1031 posts tagged with Documentary.
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Wildlife of Los Santos

Onto the Land (yt) - the latest in a series of Grand Theft Auto V nature documentaries in the style of David Attenborough.
posted by Artw on Nov 7, 2015 - 14 comments

Forgotten Silver

Forgotten Silver tells the story of pioneering filmmaker Colin McKenzie. This legendary New Zealander created the worlds first colour film and first talking film. He created the first tracking shot and captured footage of a pre-Wright brothers flight. This "documentary" made by Peter Jackson & Costa Botes caused a furore in New Zealand when it was released 20 years ago today. Watch the first 10 Minutes for free. Rent or buy here. [more inside]
posted by Start with Dessert on Oct 28, 2015 - 14 comments


The Story of Technoviking. July 8, 2000. Matthias Fritsch put down the camera on his lap on the back of a DJ van at Berlin's Fuckparade. Unknowingly, he recorded a dancer that became one of the first massively popular internet video memes, at a time downloading stamp-sized MOV and RM files was still norm. But TECHNOVIKING was not pleased, and a lawsuit left Fritsch bankrupt. This is the full story, as told by the creator of the original video with guest artists, sociologists and lawyers, how he (and Technoviking) lost control of their images, the implications of remix culture, the propagation of internet memes, and the impact of the internet on privacy rights. (Slightly NSFW censored private bits, 5 minutes in.)
posted by lmfsilva on Oct 20, 2015 - 32 comments

You never see fear coming ‘til it swallows you whole

Half-heard whispers. A creaking door. A missed step. From Vertigo to Videodrome, the scariest movies exploit our greatest – and most basic – fears. Fear Itself - BBC Documentary (SLYT NSFW)
posted by fearfulsymmetry on Oct 19, 2015 - 7 comments

Remembering the Palomino, the legendary North Hollywood honky-tonk

On February 19, 1987, it was just another night at the Palomino, with Taj Mahal and The Graffiti Band playing some folk, soul, blues and maybe a bit of jazz. It wasn't unusual for some more major musicians to be in the crowd, but this night George Harrison, Bob Dylan, John Fogerty, and Jesse Ed Davis joined Taj and jammed, with Fogerty playing "Proud Mary" at the prompting of Dylan. But if you want to visit this iconic club today, you'll find yourself in front of Le Monge banquet hall. The Palomino is no more, but you can visit the Valley's legendary honky-tonk with an oral history of The Palomino, and a fan-made VH1 "Behind the Music" style documentary that includes some vintage clips and photos. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Sep 30, 2015 - 9 comments

HUMAN by Yann Arthus-Bertrand

HUMAN is a film by French photographer Yann Arthus-Bertrand (who is primarily known for his aerial photography, especially as collected in the book Earth From Above). The film combines interviews of people from all over the world (over 2,000 were collected as the film was made) with aerial views of humanity in many contexts. The interviews are loosely organized by subject, and the film (in three 90 minute parts) may be viewed for free on YouTube: Part One, Part Two, Part Three.
posted by ocherdraco on Sep 25, 2015 - 4 comments

I Presume You Mean Computers And So Forth?

"I found this collection of outtakes in my archive. I shot these interviews on the streets of New York in the late 70s when I was doing a documentary on the coming of the information age." - Man on the street interviews with New Yorkers in 1979 about science, technology, corporate influence, computers, and paperwork. (SLYT 5:45)
posted by The Whelk on Sep 23, 2015 - 17 comments

I am Fundi

"I Am Fundi" is a short documentary depicting the education system in Uganda and the measures that the organization, Fundibots, is taking to create change. Victor, a Fundi teacher with a challenging past, is changing the future of Uganda by preparing and instilling excitement for science in young children so that when they grow, they will be confident, supported, and prepared for contemporary practices and technological advances.
posted by infini on Sep 22, 2015 - 1 comment

"it was very embarrassing at the time"

Great 1977 video interview with Mrs. Jessie Roestenberg describing a 1954 UFO experience in Staffordshire, West Midlands, England. This blog post shows part of a 1959 newspaper clipping with a photo of Mrs. Roestenberg (presumably from 1954, going by the apparent age of her children in the photo; click image for larger view), and a drawing she made of what she reported seeing, as well as an undated, unsourced photo of the by-now-elderly Mrs. Roestenberg holding an artist's rendering of the figures she described. [more inside]
posted by taz on Sep 17, 2015 - 24 comments

American Experience

Walt Disney - "An unprecedented look at the life and legacy of one of America's most enduring and influential storytellers -- Walt Disney."
posted by kliuless on Sep 16, 2015 - 17 comments

Amazing Grace, Unprecedented Court Action

Perhaps you're familiar with Amazing Grace, the biggest selling gospel album of all time and most certainly the biggest selling album of Aretha Franklin's career. What you may not know is that Sidney Pollack filmed a documentary during the recording of that album. It was never completed due to analog technical issues, but 43 years later, in our modern digital age, those have been overcome and it's about to hit the festival circuit. But hold on! Literally moments before it was due to make its world premiere at Telluride, Franklin got an unprecedented court injunction to stop the movie from being shown. And the film has also been pulled from Toronto's film festival. Franklin filed an amended lawsuit yesterday to prevent any screenings, specifically citing any seeking to find a distributor.
posted by hippybear on Sep 16, 2015 - 41 comments

The inner life of the fig

The Queen of Trees is a documentary (52 minutes) on the sycomore fig tree, focusing on the intricate mutualism between a fig tree and its fig wasp. Filmmakers Victoria Stone and Mark Deeble spent two years camped out in the Kenyan bush to capture fascinating scenes of life around the sycomore, including inside the figs.
posted by parudox on Sep 13, 2015 - 17 comments

They're very expensive-sounding sounds

Skrillex, Diplo, and Justin Bieber collaborate on a song and talk about the process in this NYT mini-doc.
posted by swift on Aug 25, 2015 - 83 comments

The Indigo Girls - The Making Of One Lost Day

30+ year veteran folk-rock duo Indigo Girls release their first ever behind the scenes making of documentary film about the recording of One Lost Day, their first album in four years.(Vimeo) [1h5m] (YouTube) [more inside]
posted by hippybear on Aug 21, 2015 - 21 comments

surviving in a hungry sea of white noise

Brooklyn's Afropunk festival has gone from a small gathering of friends celebrating an underground documentary to a massive, celebrated boutique fashion and mainstream music cornucopia. Some say they have sold out. But in Pitchfork, author Hanif Abdurraqib, (previously) makes a case that it still represents something very real and important to black youth culture.
posted by Potomac Avenue on Aug 21, 2015 - 9 comments

Zozobra, making Santa Fe's fiesta celebrations more with pyrotechnics

In 1924, the longest-running community festival in the United States, Las Fiestas de Santa Fe, got a bit weirder, thanks to the artist Will Shuster. That year, he found inspiration in the burning of Judas effigies, specifically the practice including firecrackers, performed by the Yaqui Indians of northwest Mexico (Google books preview) and he created Zozobra (meaning anxiety, worry in Spanish, nicknamed "Old Man Gloom" or "the gloomy one"). The burning effigy was joined by a fire spirit dancer around 1933, originally created by Jacques Cartier, formerly a ballet dancer in New York. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief on Aug 19, 2015 - 6 comments

JK Rowling: "[he] has sat in a darkened room and been witty on paper..."

"He probably finds himself the most attractive person that you could possibly meet." James O'Briend, friend of Morrissey, in the documentary, The Importance of Being Morrissey (2003) [SLYT]. From the video details: "UK TV Documentary Narrated by Christopher Eccleston, With contributions from Johnny Marr, Alan Bennett, Kathy Burke, Noel Gallagher, Nancy Sinatra, Linder & others."
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Aug 11, 2015 - 11 comments

Sunday, July 2nd, 1978

Farewell - ETAOIN SHRDLU: a short film documenting the production of the last edition of the New York Times to use hot metal typesetting. [via PrintingFilms.com]
posted by cosmic.osmo on Aug 3, 2015 - 13 comments

Don't worry, you probably won't be secretly murdered if you watch this.

In 1991, a documentary, intended to be the first of a series on celebrity businessmen, was completed. It was screened twice, but its subject prevented its release and it was clear that continuing the series wasn't worth the trouble. So why has that film been released almost a quarter of a century later? Because that same businessman is now running for president. Trump: What's the Deal? (trailer, direct Vimeo link to full film, unofficial YouTube mirror)
posted by BiggerJ on Aug 2, 2015 - 75 comments

“There was art before him and art after him and they were not the same.”

Caravaggio [Part 1] [Part 2] [Part 3] [Part 4] [Part 5] [Part 6] [Part 7] Art critic Robert Hughes reflects on the work of troubled Italian artist Caravaggio.
posted by Fizz on Aug 1, 2015 - 7 comments

"I knew that the traditional role was not going to be enough for me.”

Marlene Sanders’ Feminist Legacy [Slate obit] - "She wrote of her accomplishments: 'As I look back on my career, the women's movement provided an exceptional point when time, place and position all came together to give me the power and focus to contribute to the country’s awareness of the status of women.'" [more inside]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jul 16, 2015 - 4 comments

"You can go wild on the wall, everything that comes to your imagination"

"The thing I find very exciting is waiting for the subway train and sometimes you'll get a glorious one that arrives decorated like a birthday cake!" Watching My Name Go By is a short 1976 BBC documentary about graffiti, artists, and graffiti artists in New York City. The film is based on Norman Mailer's 1974 essay for Esquire magazine, "The Faith of Grafitti." [via]
posted by Room 641-A on Jul 16, 2015 - 5 comments

Sugar Plantations in the West Indies

The history of British slave ownership has been buried: now its scale can be revealed The T71 files have been converted into an online database; a free, publicly available resource.
posted by infini on Jul 12, 2015 - 38 comments

“I've been a boy for three years and I was a girl for six.”

Esteemed PBS series Frontline has produced a new documentary profiling a number of trans children and their families in the U.S. today: Growing Up Trans. There will be a Google Hangout with the producers and several of the film's subjects on July 1, at 3 PM EST. Inside, please find a number of articles released by Frontline to flesh out the film. [more inside]
posted by Going To Maine on Jul 1, 2015 - 35 comments

“I just want to spend my money on food & beers & going to hear music."

Chef Paxx Caraballo Moll is a rock-n-roll chef who creates inventive vegetarian food with the native foods of Puerto Rico.

They're also one of nine individuals profiled in Mala Mala, a feature length documentary exploring the lives of young Puerto Ricans in the trans community that recently premiered at the Tribeca film festival. [more inside]
posted by Juliet Banana on Jun 30, 2015 - 8 comments

A T O M I C !

Top Of The Pops - The Story 0f 1980 [SLYT]
posted by joseph conrad is fully awesome on Jun 27, 2015 - 30 comments

American Revolutionary

For this weekend only, you can watch the award winning documentary "American Revolutionary: The Evolution of Grace Lee Boggs". "It tells the story of Chinese American and Detroit icon who has spent 70-some years as a writer, activist and philosopher with an eye on social justice and change. The portrait by filmmaker Grace Lee (who is not related) finds Grace Lee Boggs at the forefront of major movements of the past century.." Today, June 27th, 2015, is Grace's 100th birthday.
posted by HuronBob on Jun 27, 2015 - 9 comments

Under cover of darkness, female janitors face rape and assault

Rape on the Night Shift: Every night, as most of us head home, janitors across America, many of them women, begin their night shift. They are often alone or isolated in empty buildings — and vulnerable to sexual violence. On Tuesday, a PBS Frontline/Reveal investigation explored ways sexual violence against janitors is going unreported and unpunished. All content is SFW, but some may find descriptions in the links in this post disturbing. [more inside]
posted by zarq on Jun 26, 2015 - 10 comments

“It is an artist's duty to reflect the times.”

What Happened, Miss Simone? [YouTube] [Trailer] Helmed by Oscar-nominated director Liz Garbus (Bobby Fischer Against the World, Killing in the Name), the fully authorized doc incorporates concert footage, archival material, and interviews taking place over three decades. The movie will be available on Netflix June 26. [more inside]
posted by Fizz on Jun 23, 2015 - 15 comments

the rejected

archivists recoverlost1961 tv documentary on homosexuality
posted by and they trembled before her fury on Jun 17, 2015 - 16 comments

Nothing that surrounds us is object, all is subject.

Archive.org gives us the two part (1) The Threshold of Liberty (II) from the Robert Hughes 1980 BBC documentary Shock of the New.
This episode examined the surrealists' attempts to make art without restrictions. The title is a reference to a piece by René Magritte.
( Unfortunately all the main links in this fine post by Trurl are gone )
posted by adamvasco on Jun 9, 2015 - 3 comments

“Doubt makes a man decent.”

Harry Crews: Guilty As Charged [YouTube]
Examines the life and work of Harry Crews. Appearances by James Dickey, Byron Crews, Maggie Powell, Johnny Fieber and William Schafer. Music by Frank Schaap and Byron Crews. Associate Producers: Robert Morris and Latelle Lafollette. Camera and Lighting by Mike Brower and Arthur Rouse. Edited by Tom Thurman and Mike Brower.
posted by Fizz on Jun 9, 2015 - 10 comments

Lahore Landing: 'an interactive documentary on another side of Pakistan'

Lahore Landing, an interactive documentary. "It all started when Taahira went to Karachi for a journalism internship ... Over Skype calls, she shared with us her experience – from underground indie rock concerts to alfresco BBQ nights. It surprised us. It seemed that all the media shared about life in Pakistan was a world of violence and terrorism when it was a lot more than that." [more inside]
posted by undue influence on Jun 3, 2015 - 2 comments

The Best Band You've Never Heard Of

Tell Me Do You Miss Me - A Film About Luna is a strangely fascinating 2006 documentary about the indie band's 2005 farewell tour. It often seems more like a vacation souvenir home video than a documentary, surprisingly intimate and personal, with obvious affection, tension and rehashing of old arguments between band founder Dean Wareham and guitar player Sean Eden. Surprisingly open and honest, it's a slice of life we rarely get to see, we're so used to tour films being about really famous bands, not smaller bands who may be able to make a living from their music, but who are only going to make money on tour if they sell enough merchandise (that gets lost by the airline). Really worth a watch, and available in its entirety on YouTube. [more inside]
posted by biscotti on May 28, 2015 - 32 comments

You won't regret that tattoo.

You won't regret that tattoo. Single link Vimeo. A short, sweet first documentary by Angie Bird, via the Tattoo Historian at Tattoo History Daily. (Somewhat previously on the Tattoo Historian, Dr. Anna Felicity Friedman.)
posted by blue suede stockings on May 27, 2015 - 103 comments

B.B. St. Roman

B.B. St. Roman [formerly Barbara Becker] is the only staff member for the New Orleans Police Department Homeless Assistant Unit. Before helping the homeless, she traveled the world, recording sound for documentaries .... And at one point, she became the tour manager for Dr. John, Louisiana musician and legend. Her film audio credits include Mother Teresa and Shamans of the Blind Country a film ethnography of the Himalayas. TEDx talk, and here's her Facebook page.
posted by latkes on May 22, 2015 - 6 comments

“Everything is some kind of a plot, man.”

A Journey Into the Mind of P. [YouTube]
A documentary, written & directed by Donatello Dubini & Fosco Dubini, mostly on the authors [Thomas Pynchon] reclusivness, how it's been dealt with by some hysterical fans, old friends, critics... containing some interesting interviews & speculations on the themes of Gravity's Rainbow & how they relate to the historical realities of the american fifties & sixties, the paranoid politics of cold war logic, megalomaniac experimental psychology, the callous mindset of military engineering, & so on...
[more inside] posted by Fizz on May 10, 2015 - 6 comments

I'm a man in a dress, and I'm not afraid to show that

Beautiful by Night is a short documentary by James Hosking about veteran drag queens in San Francisco. [more inside]
posted by frimble on Apr 18, 2015 - 3 comments

K.C. Jeebies

There is, with any great artist, a little manic-ness and insanity. Tropic of Cancer is one of my favorite books. And [author] Henry Miller had this work ethic, where he would get out of bed every day and force himself to write five pages. It taught me that if you do the work, you progress. So many people are content to settle. My dad was exceptionally ambitious. But he had a lot thrown on him, exceeding his ambition. He wanted his band to be successful. But he didn't want to be the fucking voice of a generation.
Excerpts from an interview with Frances Bean Cobain for Rolling Stone's cover story in anticipation of the HBO documentary Montage of Heck.
posted by mannequito on Apr 8, 2015 - 50 comments

STREETWISE, a riveting 1984 doc that follows runaway kids in Seattle

Streetwise is an oscar nominated 1984 vérité doc that follows teenage vagrants and prostitutes in downtown Seattle. [more inside]
posted by rageagainsttherobots on Mar 23, 2015 - 13 comments

The Sigh Guy

New documentary Tab Hunter Confidential is the story of the squeaky-clean 1950s teen idol whose career was nearly wrecked by gay rumours broken by the notorious Confidential magazine. Rumours that happened to be true. [more inside]
posted by Gin and Broadband on Mar 22, 2015 - 12 comments

Winter Birdwatching in Jersey City

A short film.
posted by rtha on Mar 16, 2015 - 3 comments

"The Pueblo people orchestrated the unthinkable"

Frontera! Revolt and Rebellion on the Rio Grande (20:06; 2014) is an experimental animated documentary that briefly describes the Narváez, de Niza, Coronado, and Oñate expeditions en route to an account of Po'pay and the Pueblo Revolt. It features music by Greg Landau ("Women of the City" with Omar Sosa) with lyrics and vocals by Deuce Eclipse (SoundCloud; "Que Pasa" with J-Boogie).
posted by Monsieur Caution on Mar 14, 2015 - 4 comments

Pie Fight '69: street theatrical as a soft bomb tossed in protest

"There are several ideas of what happened here this evening. It could have been a fantastic promotion stunt, or a demonstration against the film establishment, but a lot of people think it was actually a motion picture being produced here at the film festival. The only thing sure is that the 13th annual San Francisco Film Festival got off to a smashing start." That's a bit of reporter humor, which accurately captures the diverse goals and ideas behind Pie Fight '69, a most memorable yet virtually forgotten piece of San Francisco's cinema history. The film from a half dozen cameras, run by members of Grand Central Station independent film collective, was lost until 1999. The rediscovered film was cut into a short documentary, which you can see on Archive.org, YouTube, and Vimeo.
posted by filthy light thief on Mar 12, 2015 - 2 comments

Why Would Anyone Want to Kill Brianna Wu?

"What anyone can see by looking closely at Wu is an entrepreneurial archetype. She's not a countercultural artist like Quinn or a crusader like Sarkeesian." Inc. profiles Brianna Wu.
The piece mentions Wu's being interviewed for the movie GTFO, a documentary on women and video game culture. The New York Times has just run a feature on the film and its director, Shannon Sun-Higginson.
posted by Going To Maine on Mar 7, 2015 - 63 comments

Love Your Subjects

Albert Maysles, acclaimed documentary filmmaker and pioneer of “direct cinema,” has died at 88. Best known for the films Grey Gardens (previously) and Gimme Shelter (in which he captured the murder of 18 year-old Meredith Hunter by a Hell’s Angel at the Stones’ legendary 1969 Altamont Free Concert), Maysles (along with his brother David) created an astounding array of diverse documentary films including the Beatles first trip to the US and films about Christo, Orson Welles, Jessye Norman, and on and on. His most recent film, about NYC style maven Iris Apfel will be released on April 29th. A film community reflects. [more inside]
posted by chococat on Mar 6, 2015 - 29 comments

The Unknown War

The Unknown War: WWII And The Epic Battles Of The Russian Front, the 20-episode documentary of the Nazi-Germany/Soviet Union conflict, first aired in the United States in 1978 but was subsequently pulled after the Soviet Union invasion of Afghanistan in 1979. "The footage was edited from over 3.5 million feet of film taken by Soviet camera crews from the first day of the war, 22 June 1941, to the Soviet entry into Berlin in May 1945. Most of these films have never been seen outside this documentary series." It is available in full (1040 minutes). [more inside]
posted by cwest on Mar 5, 2015 - 24 comments

Two Films of Johan Grimonprez

Johan Grimonprez is a Belgian multimedia artist, filmmaker, and curator. He is most known for two 'not-quite documentary' films which use experimental forms to explore the relationship between media, politics, history, identity, and manipulation in the second half of the twentieth century: 1997's dial H-I-S-T-O-R-Y , which traces the history of skyjacking throughout the 20th century using montages, and Double Take, which explores the Cold War through the lens of real and imagined versions of Alfred Hitchcock and Folger's instant coffee commercials. Both are available online. [more inside]
posted by MCMikeNamara on Feb 22, 2015 - 3 comments

The Measure of a Person is What They Do With What They Have

Beginning in 1920, Robert J. Flaherty spent a year in the Canadian Arctic (Port Harrison in Northern Quebec) documenting the daily struggles of an Inuk man named Nanook. The resulting feature-length film, an American silent documentary with elements of docudrama, was the first of its kind, in a style that would eventually become known as "salvage ethnography." Nanook of the North: A Story Of Life and Love In the Actual Arctic (1922) [more inside]
posted by zarq on Feb 17, 2015 - 10 comments

"You'll never write about me again."

I know you may not care, but I do. I care about how to tell a personal story like the one I’m about to write, without falling into a million traps laid out in front of you. I’m thinking of the issues of trust and betrayal that come across between a writer and his or her subject. The transfiguration that inevitably takes place in writing. And my friendship with Philip Roth: in which trust was the fundamental condition, despite ambiguity playing a subtler, if ever-present, role.
posted by nevercalm on Feb 7, 2015 - 7 comments

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