DVD Picks: Museums

by Terri Robar, Learning & Research Services

The University of Miami hosted the inaugural Academic Art Museum and Library Summit in January, bringing together 14 pairs of library and museum directors from North American academic institutions to address opportunities for deep intra-institutional collaboration. The summit focused on the ways that new pedagogical models and technologies are transforming the work of the academy, and the potential for art museums and libraries to engage more fully with faculty, students, and each other.

In support of this historic moment, we offer the following DVDs from our collection. Some are movies that take place in museums but most are documentaries which give us a glimpse inside these marvelous repositories.

The following films are a part of Richter Library’s DVD collection. In addition to the thousands of DVDs spanning comedy, drama, sci-fi, horror, documentary, and other genres, UM Libraries also houses film-related materials such as screenplays, soundtracks, musical scores, and original book titles. Search the catalog to browse music and print resources related to these films.

A tour of the home built by James Deering, inspired by the Renaissance, Baroque, Rococo, and Neoclassical. Now a museum of European decorative arts, with famous gardens filled with fountains, grottos, and more.

Before this film no one else was ever permitted to film inside the Louvre. Set against the panoramic history of France, the priceless treasures and incomparable art are shared through the eyes of award-winning filmmaker Lucy Jarvis.

The plot: thieves planning a heist. The prize: the emerald-encrusted dagger of Sultan Mahmud I housed among the treasures of the Topkapi Palace museum in Istanbul.

Today’s Library of Congress is not only the repository of the nation’s life story, it’s arguably the “ultimate museum,” documenting civilizations from around the world. This program immerses viewers in history through a selection of cultural treasures archived among the library’s more than 130 million items, including Jefferson’s draft of the Declaration of Independence, the maps carried by Lewis and Clark, and the typewritten script of Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech.

Alfred Hitchcock’s first sound film. It’s the story of a grocer’s daughter, Alice White, who kills a man in self-defense and conceals the crime, only to find herself blackmailed by a low-life criminal. The drama comes to a head with a pursuit through the British Museum, including its round reading room and its echoing exhibition spaces, before a nail-biting ascent up onto the domed roof of the library, with the cornered blackmailer shown in silhouette against the sky.

In this screwball comedy, heiress Susan is determined to catch a stuffy zoologist and uses her pet leopard, Baby, to help get his attention. With his thick-lensed specs and lab coat, Huxley is a paragon of scholarly dedication, laboring to finish constructing a dinosaur skeleton for his museum before getting hitched to his starchy fiancée.

Museums in the movies aren’t just places for daring robberies or reanimated mummies. They’re also spaces for characters to show off their cultural credentials. Woody Allen’s black-and-white love letter to New York features scenes at the Guggenheim Museum, the American Museum of Natural History, and the Museum of Modern Art – essential stop-offs for any Big Apple intellectual.

Pierce Brosnan is the eponymous billionaire who, in one beat, bestows generous donations on New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art and, in another, is ingeniously pinching a priceless Monet from under the noses of the museum’s security. Crown’s sleek, impudent heist makes you want to throw it all in and become a burglar.

Rummaging through a trunk of old clothes in the Grandparent’s Attic display, children are not just trying on clothes; they’re trying on the business of being adults. Play is learning at the Boston Children’s Museum (founded 1913), which revolutionized the American museum experience half a century ago by getting objects out of cases and into children’s hands.

What do the superstars of modern art, such as Picasso, have in common with the Vincent Black Shadow motorcycle and an Apple iPod? All share the stage at New York’s Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). Here the two big questions are: What makes it modern AND what makes it art? MoMA’s scholars along with David Rockefeller prove that the modern art of any age is not the newest; it’s the next.

Every year, hundreds of thousands of people flock to the transboundary waters of Washington and British Columbia to engage in whale watching. This program features the Whale Museum in Friday Harbor, Wash. This organization promotes the stewardship of whales and the Salish Sea ecosystem through education and scientific research.

Located at the historic Saratoga Springs racetrack, the National Museum of Racing and Hall of Fame evokes the clang of the starting gate and the thunder of hooves through its renowned collection of equine art, trophies, silks, and thoroughbred memorabilia. This program is a first call to celebrate the sport of horse racing and the magnificent animals whose grace and beauty have become legendary.



Now on View at Weeks Music Library: Video Game Music

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Mario, from the Super Mario Bros. series

Over the last few decades, video games have blossomed from simple entertainment to a vibrant art form and one of the world’s fastest-growing industries. As appreciation for the medium has grown, the music of video games has become particularly celebrated. It is thus with great pride that Weeks Music Library has begun curating a collection of video game soundtracks and scores to promote and support the study of this music within the Frost School of Music and across the University of Miami. Our growing collection highlights the music of games released from the 1980s to today, and heavily features the work of American and Japanese composers. A selection of these materials is currently on display at Weeks Music Library. You can also browse our collection in the catalog.



Pop Culture Series: The Super Bowl

by Andrew Wodrich, Library Research Scholar

It was an exciting, confusing, and, unless you are the Carolina Panthers or Denver Broncos, probably disappointing season in the NFL. The Miami Dolphins saw their coach fired in week 5 after starting 1-3, while star players across the country, from Arian Foster to Tony Romo to Jamaal Charles, among many others, went down early in the season due to injuries. But even while the Dolphins and most NFL fans are ready to move on to next season, the final game of this season, the Super Bowl, will be hard to ignore.

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Football Referees at Orange Bowl, 1976. From the Michael L. Carlebach Photography Collection

As we approach the 50th anniversary of the Super Bowl, football and non-football fans alike will be tuning in from across the country to the game as well as pre-game specials. In fact, footage from the first Super Bowl game, something long thought lost, was recently found and aired by the organization as part of the lead-up to Super Bowl 50 (decidedly more impressive than Super Bowl L). The milestone reminds viewers of the Super Bowl’s cultural significance, not just as a championship of the season, but as a historical tradition.

In Miami, Super Bowl history also involves the history of one of its once most beloved landmarks, the Orange Bowl: the site of Super Bowls II (1968), III (1969), and V (1971). (Of course Super Bowl VII (1973) is of special significance here as well, as the year in which the Dolphins became the only team to go undefeated all the way–a record still held by the team.)

Now several years since the Orange Bowl was demolished and rebuilt as the Marlins Stadium, the stadium is well-remembered thanks not only to the Super Bowls it hosted early in the event’s history but also for the Miami Orange Bowl Festival, an annual event surrounding the bowl game. It was conceived in 1935 as a way to boost the economy of the region in the wake of the Depression and preceding land bust. The endeavor would have likely failed without the passion and dedication of one man, Earnie Seiler.

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University of Miami football inflatable helmet in Orange Bowl, 1992. From the Michael L. Carlebach Photography Collection.

Seiler’s vision and drive led to the development of the traditional New Year’s Day football game, the extravagant halftime shows, and the King Orange Jamboree Parade–likened in scale and spirit to today’s Super Bowl festivities. As the Orange Bowl Festival grew, it accomplished its goals of increasing tourism to Miami and general awareness of the city outside of South Florida. By its 40th anniversary, the Orange Bowl Festival was generating over $45 million in direct revenue for South Florida and attracting the attention of some 75 million television viewers across the country.

The festival, known today as the Capital One Orange Bowl Festival, remains a popular attraction for South Floridians and visitors to ring in the New Year, while the annual Orange Bowl football game, as part of the rotating College Football Playoff, generates over $200 million annually for South Florida.

Original records related to Orange Bowl history are housed at the University of Miami. Explore these and related materials at UM Libraries:

Football and Orange Bowl Related Resources

Books and Collections

How Postmodernism Explains Football and Football Explains Postmodernism : The Billy Clyde Conundrum

Is There Life After Football?: Surviving the NFL

How to Watch Football: Saving America’s Game From Itself

The Little Red Book of Football Wisdom

Pro football Championships Before the Super Bowl

The Super Bowl of Advertising: Are The Advertisers Still Winning the Game?

The Orange Bowl Story : Its Beginning

The Orange Bowl Cookbook

50th Annual Orange Bowl Festival

Fifty Years on the Fifty: The Orange Bowl Story

University of Miami Archives Orange Bowl Collection

Videos and Recordings

30 for 30. No. 7, The U

The Blind Side

Friday Night Lights. The Complete Series

The Dynamic Young Dolphins