Documentaries

"The Angel of History...sees a single catastrophe. Rubble piles up relentlessty, layers of it are hurled at his feet. He longs to linger, to wake the dead and reconstruct the rubble. But a storm has brewed in paradise." After this ominous quote by Walter Benjamin, writer-director Hubertus Siegert's monumental documentary takes us high above a Berlin undergoing massive reconstruction in the late 90... Read more
Anyone who cares about cinema will relish Berlin-Cinema (Titre Provisoire). Ambitious and illuminating, this documentary focuses on two of cinema's great masters—Wim Wenders and Jean-Luc Godard—in exploring the city of Berlin. Described in poetic images, Berlin is slowly revealed through visual evocations of memory and forgetfulness, emptiness and space, as reference is made to Lang, Ozu, Antonion... Read more
Intellectual heavyweights invent the blood sport of television punditry in this heralded documentary. ... In 1968, long before asinine talking heads dominated US news, ideological nemeses William F Buckley Jr and Gore Vidal duked it out on live TV, turning perennial also-ran ABC into a ratings powerhouse. ... Buckley, a leading light of conservative thought, faced acid-tongued novelist and comment... Read more
“A circus should steer clear of politics.” Along the ancient Silk Road connecting China to Europe, the circus is a deeply rooted cultural phenomenon. In Uzbekistan, it is as alive today as it was in the days of Genghis Khan. This film focuses on two circus artists, Tarsun and Achat, whose lifelong friendship is affected by the differing political choices they have made under the current Uzbek dict... Read more
Following the quest of photographer Anita Khemka, Between the Lines eloquently captures the life and many hardships of India's discarded citizens, the Hijras or eunuchs. ... Living as outcasts on the edge of society, the existence of the Hijras is largely denied. Neither men nor women, their universe is highly inconsistent: they are infertile yet, according to Hindu religion, they have a talent to... Read more
There's no stopping contemporary renaissance man David Byrne. The painter turned art-rocker who became a pop star has more recently turned his interests to photography, musical anthropology and filmmaking. Between The Teeth is his first feature length film (co-directed with David Wild) and like the seminal Stop Making Sense it takes viewers into the front row and surrounds them with song. ... Film... Read more
'This film is about the artist of the 20th century.' – Berlin Film Journal ... The felt-clad, hat-wearing German performance artist was a visionary ahead of his time, his often controversial ideas on art, culture and embodying his own 'brand' more vital than ever some 30 years after his death. ... Andres Veiel's extensive new documentary offers an essential tribute to Beuys' fascinating life, trac... Read more
"A truly terrifying look at the influence the internet can have on today's youth." – Bloody Disgusting ... The true-crime obsession sparked by Making a Murderer and The Jinx continues in knuckle-biting fashion with Beware the Slenderman, a story that is still unfolding in real-time. The film, though, is best viewed with nothing more than a cursory knowledge of the events behind it: in 2014, 12-yea... Read more
Big Dreamers Australia One man's quixotic struggle to build the world's biggest gumboot. ... D Camille Hardman S John Fink P Camille Hardman & John Fink WS Barking Cat Productions TD video/col/2007/55mins ... Read more
“A close cousin to Werner Herzog's wilder non-fiction tales.” - Variety ... Martin Strel is an endurance swimmer who has swum the Mississippi, the Danube and the Yangtze rivers - and now the fifty-something Slovenian has the Amazon in his sights. ... Strel's 66-day journey is equal parts personal quest, performance art and consciousness-raising stunt - he swims to draw attention to pollution and d... Read more
An intimate and illuminating portrait of Bjarke Ingels, the architectural prodigy attempting to bring to life the 2 World Trade Centre project. ... At only 42, Bjarke Ingels has achieved more than most architects could ever dream of. In the last few years alone, he's designed Google's headquarters, the Smithsonian's new campus and the DryLine – New York's post-Hurricane Sandy flood-protection syst... Read more
"David and Goliath on wheels." – Austin Chronicle ... As any cyclist knows, it's dangerous on our roads; drivers are often careless towards bicycles, or downright aggressive. But from behind the wheel, it's clear that many people on bikes flout the laws and ride recklessly. In Melbourne, at least, the divide between the two seems more intransigent than ever. But the problem is a global one. ... Sw... Read more
“We all get dressed for Bill.” - Anna Wintour, Vogue editor-in-chief ... Unassuming and unpretentious, cycling through the streets of Manhattan with his battered Nikon camera, 80-year-old Bill Cunningham doesn't exactly look like someone to hold the fashion world in thrall. Yet every week his columns in the New York Times are pored over by fashion leaders. ... Bill Cunningham New York is a profile... Read more
Jury Prize winner at the recent SXSW Film Festival, Billy the Kid is unquestionably one of the year's highlights of documentary filmmaking, destined to be a classic. Debut filmmaker Jennifer Venditti ventured into a small community in New England, scouting the human fauna of a high school while casting for a feature film. She stumbled on 15-year-old Billy eating alone in the cafeteria and became t... Read more
A cinephile's fantasy: a rare meeting between legendary filmmaker Billy Wilder and one of his biggest fans, German director and cinephile Volker Schloendorff ([The Tin Drum], see also [The Ninth Day]). [Billy, How Did You Do It'] takes the form of an extended conversation conducted over a few days: leisurely, entertaining, often revealing, occasionally gossipy, always intriguing. ... Wilder takes ... Read more
... ... Robin Anderson and Bob Connolly's earlier films First Contact and Joe Leahy's Neigh­bours brought the world the first concerted post-colonial analysis of Australia's dismal record in the near north. Black Harvest takes up the remarkable story five years on with Joe Leahy aged 53. Anderson and Connolly look at Leahy's efforts to import a capitalist agricultur­al mode! into the central mount... Read more
... ... Award-winning director of Tongues Untied (MIFF 92) and Colour Adjustment (MIFF 93) Marlon Riggs' final work is an eloquent and passionate exploration of the complex shifting nature of African-American consciousness 'What is Black?', 'Not Black Enough?' 'Too Black?', what happens to issues of culture, gender and class in the quest for unity? Sparkling with intellectual vigour, this exceptio... Read more
... ... Avoiding didacticism, this film raises some f of the most current concerns facing the i resurgence of Aboriginal culture in Australia today. Underpinning the film, which has its world premiere here, is a reappraisal of the assertion that Aboriginal culture was destroyed in Tasmania. European Australians have maintained comfortable assumptions about Aboriginal culture, assumptions that are ... Read more
Visionary filmmaker and Beyoncé’s Lemonade cinematographer Khalik Allah follows up his acclaimed Field Niggas with a haunting, hallucinatory portrait of his family’s Jamaican homeland that challenges Western perceptions of motherhood and spirituality. ... Continuing on from his groundbreaking work as a photographer and his stunning cinematic portrait of Harlem in Field Niggas, Khalik Allah brings ... Read more
This is not a balanced, even-handed portrayal of the Maori gang who call themselves Black Power. They are one of many such gangs in New Zealand, which have for years inspired fear and mistrust among the greater community. It is a film that takes an affirmative stance. ... The gang members have a history of discontent, criminal activity and alienation from the mainstream of society. This film takes... Read more
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