Documentary

Tamara Kotevska & Ljubomir Stefanov – Honeyland (2019) (HD)

STORYLINE:
The last female beehunter in Europe must save the bees and return the natural balance in Honeyland, when a family of nomadic beekeepers invade her land and threaten her livelihood. This film which is filmed in Macedonia is an exploration of an observational Indigenous visual narrative that deeply impacts our behavior towards natural resources and the human condition. Read More »

Albert Brooks – Real Life [+Extras] (1979)

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Quote:
“A pushy, narcissistic filmmaker persuades a Phoenix family to let him and his crew film their everyday lives, in the manner of the ground-breaking PBS series ‘An American Family’. However, instead of remaining unobtrusive and letting the family be themselves, he can’t help himself from trying to control every facet of their lives ‘for the good of the show’.” Read More »

Richard Stanley – Voice of the Moon (1990)

Voice of the Moon isn’t that much of a documentary. It’s more of a 30 minute series of images Stanley recorded while he was in Afghanistan in the late 80’s with some Mujahadin rebels [and also the late war journalist Carlos Mavroleon (1958- 1998), who worked as a producer]. Voice follows the their daily attempts to survive in a country being torn to pieces by the Russian invasion. Originally made for UNICEF, children’s charity, and to be aired by BSB. The broadcaster passed the film due to its lack of any actual narration aside from a Sufi poem. Instead, the images are accompanied by Simon Boswell’s score, bringing the whole thing closer to a music video. Read More »

Richard Stanley – The White Darkness (2002)

In The White Darkness anthropologist and cult film-maker Richard Stanley documents the practice and the oppression of voudou in present-day Haiti. In the tradition of his descendent Henry Morton Stanley, explorer and journalist who found Livingstone, but with the advantage of the hand-held camera, he presents an unflinching look at the often shocking practices of voudou. Richard Stanley sees his journey to Haiti – the first colonised country to declare independence – as a ‘closing of the loop’ of imperialist practices within his own family history. In the course of this journey, modern Haiti reveals itself as critically divided between opposing religious beliefs and forces. What becomes apparent is the centrality of voudou to Haitian culture, history, and politics and its ongoing importance in fighting against everyday American military oppression. Read More »

Jean Painlevé – Science is Fiction: 23 Films by Jean Painlevé (2009) (DVD)

The mesmerizing, utterly unclassifiable science films of Jean Painlevé (1902-89) must be seen to be believed: delightful, surrealist-influenced dream works that are also serious science. The French filmmaker-scientist-inventor had a decades-spanning career in which he created hundreds of short films on subjects ranging from astronomy to pigeons to, most famously, such marine-life marvels as the sea horse and the sea urchin. This definitive three-disc Criterion collection brings together the best of these, and includes more than two hours of interviews with the filmmaker, drawn from the eight-part French television series Jean Painlevé Through His Films, directed by Denis Derrien and Hélène Hazera. Also included is The Sounds of Science, an original score by Yo La Tengo to Jean Painlevé’s films, plus an interview with the band. Read More »

André Singer – Night Will Fall (2014) (HD)

Synopsis
When Allied forces liberated the Nazi concentration camps, their terrible discoveries were recorded by army cameramen, revealing for the first time the horror of what had happened

Using British, Soviet and American footage, the Ministry of Information’s Sidney Bernstein collaborated with Alfred Hitchcock to make a film that would provide evidence of the Nazi’s unspeakable crimes. Yet, despite initial support from the British and US governments, the film was shelved. In this compelling documentary by André Singer (executive producer, The Act of Killing), the full story of the filming of the camps and the fate of Bernstein’s project, which has now been restored and completed by Imperial War Museums, can finally be told. Read More »

Manfred Kirchheimer – Stations of the Elevated (1981)

Quote:
This 1979 documentary is one of my all time favorites. The structure is as simple as they
come. Footage of the various New York subways which run on elevated tracks is set to
the music of Charles Mingus (with a little Duke Ellington thrown in for good measure) Read More »