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All Critics (30)
| Top Critics (14)
| Fresh (28)
| Rotten (2)
"Rosenwald" offers a compelling story of a man who obviously believed that giving is living.
The film is right in line with Kempner's other works...but as long as she keeps excavating these illuminating treasures of the Jewish-American past, that she's not doing anything radically new fades in importance.
Inspiring as the story of Julius Rosenwald is, there's little in the film that illuminates what kind of man this heroic philanthropist was.
Most viewers will likely have little-to-no familiarity with the events recounted in this documentary, and are guaranteed to leave the theater feeling enlightened and perhaps more than a touch gobsmacked.
Kempner has also interviewed people whose lives were shaped by Rosenwald's charity, and their cultural reminiscences give a strong feeling for what he was all about.
Documentary portrait of Julius Rosenwald, the Jewish-American head of Sears, Roebuck & Co., whose philanthropy gave a boost to African-American education and culture in the first half of the 20th century.
The story is inspiring, but the film is not cinematic.
The wonderful true story told in Rosenwald is a terrific history lesson, and an inspirational portrait of how one person can make a difference.
Despite its overlong running time and a tendency towards the dreaded "PBS Effect," this documentary... is dependably fascinating.
While sugared to a certain degree, the core of "Rosenwald" is pure, watching Kempner communicate the need for charity and the importance of support, celebrating a man who worked to better the world.
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