A scene from DECADE FOR DECISION, an RKO Radio Pictures release.

Decade for Decision (1957)

Decade for Decision isn’t the best documentary short subject. It’s a collection of shots of colleges with narration. The information, however, is (historically) outstanding.

For example, Decision opens talking about how American students are years behind their foreign (in this case, the Soviets) counterparts. A little later, there’s talk about how no one would want to be a teacher at their pay rate….

Just before a discussion of the American financial aid system being broken.

There are differences, of course. Men wear suit jackets, company tuition reimbursement programs, there’s talk about the importance of domestic industry.

It gets boring fast; oddly, the best “scenes” are later tedious ones, when Decision is more focused.

The short ends with a plea to the American public to take education seriously.

Watching it fifty years later, Decade for Decision is just depressing. If it were less propaganda, more contemporary flavor, it’d hold up better.

1/3Not Recommended


Written by Ardis Smith; produced by Jay Bonafield; released by RKO Radio Pictures.

Narrated by Dwight Weist.


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