Yet Huey Long
  • Actor
  • Director
1985
78% Alone in the Dark
  • Cop at House
1982
No Score Yet Brooklyn Bridge
  • Director
1981
No Score Yet Making of Baseball
  • Actor

TV

RATING TITLE CREDIT
No Score Yet Late Show With David Letterman
1993-2015
  • Guest
No Score Yet Real Time With Bill Maher
2003
  • Guest
No Score Yet CBS This Morning
2012
  • Guest
No Score Yet Independent Lens
1999
  • Appearing
No Score Yet Colbert Report
2005-2014
  • Guest
92% Difficult People
2015
  • Actor
No Score Yet The Dust Bowl
2012
  • Director
  • Producer
No Score Yet Finding Your Roots With Henry Louis Gates Jr.
2012
  • Appearing
100% The Roosevelts: An Intimate History
2014
  • Executive Producer
  • Director
  • Producer
No Score Yet Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies
2015
  • Executive Producer
  • Producer
  • Screenwriter
No Score Yet The View
1997
  • Guest
No Score Yet Meet the Press
1947
  • Panelist
  • Guest
No Score Yet The War
2007
  • Executive Producer
  • Director
  • Producer
100% Jackie Robinson
2016
  • Director
No Score Yet Live From Lincoln Center
2000
  • Appearing
No Score Yet The Daily Show With Jon Stewart
1999-2015
  • Guest
No Score Yet Prohibition
2011
  • Director
  • Producer
91% The Late Show With Stephen Colbert
2015
  • Guest
100% The Nightly Show With Larry Wilmore
2015-2016
  • Panelist

Quotes from Ken Burns' Characters

No quotes approved yet.