5/23/08

Children of the Grave: DVD Review

Children of the Grave: Review

by Rhetta A.

www.gather.com

Recently, Sci Fi aired a documentary by the Booth Brothers entitled Children of the Grave. It featured a number of people I respect in the paranormal community as hosts or commentators, such as Keith Age, Rosemary Ellen Guilley, and John Zaffis. I had seen the Booth Brothers' "Spooked!" about Waverly Sanitarium, and while I thought they did a good job, I was bothered by the fact that they came there to film a horror film and sometimes it was hard to tell the difference between re-enactment and actual events. Nevertheless, I was impressed by their historical documentation.

In "Children of the Grave," I feel that the brothers have done a much better job of distinguishing between real footage and re-enactment. Personally, I would prefer no re-enactment at all, but I realize that they have a product to sell, and Sci Fi likes dramatization. When I met Keith Age at Ghostock 6, I bought the DVD from him and the DVD does give you an opportunity in the "Extras" to take a closer look at some of the evidence, and it stands up to examination.

I really liked "Children of the Grave." From a paranormal standpoint, the places and stories were fascinating, and much of the evidence is intriguing.

However, for me, the most interesting part of this documentary has nothing to do with the paranormal aspects. I was fascinated by the history of the Orphan Trains and the fate of orphans in the late 19th and early 20th century, and the documentary does a wonderful job of presenting that.

I was vaguely aware of the Orphan Trains, and I have a personal connection to the orphanage experience of that time period because my grandmother was raised in a Masonic orphange in North Carolina from the age of 6 until she was 16, and I used to love to hear her tell me stories about it.

But as a result of watching Children of the Grave, I have embarked on a reading and research adventure about the Orphan Trains, and you can expect to see an article about them before too long.

I suppose if you are totally close-minded about the paranormal or you don't enjoy watching things pertaining to it, you might want to avoid this show or DVD. But if you're interested in history or the paranormal and you're a bit open-minded, I highly recommend it.

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