‘7 Up’ Documentary Series

7up1sevenup2sevenup4sevenuppeterI’ve got a psychological question for you on this Monday morning. Is a person’s character and future placement into society determined when they are children? That’s the driving question in the documentary 7 Up, which follows the lives of fourteen individuals from the time they are seven years old up until now. Every seven years since 1963, the film directors have met with the same fourteen people to see where life has taken them. And guys, it’s crazy compelling.

Luke and I have been glued to our computer (no tv) watching the series for the past week. It may be the most fascinating documentary I have ever watched. You get so attached to the participants, you pick your favorites and then, seven years later, you see where they’ve ended up. You live with them through their school achievements, jobs gained, jobs lost, marriages, break ups…it can be both unduly delighting and heartbreaking to see where they’ve ended up. Every episode, in fact, is a surprise. I was saying to Luke last night that it has the feel of a compelling book that you just can’t put down. You relate to the characters so much that you want to see them succeed and you’ll be damned if you put the book down until you’re satisfied that they’re going to have a happy ending. Needless to say, we stayed up late watching two episodes back to back for two nights this week. We just had to find out what was going to happen to a particular participant.

Have you heard of this documentary? Have you seen it? The reason I bring it up is because the latest installment came out a few days ago: 56 Up is in select theaters right now. It’s crazy to think we’ve followed the same people from seven year’s to 56. I think every teacher, psychologist, politician… everybody should be required to watch this before they leave school. I highly recommend the series, you guys. Highly.

You can watch the series here.

What other documentaries have you enjoyed? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this series if you’ve seen it.


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