Results tagged “Documentary”

Cameraperson Criterion Collection Blu-ray Review: Beautiful, Sad, Wonderful

Cameraperson tells the story of one filmmaker through the dozens of movies she's shot.
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Sometimes when I can’t sleep, I’ll lie in bed at night and think about all the different houses and apartments I’ve lived in. I’ll mentally walk through each room, picturing what it looked like and describing them as if to a friend. Sometimes the rooms are very clear to me - I can picture it as if I'm there. Sometimes they are more fuzzy and I have to think really hard about what they looked like. Sometimes I can’t remember them at all. There is one house I briefly lived in on Grand Lake whose guest bedrooms are a mystery

Leonard Cohen: I'm Your Man Blu-ray Review: An Awkward Documentary Hybrid

From the department of celebrity death cash-ins: An unnecessary Blu-ray upgrade of a forgettable concert film/biography mash-up.
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We’d already hit capacity overload on the “Fuck 2016” meme by the time Leonard Cohen’s death was announced on Nov. 10, but that didn’t mean the gut-punch of his passing hurt any less. Less than a month before, Cohen had solemnly announced, “I am ready to die” in David Remnick’s exhaustive New Yorker profile, before abruptly reversing course a few days after the interview’s publication at a listening session for his final album, You Want It Darker. “I said I was ready to die recently, and I think I was exaggerating. I’ve always been into self-dramatization. I intend to live

Cameraperson Criterion Collection Blu-ray Review: No Better Film Experience Last Year

A soulful and illuminating document of the human experience.
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When it comes to human honesty, there is no better genre of film stronger than the documentary. In a time where special effects, explosions, CGI, and even 3D basically dominate the box office, it is very refreshing to know that some movies would rather deal with reality and what the world is really like. Director Kirsten Johnson's fascinating 2016 film, Cameraperson, shows us what being human truly means to be. In this brilliant snapshot, or series of tableux, Johnson captures in real time, stories of people, places, and things. Whether it is a young boxer in his first match in

2017 Oscar-nominated Documentary Short Films Review

The rundown on the five nominees for the documentary short subject category.
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Through the wars of the past and the present to the wars that we battle in our own bodies, this year’s Academy Award nominees in the Documentary Short Film category all tackle remarkable subject matter that reflect the power and courage of the human spirit. They show that human connection and caring for one another is one of the greatest gifts we can give or receive. All these films center on the theme of hope. 4.1 Miles (director Daphne Matziraki, USA, 26 minutes) This documentary follows Kyriakos Papadopoulos, a captain in the Greek Coast Guard who is caught in the

American Masters: By Sidney Lumet Review: See the Master in a New Light

An engrossing and thoughtfully revealing portrait of an American cinema master.
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The great Sidney Lumet (1924-2011) was an American original, a genius storyteller, and a quintessential New York filmmaker whose versatile gifts created some of the greatest films ever made, including 12 Angry Men, Serpico, Dog Day Afternoon, and Network among others. However, as amazing as he was, he is still highly underrated in film circles today. Award-winning filmmaker Nancy Buirski's enlightening documentary, By Sidney Lumet, gives viewers a chance to see the master himself in a new light, a light that should continue to shine over film history. This portrait with Lumet himself, which was filmed three years before his

The Search for Weng Weng DVD Review: The Height of the World's Shortest Star

Filipino cinema's least-likely leading man was only 2-foot 9-inches tall, but his appeal to cult cinema aficionados is immeasurable.
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For anyone who has only experienced the mainstream world of cinema, venturing into the output of the Filipino film industry ‒ particularly its numerous exploitation movies made during the '70s and '80s ‒ can seem akin to jumping head first into a swimming pool with very little water in it. I still vividly recall the first time I sat down to cast my disbelieving orbs on Bobby A. Suarez's The One Armed Executioner, wherein Franco Guerrero and his giant pompadour sought vengeance against the evil men who killed his bride and left him minus an extremity. It was the closest

808 Movie Review: All About That Bass

Documentary about the Roland TR-808 drum machine explores its indelible contributions to modern music.
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The singular defining aspect of all modern popular music is its deep, thumping bass. This new documentary explores the principal electronic architect of that bass, the Roland TR-808 drum machine. No other piece of musical equipment in history is known so globally by its model number, and that 808 moniker continues to receive frequent shoutouts and respect in all genres with a beat, including electronic, pop, R&B, and hip hop. The filmmakers take a historical approach to the subject, tracing the 808’s emergence as a powerful music tool in the 1970s through to its continued current use. While they don’t

Mifune: The Last Samurai Movie Review: A Wonderful Remembrance

A straightforward biography that reveals little more than the story of the man's life.
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Award-winning filmmaker Steven Okazak's documentary tells the story of Japanese actor Toshiro Mifune, who together with director Akira Kurosawa became worldwide sensations because of their work together on 16 films, from Drunken Angel (1948) to Red Beard (1965). Narrator Reeves says they were "some of the greatest movies ever made...Together, they influenced filmmaking and popular culture around the world." Their partnership was such an integral part of their lives, it's not a surprise it's an integral part of this documentary as well. Because film was such an important part of what he became, the story of Mifune: The Last Samurai

Last of the Mississippi Jukes DVD Review: Blues History Revisited

This riveting documentary chronicles the history of the Mississippi juke joint and the ongoing struggle to preserve remaining clubs.
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Actor Morgan Freeman, who co-owns Mississippi juke joint Ground Zero, describes Delta Blues as “American classical music.” The documentary Last of the Mississippi Jukes—originally released in 2003 and now available on DVD—chronicles one state’s fight to preserve not only Delta Blues but the juke joints that introduced the blues. This loving tribute spotlights two venues, one older and the other a recreation of traditional juke joints. While the fate of these two places diverge, they share one common interest: fostering local talent and maintaining the tight community that the blues formed. Juke joints first appeared on southern plantations after the

Can't Stop The Show: The Return Of KIX Review: The Band Is Back Sounding As Good As They Always Have

KIX and '80s heavy metal fans will not be disappointed with this new release.
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Formed in 1977, the hard rock band from Hagerstown, Maryland broke into the mainstream music scene with their fourth album, the platinum selling Blow My Fuse in 1988. After releasing two more albums that did not have the same success, KIX wouldn’t release another album for almost 20 years. In 2014, they released Rock Your Face Off. Following up that release, the band put together a documentary detailing all the time and hard work they put into creating new music. The biggest challenge was writing the music itself. Former bass player and author of most of the band’s previous songs,

TCM Programming Alert for the Week of 11-07-16

Vote with your remote this week.
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During the first full week of November, TCM begins airing its twice-weekly spotlight on documentaries. On Friday, Star-of-the-month Natalie Wood co-stars in Rebel Without A Cause. TCM Spotlight: To Tell the Truth Hosted by Alec Baldwin - Primary (1960) Monday, November 7 at 8:00 p.m. (ET) The Wisconsin Primary of 1960 sets John Kennedy on the road to the White House. Saboteur (1942) Tuesday, November 8 at 9:15 p.m. (ET) A young man accused of sabotage goes on the lam to prove his innocence. TCM Spotlight: To Tell the Truth Hosted by Alec Baldwin - Prelude to War (1943) Wednesday,

50 Years of Star Trek DVD Review: This Mission Failed

Don't bother beaming me up.
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The entertainment phenomenon that is Star Trek celebrated its 50th anniversary in September, and with the first television series giving life to five more series and thirteen motion pictures, the incredible fan base was set for something spectacular to commemorate such an auspicious occasion. One could argue that there would be no way to please everyone if a documentary of the history of Star Trek was to be created. If you were to fill a room with Star Trek aficionados and open the discussion on which was the best series, the best captain, or the best motion picture, you would

TCFF 2016 Review: Iron Will: A Veteran's Battle with PTSD

Iron Will shatters perceptions and shows men who are going through very normal behaviors when dealing with such heavy things.
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Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD is something many people may recognize but few seldom really know. When I first heard the word, the image that popped into my head was of Apocalypse Now when Martin Sheen was in the hotel room before his mission started. Most of us associate the word as something veterans get for being in the war too long. The common stereotype I can think of, and this is a totally made up scenario, let's say you're at a family dinner and your uncle, who is a Vietnam vet, asks what everyone wants to eat. Cousin

TCM to Air 'To Tell The Truth,' Month-long Programming Spotlight on Documentaries

Hosted By Alec Baldwin, To Tell The Truth airs every Monday and Wednesday throughout November.
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Press release: Turner Classic Movies (TCM) will look at the influential history of non-fiction films in To Tell The Truth, a month-long programming special featuring more than 50 films exploring the history of this effective and important art form. Hosted by Oscar-nominee and TCM-veteran Alec Baldwin, the special will feature several TCM premieres including two episodes of the ongoing series To Tell The Truth: A History of Documentary Film (2014). The programming special premieres Nov. 2 at 8 pm ET and will air every Monday and Wednesday during the month. Documentaries have been an important part of moviemaking since the

Being Canadian DVD Review: Is Canada the Best Country in the World?

I hope anyone that watches it will gain a little more of an appreciation for this beautiful amazing country.
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People often tell me when my Canadian side is showing. This is a huge compliment as everyone seems to think of Canadians as the nicest people. Being Canadian delightfully tries to educate the world on the misconceptions about Canada, such as why Canadians are always saying sorry, while highlighting all of the things that do make the country great. Calgary native Rob Cohen decided it was time to answer some questions about his beloved homeland after moving to Hollywood to be a writer and seeing how uninformed people were on Canada. He starts his adventure in Nova Scotia and traveled

The Everly Brothers: Harmonies from Heaven DVD Review: An Appreciation of the Duo's Impact on Early Rock 'n' Roll

The rock pioneers set the standard for impeccable harmonies, and wowed audiences with their special blend of rock, country, and R&B.
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Early rock pioneers the Everly Brothers set the standard for impeccable harmonies, and wowed audiences with their special blend of rock, country, and R&B. The duo gets their just due in the BBC documentary The Everly Brothers: Harmonies from Heaven, newly released on DVD and Blu-ray. Featuring interviews with surviving Everly brother Don, Keith Richards, Art Garfunkel, Albert Lee, Dave Edmunds, and Graham Nash, the film is a thoroughly fascinating look at an underrated family act. Harmonies from Heaven follows Don and Phil from their early years as singers with the Everly Family, a group comprised of the brothers and

All Things Must Pass DVD Review: The Rise and Fall of Tower Records

From its humble beginning in a drug store in Northern California to its grim demise.
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​When I started buying music as a teen, The Wherehouse, Sam Goody, and Licorice Pizza could never compare to the joy of spending hours in a Tower Records looking for and listening to music. I had two Tower Records that I would frequent, the one in Costa Mesa near what was once Rock 'N' Java, and the Tustin Marketplace store. As an adult who spent and spends a lot of time in Los Angeles, the Tower on Sunset became a required stop during trips to Hollywood. Tower Records became a bastion of hope when after four days on the road

Michael Fiore and Eric Sharkey Talk Floyd Norman: An Animated Life

The directors of Floyd Norman: An Animated Life talk Disney, their subject and free art.
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Floyd Norman is an animator with a big heart, and that's evident from hearing Michael Fiore and Eric Sharkey - the directors of Floyd Norman: An Animated Life - discuss him. They sat down with Cinema Sentries to talk about Norman, the editing process, and what happens when you're following the nicest man in the world. What was your background with the Walt Disney Company? Were you guys just fans of the studio or was there something more? Michael Fiore: We have no connection with the company. We are both Disney lovers and grew up on the great movies. As

Floyd Norman: An Animated Life Movie Review: Delightfully Animated

Floyd Norman's life is landmark, no matter what.
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My knowledge of the Walt Disney Company meant I immediately recognized the name Floyd Norman. No matter what he says, Norman is considered a legendary animator, for both breaking the studio's unspoken color barrier and for being one of the rare animators able to gain knowledge from Disney's "Nine Old Men." He now stands as one of the last animators to have worked with Walt Disney; the last living animator to work on The Jungle Book. With such a record of distinction it's amazing to hear Norman's just now receiving a documentary. Floyd Norman: An Animated Life charts Norman's rise

Raiders! The Story of the Greatest Fan Film Ever Made Review: An Incredibly Involving Documentary

A wonderful and inspiring look at fandom, friendship, and childhood dreams come true, no matter what the cost.
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The power of film has its perks: you're able to collect anything and everything about film, you find and make friends with people who feel the same way about film as you do, and you become apart of a very special community that is passionate about this ongoing medium. Fandom can take a whole new life of its own, whether you're a trekkie, star wars fan, or comic book lover. If you're Chris Strompolos, Eric Zala and Jayson Lamb, you go even further and you make a shot-by-shot remake of an all-time classic film, Steven Spielberg's 1981 masterpiece, Raiders of
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