Documentary

Midge Costin – Making Waves: The Art of Cinematic Sound (2019) (HD)

By OWEN GLEIBERMAN
Film Review: ‘Making Waves: The Art of Cinematic Sound’
A lively movie-love documentary looks at the history of sound design in Hollywood, as innovated by artists of technology like Walter Murch.

Among the pivotal and juicy nuggets of film history recounted in “Making Waves: The Art of Cinematic Sound,” Midge Costin’s wonkishly engaging movie-love documentary, there’s one that speaks volumes about the foundation of the New Hollywood. Read More »

Gillian Wearing – Arena: Everything is Connected – George Eliot’s Life (2019)


Gillian Wearing’s Arena documentary Everything is Connected (BBC Four) is a quietly innovative biography of an author whose works still resonate with their readers and the country within which she wrote. Wearing and George Eliot are a sympathetic match, both playing with a multiplicity of voices, delighting in the layman’s opinion as well as that of the expert. We see Eliot’s intellectuals, but also the modern version of her farmers, priests, and wayward sons. Wearing puts her words in their mouths, allowing them at times to slip into one another, blurring the boundaries between the speakers, their subjects, and their surroundings. Read More »

Paul McGuigan – Searching for Sam: Adrian Dunbar on Samuel Beckett (2019)

“If the work Adrian Dunbar is best known for – the police drama Line of Duty – left us with the tantalising riddle about the identity of the master criminal H, his new documentary tries to unmask an even more evasive man: Samuel Beckett. In Searching for Sam: Adrian Dunbar on Samuel Beckett (BBC Four), the actor we know and love as Superintendent Ted Hastings follows the reportedly too-small-shoe’d footsteps of his great hero. Read More »

Benjamin Berman – The Amazing Johnathan Documentary (2019)

What begins as a documentary following the final tour of a dying magician – “The Amazing Johnathan” – becomes an unexpected and increasingly bizarre journey as the filmmaker struggles to separate truth from illusion. Read More »

Bing Wang – Tie Xi Qu: West of the Tracks – Part 3: Rails (2003) (DVD)

Wang Bing’s West of the Tracks is a nine hour, three part documentary about the decline of Chinese state-run heavy industry.

In 1999 Wang Bing, not long graduated from Beijing’s Film Academy, arrived at the Tie Xi industrial district of Shenyang with little more than a tiny DV camera he didn’t even own. Tie Xi (the name literally means ‘west of the tracks’) was at the time China’s oldest and largest industrial centre, built by the Japanese in World War II, nationalised come the end of the war and subsequently taken over by the newly-founded Communist party. Read More »

Pedro Costa & Thierry Lounas – Où gît votre sourire enfoui? AKA Where Does Your Hidden Smile Lie? (2001)

Documentary about Danièle Huillet and Jean-Marie Straub. While Danièle Huillet and Jean-Marie Straub assemble the third version of “Sicilia!”, Pedro Costa films a “reassembly comedy.” Behind their patience at work, tender and violent, the two filmmakers reveal a certain idea of the cinema, their cinema and their married life. Pedro Costa takes us to the center of his own cinema, in a unique space-time trip, and offers cinephiles the most beautiful gift he can dream of: participating in the interior, in the act of cinematic creation.
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Carlos Benpar – Cineastes contra magnats AKA Filmmakers vs. Tycoons (2005)

This is the first of a series of two documentaries concerning the way the cinema industry is not respecting the author works as they were conceived, in the many ways this can be done. This first documentary is dedicated to technical ways that industry implements thinking to be an improvement to make better public oriented movies, but what’s really happening is that these works are being sadly manipulated. Read More »