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51 Birch Street


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Block's hypnotic documentary, among the finest of the year, is a resounding success because it touches on things every child has wondered about on the road to adulthood. What really went on in your parents' bedroom? Did Mom or Dad ever mess around?"


Susan O (age 49)

I just waatched 51 Birch St for the second time and loved it even more.  I was struck by how much this reminded me of my grandparents life together.  Although I never spoke to either of them about it, actions always speak louder than words.  My grandparents married in the early 50’s, he for the first time, she for the second. They met at a dance, my grandmother was divorced with two children and, I’m sure, looking for a husband.  I don’t think my Grandfather was looking for a wife, but pregnancy can change that.  Rumor has it, she told him she could not have any more children.  The first seed of resentment.  Two children came along.  By this time, my parents were married and having kids so we all grew up together more as cousins and spent alot of time at the Grandparents house.  It was clear early on that it was not a happy place but everyone put on a happy face.  Grandma was stuck with life by virtue of being a woman and there were few choices.  Grandpa was stuck by a wife and children to support.  Lots of drinking ensued.  They stuck it out for close to fifty years, Grandma died in 2000.  The last few years of her life were spent in and Alzheimers fog and she was nicer to Grandpa than she had ever been because she didn’t remember who he was.  He came and visited her every day with her dog and it was the happiest they had ever been.  Lo and behold, when Grandma passed away, Grandpa got remarried almost right away.  A woman who had lived around the corner from them for over forty years.  Had something been going on?  One can only speculate.  Grandpa is very happy now and we are all very happy for him.  If you can find some happiness in life, go for it!  I am goiing to purchase a copy of this DVD, I find something new in it everytime I watch it.  It speaks volumes about how we conduct ourselves as human beings.

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