Podcasts

Podcast #6 – The Act of Killing

No Comments 25 July 2013

The Act of KillingThis week we discuss Joshua Oppenheimer‘s The Act of Killing, now in theaters. It follows a group of gangsters in Indonesia, who were responsible for many of the killings in the anti-Communist purge of 1965-1966. Oppenheimer has given them the opportunity to make a film re-enacting the violence, a device which Daniel finds more effective than Chris. We’ll address its implications, and whether The Act of Killing really has anything new to offer. Then we address the charges that Oppenheimer did not include enough historical context, as well as Errol Morris‘s contention that documentaries should not simply be filmed versions of books.

For more on documentaries, check Christopher’s Documentary Channel Blog and follow us on Twitter at @DSWalber and @TheFilmCynic

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Links!

Chris’s interview with Joshua Oppenheimer.

Daniel’s thoughts on Hannah Arendt.

Benedict Anderson’s essay, Impunity and Reenactment: Reflections on the 1965 Massacre in Indonesia and its Legacy.

Errol Morris’s essay on the film, The Murders of Gonzago.

Watch the Films:

Where to see The Act of Killing

Camp 14: Total Control Zone on Netflix

Enemies of the People on Netflix and Amazon Instant

The Redemption of General Butt Naked on Amazon Instant

Stream War Don Don on the film’s website

 

Podcasts

Podcast #5 – The Top 5 Docs of 2013 (So Far)

No Comments 18 July 2013

 

Sarah Polley Camera

2013 is halfway gone and we’ve already seen plenty of list-worthy documentaries. This week we each count down our top five docs of the year so far, from the highlights of the Docurama Festival to some exciting work that came out of the Toronto International Film Festival last year. On the way we discuss the boundaries between fiction and non-fiction, films we might respect rather than love, and which doc is the best “issue film” of 2013.

 

For more on documentaries, check Christopher’s Documentary Channel Blog and follow us on Twitter at @DSWalber and @TheFilmCynic

To download the podcast, right click here and choose “Save Link As…

Download MP3 File

Subscribe on iTunes!

 

Podcasts

Podcast #4 – 20 Feet from Stardom

No Comments 11 July 2013

20 Feet from Stardom

We’re back! 20 Feet from Stardom is so good that it jolted us out of our hiatus. We review the film, Morgan Neville‘s documentary music doc. Finally, we turn to some burning questions: Can movies be fun? And, should someone make a doc entirely about about backup singers. Is it better than Searching for Sugar Man? Yes. We talk about why that is, and what makes for a good saxophones in pop music?

 

 

For more on documentaries, check Christopher’s Documentary Channel Blog and follow us on Twitter at @DSWalber and @TheFilmCynic

To download the podcast, right click here and choose “Save Link As…

Download MP3 File

Subscribe on iTunes!

 

Watch the Docs:

Where to see 20 Feet from Stardom: http://twentyfeetfromstardom.com/dates

Standing in the Shadows of Motown: on Amazon Instant

Rejoice and Shout: on Netflix Streaming and Amazon Instant

Beware of Mr. Baker: on Amazon Instant

Hit So Hard: on Netflix Streaming

Podcasts

Podcast #3 – A Discussion of Les Blank

No Comments 18 April 2013

This week we dive into the work of the late Les Blank, one of the great documentarians of American culture. We’re joined by Charlotte Cook, Director of Programming for Hot Docs, for a discussion of Blank’s unique style and why her festival is honoring him this month with their Outstanding Achievement Award. After a brief word about what else Hot Docs has to offer, we turn to a conversation about our favorite Blank films. Finally, we recommend a few more contemporary documentaries that fit into the upbeat, musical spirit of his work.

Correction: when Christopher says “John Waters” when talking about ’80s teen movies he meant to say “John Hughes.”

 

For more on documentaries, check Christopher’s Documentary Channel Blog and follow us on Twitter at @DSWalber and @TheFilmCynic

To download the podcast, right click here and choose “Save Link As…

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Subscribe on iTunes!

Intro: 00:00 – 2:04

Conversation with Charlotte Cook: 2:36 – 26:28

Our Favorite Blank Films and Weekly Doc Recommendations: 27:01 – 45:52

 

Links!

Les Blank retrospective at Hot Docs

Doc Criticism panel at Hot Docs, featuring Christopher

J. Hoberman’s obituary of Blank at Art Info

Daniel on Blank’s signature sense of joy at Film.com

Christopher on five wonderful films by Blank at Documentary Channel

 

Watch the Docs:

Buy Les Blank’s films on his website

Burden of Dreams on Hulu

Only the Young on Amazon Instant

Her Master’s Voice on Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Instant

Tchoupitoulas on Amazon Instant

 

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Podcasts

Podcast #2 – ‘Free Angela and All Political Prisoners’ and Narrative Remakes of Documentaries

No Comments 12 April 2013

This week we review Shola Lynch‘s new film, Free Angela and All Political Prisoners, and its “historical vérité” approach to biographical documentary. Then, inspired by Lynch’s own thoughts about making the story of Angela Davis into a biopic, we discuss fiction adaptations of documentaries. Do they help documentaries find an audience, or are they too often simply blander, inaccurate versions of the original? Finally, we take a moment to remember Roger Ebert’s championing of documentary film over the years, and recommend some of his favorites and ours.

For more on documentaries, check Chris’s Documentary Channel Blog and follow us on Twitter at @DSWalber and @TheFilmCynic

To download the podcast, right click here and choose “Save Link As…

Download MP3 File

Subscribe on iTunes!

Intro: 00:00 – 1:39

Free Angela and All Political Prisoners: 1:40 – 24:03

Remaking Documentaries as Fiction Films: 24:05 – 45:43

Rogert Ebert and Weekly Doc Recommendations: 46:01 – 58:20

 

Links!

Follow Free Angela and All Political Prisoners on Facebook for more info about screenings

Max Roach performing Triptych with Abbey Lincoln on YouTube

Read Chris’s interview with director Shola Lynch here

Roger Ebert’s blog post on Happy People: A Year in the Taiga

 

Watch the Docs:

Hoop Dreams on NetflixHulu and Amazon Instant

Gates of Heaven on Hulu

Happy People: A Year in the Taiga DVD on Netflix

Where to find Eugene Jarecki’s The House I Live In

The Black Power Mixtape 1967-1975 on Netflix

Kon-Tiki on Amazon Instant Prime and Hulu

Party Monster: The Shockumentary on iTunes

 

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Podcasts

Podcast #1 – ‘Room 237’ and Humor in Documentary

No Comments 01 April 2013

In this inaugural podcast, Daniel and Christopher discuss Room 237.

Room 237 is a subjective documentary that explores the numerous theories about the hidden meanings within Stanley Kubrick’s film The Shining (1980). The film may be over 30 years old but it continues to inspire debate, speculation, and mystery. Five very different points of view are illuminated through voice over, film clips, animation and dramatic reenactments. Together they’ll draw the audience into a new maze, one with endless detours and dead ends, many ways in, but no way out.

To download the podcast, right click here and choose “Save Link As…

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Documentary films recommended this week:

F For Fake – Watch on Hulu Plus or rent digitally from Amazon Instant Video

Documentarian – Watch the trailer on YouTube

Paris is Burning – Watch on Netflix Watch Instantly

The Pervert’s Guide to Cinema – Rent and download from thepervertsguide.com

Room 237 – Rent digitally from iTunes or Amazon Instant Video

Sherman’s March – Watch on Netflix Watch Instantly

War Don Don – Rent digitally from New Day Digital

 

Links:

What is the Funniest Documentary of All Time? (Documentary Channel)

When Is It Okay to Laugh at a Real Person? (Movies.com)

Paris Has Burned (New York Times)


About

“The Realness” is a weekly podcast about documentary film. Hosts Daniel Walber and Christopher Campbell discuss new and classic titles, genres, methods, ethics and other important topics regarding non-fiction cinema. Sometimes they’re joined by filmmakers and other figures from the documentary community.

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