Tag Archives: Documentary

July 13

Mermaids

The myth of the mermaid has been told by the ancient Greeks, Inuit communities, and most famously in children’s fairy tales. Popular culture has also played a key role in perpetuating the allure be it the romantic charm of Disney’s The Little Mermaid or the dark musical fun of Agnieszka Smoczynska’s The Lure, our love […]

July 07

Tickling Giants

Bassem Youssef has been called the “Egyptian Jon Stewart” for his popular brand of political satire. In a country where journalists are routinely jailed, or mysteriously go missing, for exercising free speech, the surgeon turned televised comedian is truly one of a kind. As Youssef points out in Sara Taksler’s charming and poignant documentary Tickling […]

June 22

The B-Side: Elsa Dorfman’s Portrait Photography

It is rather fitting that Errol Morris’ most gentle film to date focuses on a photographer who has no interest in taking unhappy photos. His latest work The B-Side: Elsa Dorfman’s Portrait Photography is a loving tribute to his good friend Elsa Dorfman, a self-proclaimed nice Jewish girl from Massachusetts who found her calling in […]

June 08

CSFF 2017: The Surrounding Game

Despite being played by over 40 million players worldwide, the board game Go has yet to reach the same level of obsession in the West as in the East where it originated. Created in ancient China, and currently the oldest board game to be played in its original form, Go is known for its meditative […]

June 08

CSFF 2017: Olympic Pride, American Prejudice

The 1936 Olympics in Berlin will always be remembered for Jesse Owens’ four gold medal performance which was viewed as a triumphant defiance to Hitler and his ideology on race. Though he captured much of the media’s attention, Owen was not the only African-American to make waves at the games. In her latest documentary Olympic […]

June 07

CSFF 2017: Crossing The Line

Danny Lee Harris, 1984: an American track and field athlete who ran the 400-meter hurdles and won silver medals at the Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. He was the guy who always finished behind Edwin Moses, a track and field phenom, known as the guy who never loses – and he never did; he had […]

June 07

CSFF 2017: Hillsborough

The worst sports disaster in the history of England occurred on April 15th, 1989 in Hillsborough Stadium in Sheffield during a semi-final match between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest. During the match, overcrowding in a pen lead to an alarming number of deaths. Daniel Gordon’s documentary Hillsborough recounts the story of this disaster, its causes, and […]

June 06

CSFF 2017: Keepers of the Game

High school funding for sports, and girls’ sports in particular, is on the decline, but fundraising isn’t the only issue for the members of the Salmon River High team. As the first all-Native girls’ lacrosse team in their section, they’ve got something to prove, and not just to their rivals, but to their own community […]

June 03

Murphy’s Law

Life can be summed up as a series of journeys. Each experience takes us down a new road that helps to shape who we are. However, sometimes we can get lost on once familiar paths and loose sight of ourselves in the process. This was the case for Megan Murphy who, after a recent breakup, […]

June 01

Abacus: Small Enough to Jail

Thomas Sung owns and operates Abacus Federal Savings Bank in New York’s Chinatown. The bank, with his daughters Jill (President & CEO) and Vera (Director), serves a clientele composed primarily of local small-business owners of Chinese descent, many first-generation Americans or direct immigrants. Hence, Abacus is an important part of this community, as it gives […]

May 28

Inside Out 2017: Picture This

Andrew Gurza and Stella Palikarova may be in wheelchairs, but they refuse to be confined. The brains behind Deliciously Disabled, a company designed to breakdown the traditional stereotypes of disability in pop culture, the pair gained international attention when they decided to throw the world’s first sex-positive party for people with disabilities. Though their intent […]

May 26

Inside Out 2017: Behind the Curtain: Todrick Hall

James Brown once carried the moniker of being the hardest working man in show business, however Katherine Fairfax Wright’s Behind the Curtain: Todrick Hall makes a convincing case for Todrick Hall being the heir to that mantle. Driven by his passion to express himself creatively, and unafraid to tackle serious issues, Hall has become a […]

May 24

Inside Out 2017: Mansfield 66/67

The documentary Mansfield 66/67 trades in the same camp as its iconic subject: “Blonde Bombshell” Jayne Mansfield. The film focuses on the last two years of the starlet’s life, reveling in the rumors that swirled and the legends that the papers saw fit to print. The film is built from celebrity interviews, discussions with cultural […]

May 23

Inside Out 2017: Free Cece

On one horrific night in June 2011, Cece McDonald was violently attacked while walking with her friends. Attempting to defend herself, Cece, a transgendered woman, accidentally stabbed one of her attackers. Her incarceration sparked an international outcry as it once again highlighted the injustice that the transgender community endure when it comes to the criminal […]

May 06

Hot Docs 2017: The Force

Over at In the Seats, I reviewed the mesmerizing film The Force which plays Hot Docs one last time tomorrow. I have included the film’s Hot Docs synopsis and a link to my review below: The Force Hot Docs synopsis: ”A stunningly intimate fly-on-the-wall account of the beleaguered Oakland Police Department as it battles to […]

May 05

Hot Docs 2017: Island Soldier

A woman clings to a casket draped in the American flag as tears roll down her face. It is a scene that has sadly played out in many states, however, this is not America. This is the Federated States of Micronesia, a remote group of islands that have been supplying the U.S. military with soldiers […]

May 05

Hot Docs 2017: Recruiting for Jihad

Ubaydullah Hussain is an Islamist missionary who is also a recruiter, though he often denies the latter. Despite the philosophical rhetoric he spouts, when it comes to defining what a recruiter is, Hussain dedicates a large chunk of his time to helping young radicalized Norwegian men make their way to battle in Syria. Like a […]

May 04

Hot Docs 2017: Ramen Heads

In Koki Shigeno’s Ramen Heads, the homey Japanese comfort food is lovingly explored, revealing the complex quintessence of broth and noodle.  The documentary focuses on Osamu Tomita, the preeminent ramen chef in Japan and winner of three consecutive end-of-the-year awards for best ramen in the land. We delve into Tomita’s kitchen and learn his ramen […]

May 04

Hot Docs 2017: Hobbyhorse Revolution

I was excited to see Hobbyhorse Revolution because I’d heard of, and was mystified by, ‘hobbyhorsing’ and needed to know more about it. Hobbyhorsing is a lot like the horse competitions you’re used to seeing on TV, or in Olympic events.  Dressage, an equestrian sport, is the highest expression of horse training. In the events, […]

May 03

Hot Docs 2017: The Quiet Zone

I’m not sure you can ever know what it feels like in someone else’s skin. You can identify with certain issues, headaches, a stubbed toe, a bumped funny bone, but you can’t rate someone else’s experience with pain. If you had to live with numerous kinds of pain, and someone told you there was a […]