5 items from 2016
Documentary festival announces winners.
The award, supported by Screen International and Broadcast, comes with a cash prize of £2,000 ($2,800).
The jury described the film as “a work that´s both expansive and intimate, formally ambitious and morally humble”.
“Though this filmmaker has travelled the world to tell others stories, her real »
- email@example.com (Michael Rosser)
Adapted from a factual book by the war correspondent Kim Barker, Whiskey Tango Foxtrot is not the first film to deal with the addictive qualities of combat. The Hurt Locker cast a cool eye over the adrenaline hit that hooks bomb-disposal experts; more recently the documentaries Which Way Is the Front Line from Here? The Life and Time of Tim Hetherington and Only the Dead explored the thrill that sends reporters after stories that could claim their lives. But this is one of the first to look at the lure of the frontline from a female perspective.
Tina Fey is well cast as Barker, an inexperienced reporter who finds herself flung into the “Kabubble”: the hard-living, hothouse community of war correspondents stationed in Afghanistan during the ongoing war. Spiked with gallows humour, »
- Wendy Ide
It looks like Jake Gyllenhaal is setting his sights on producing a new documentary. It was just revealed that the actor and producer is teaming with Bold Films for his first documentary feature, which will be based on photojournalist Chris Hondros.
“We’re actually doing our first documentary now and it’s through Jake Gyllenhaal,” Bold Films’ CEO Gary Michael Walters told Simon Thompson at Forbes. “He asked us to do it and he’s very passionate about this story.”
“We are financing our first documentary for Nine Stories, Jake’s production company,” Walters added. “It’s a great story about a photojournalist named Chris Hondros. His best friend was doing a documentary about him and during the course of taping of the documentary Chris got killed in Libya during the rebel wars. That will be our first documentary. And you got that story first, it’s an exclusive.”
- Paul Heath
Something Better Better Come: Afghan Kids Reign Supreme
In the opening sequence of The Land of the Enlightened following a radio broadcast from President Obama that announces that American troops would soon be pulling out of Afghanistan, first time filmmaker Pieter-Jan De Pue‘s alluring vérité depiction of Afghanistan’s bleak future, makes no bones about the country’s seemingly cursed existence, plotting out the cycle of Afghan misfortune via voiceover of holy legend and images mythical landscapes. “I made a mistake,” he (god) said. “I don’t have any land left for you.” With stunning 16mm cinematography, an empathetic eye, and a great deal of courage, De Pue digs into this lawless desert world, following a renegade band of armed children as they raid weary travelers and trade the opium and lapis lazuli they take as bounty, forging in the end a futureless portrait in which morals are discarded in the name of survival. »
- Jordan M. Smith
The Academy doc branch selected their shortlist of 15 semifinalists in December. No one, least of all documentary filmmaker Matthew Heineman, who is not a frontline war reporter, expected "Cartel Land" (July 13, The Orchard) to be among the titles. But, with nominations voting set to close Friday, January 8, it is—after the border drug wars movie broke at Sundance, where it won directing and cinematography prizes, nabbed support from director Kathryn Bigelow, scored the Tim Hetherington Award at Sheffield, and landed on the coveted Doc NYC shortlist as well. Now, "Cartel Land" will be available to its widest audience yet: it airs tonight at 10pm on A&E. What's the big deal? Well, Heineman will receive the International Documentary Association's "Courage Under Fire Award," which honors "conspicuous bravery in the pursuit of truth." Last year's Oscar winner Laura Poitras ("Citizenfour") also won this »
- Anne Thompson
5 items from 2016
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