Got a lot of blackberries? Then check out this recipe for Blackberry Mojito Fruit Leather.

I'm not a huge fan of fruit leathers, but this turned out super good! And, really, you can't go wrong with blackberries, mint and rum.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Frontier House - movie screening and discussion

La Casa FronteraSince we are doing a book club online, why not do a movie screening and discussion online while we are at it?

Someone recently left a comment about the PBS series, Frontier House, which I saw part of when it was on TV a few years back. The series takes three families and exposes them to what it was like to live on a homestead in 1883 Montana. They spare no one from the vagaries of 19th century living for six months.

For those of you fantasizing about life on a homestead this will give you a glimpse of what it really takes to survive on your own. Of course, this is a reality show, albeit for PBS, but it's still edited for entertainment in addition to the educational element. In other words, take it with a grain of salt.

You can get the two disc series from Netflix, Blockbuster or you may try your public library (I know mine carries it).

Anyone interested in doing a group movie screening - it's filmed in three parts so there would be three discussion posts.

31 comments:

Cheryl said...

Have you seen "Pioneer Quest: A Year in the Real West"? It's a Canadian production similar to Frontier House, but I think it has aired on PBS stations in the US as well. The people who volunteered stuck it out for a whole year and took it a lot more seriously than some of the Frontier House people did, so you get to see a lot more of the trials and tribulations of pioneer life. The couples were a lot of fun to watch, too.
Anyway, I guess my point is that this sounds like a fun discussion!

camp mom said...

Sounds like this may be a great discussion....quite a bit like how I live w/my family!

Anonymous said...

I watched this series when it first aired - as well as the one that was done in England (setting was WWII london) Both were really interesting. If my library has the dvds or can get them ILL - Count me in for the discussion.

One note about it - I wish there was less footage of the modern day people griping so I could have my 8yr old son - who is reading little house on the praire books with me- watch it.....

wasteweardaily said...

I love the idea. When the series was brought up, I got out my tape of it and watched it again. It is a good show except for all the drama. I also saw Pioneer Quest and found that one more educational. I would like to watch that one again. I'm up discussion. Great idea.
Cindy in FL

Jacran Cottage said...

I'd be interested in the discussion on Frontier House. I won't be watching it again but I did see it quite sometime ago. Pioneer Quest was, in my opinion, far better. The two couples in that one really believed in what they were doing, and stuck it out much longer and in very difficult situations. As someone already mentioned there was much too much complaining and trying to get around the rules with Frontier House which took away a lot from the show.

The British reality show set in WWII that someone mentioned was the 1940s House. That one was great as well. That same UK station also did one called 1900 House, set in Victorian times.

just ducky said...

I have been reading some of the Little House on the Prairie books lately, so this ties right in!

perilousknits said...

I think Pioneer House would have been a much better show if certain participants had read Little House on the Prairie before filming.

I'll definitely look up Pioneer Quest, it sounds great! Another great show is "Tales from the Green Valley." It's an earlier time period (1600's), but the participants were people like archaeologists and anthropologists, so there was NO whining or complaining.

I love shows with experimental archaeology, but I can pass on the spoiled, obnoxious, couch potatoes screaming foul because they are being forced to use an outhouse.

Crunchy Chicken said...

Well, I'm certainly up for another vote on picking which of the Pioneer / Frontier / House shows we want to watch.

For today's poll I'll just try to get the number of people interested in doing the movie thing and of the genre.

I'll follow up with a poll on whether people prefer Frontier House vs. Pioneer Quest versus others that get mentioned...

Jo said...

I've already seen Frontier House so voted that I'd participate in the discussion but not watch it again, but would be interested in seeing Pioneer Quest too.

Anonymous said...

if I knew I could rent pioneer quest where I live I would but they don't have it at the library here...did a check thru on internet....I think Frontier house would be a pretty safe bet. Granted alot of the griping from what I remembered-but I think alot of it was they weren't really prepared to go out there. It would be interesting to see what happened to the folks 7 yrs. (?) later-how their liveshave changed.

Phelan said...

I am so in, on either one of the shows mentioned. I have seen Frontier house before and I did a lot of gripping of my own "suck it up people!"

Tara said...

I've seen both this (twice!) and Pioneer Quest. They are really great series and offer a lot of material for thought and discussion.

perilousknits said...

Well, It seems that Pioneer Quest is not on DVD yet, so that would make it difficult for us to all watch it.

I would love it if PBS or the BBC did a "Great Depression/1930s House". I think that would be very informative. If we are to compare our potential post-peak-oil futures to any time period of the past, the Great Depression seems like a good fit.

Earlier when I wrote, "I think Pioneer House would have been a much better show if certain participants had read Little House on the Prairie before filming." I meant to say "Frontier House." Ya'll knew what I meant, right?

Hey, maybe that could be our next book club! Little House books! Then we could do a challenge where we eat nothing but potatoes for a month, ala The Long Winter! (I'm kidding, I'm kidding . . . )

Theresa said...

Pioneer Quest was great! I really enjoyed that series. Two couples building and growing everything from scratch, coping with floods and Manitoba-sized mosquitoes in the Spring/Summer and a Canadian prairie winter too - it was amazing! One of the few programs worth watching on TV, definitely.

Grant said...

I've watched Frontier House twice, most recently with my parents who also really enjoyed it. Thanks to the recommendations here I've already got Pioneer Quest and 1940's House reserved at the local library.

It hasn't been too long since I watched the show, so I'd be happy to participate in the discussion. I must admit, a large part of me would like to have taken part in that experience, and even more of me would love to live in a combination of pioneer life and modern life. I'd have no problem with the small log cabin and relative isolation, but I would really like to keep my electricity and year-round food availability from the modern world.

Crunchy Chicken said...

Ok, so it looks like Pioneer Quest isn't exactly available (unless your library has it). I don't think we all want to invest $225 for a VHS set.

Rosa said...

Darn the BBC!

The CBC did one that was people herring fishing in (I think) Nova Scotia, sometime post-radio but pre-TV.

We didn't catch all the episodes butthere was a great thing where the teenager in one house didn't feel like gardening...so they didn't get to eat vegetables.

DramaMama said...

I loved the Pioneer Quest too! I only watched a little bit of the Frontier House. I'm interested but not sure if I could watch it all...count me as a maybe. I'm in for the discussion anyway! Thanks!

Catherine said...

I saw this when it aired. My favorite part was when the dad of the Malibu family insisted that he was protein deficient because he was losing weight. It turned out that he was just eating normally (for once) and getting exercise. Haha!

It might be interesting to watch this again with my new, ore environmental sensibility.

Jason C said...

I think we watched every episode when this was on originally. I'm glad you brought it up, because I'd love to watch it again - this time with me "green glasses" on. I guess I did just make butter thanks to you! I remember really liking this show and think that I could totally hang in that environment...except for that whole "no Internet" part ;-)

-Jason
http://www.screamtobegreen.com

Lauriebelle said...

Oh yeah! This would be a great discussion!...I would love to see PQ when it's available...I did see Frontier House and wanted to smack the families involved! I found that entire series pretty frustrating to watch...I mean c'mon...why sign up for the show and then bitch about it the entire time?!?!

Anonymous said...

I think it would be great watching and talking about Frontier House! I watched it with my mom. Well I think I would have griped alot too at that time it aired-We just got into raising chickens had no clue....same with the veggie garden. We were so clueless. The only thing we knew then was how to cook w/a dutch oven and fires-and that was what we learned while I was in scouting.

Raw Vegan Mama said...

I loved these shows! My library also has them. I am up for a discussion!

RVM

Jacran Cottage said...

Rosa, the CBC show you referred to was called Quest for the Sea and it was done in Newfoundland and was set in 1937. Cod fishing used to be a huge industry there. That was also a good show. It was produced by the same people who did Pioneer Quest. There was a third series as well called Quest for the Bay about fur traders going from Winnipeg up to Hudson's Bay in the 1840s.

Anonymous said...

I also saw Frontier House when it first came out and enjoyed it. I saw bits of 1940's house but not the whole thing. I would also love a 1930's/Depression House. The Walton's just aren't close enough. I don't have a TV but will check into the local library.. Great Idea!!

St. Blogwen said...

Actually, I didn't mind the griping. If they'd all gone round saying how much fun it was, I wouldn't have believed any of their struggles were real. There's a good chance that citified folks coming out from the East in the real 1880s would have done the same.

What impressed (and sobered) me most was how this seemed to be the first time the kids involved had had a place and purpose in life other than as the objects of their parents' indulgence. On the "frontier," their work and contributions mattered, vitally and critically. They learned genuine self-esteem. When it was time to go back to the 21st century, the kids didn't want to go.

The other thing that got me was how the children learned to appreciate simple things like a single golden orange. Did it really take a lot of "stuff" to make them happy? No, it did not!

I, too, wonder how they're all getting along seven years later.

Anonymous said...

Crunchy-have you considered trying to get ahold of info on how the families are fairing 7 years after the project? We watched frontier house the first time around and agian a couple years ago..and wondered what happened to the families afterwards and if their experience is just was just a faded memory...sounds like agreat disscussion coming though

Crunchy Chicken said...

Anonymous - I'll see what I can do about following up with the families.

Jill said...

I will also chime in to say that Pioneer Quest is MUCH better. It was a much more serious attempt to live in the way of the pioneers. We really enjoyed it.

old world sunflower said...

Has anyone else read that the Clunes split up and Gordon is engaged to or by this time has married Elizabeth An owner of Crustacean Restaurant in California. How sad, I thought he and Adrienne were very good together, maybe the show changed them somehow??

Anonymous said...

No more post? What happened? I also was shocked to hear Gordon and his wife broke up. I just heard it and came to the web to see if it's true and it appears to be... :(. Brooks were my favorite family and I loved Karen she was real and honest I am hoping she is doing well and doesn't think the whole world hates her for saying what was on her mind. I also think the camera guys bated her and filmed her reply's because in one she was so upset she had tears in her eyes you have to wonder what kinda head trip they were playing with Karen.

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