Filmmaker Jonathan Caouette's documentary on growing up with his schizophrenic mother -- a mixture of snapshots, Super-8, answering machine messages, video diaries, early short films, and more -- culled from 19 years of his life.
Ross McElwee sets out to make a documentary about the lingering effects of General Sherman's march of destruction through the South during the Civil War, but is continually sidetracked by ... See full summary »
Ross McElwee Jr.
Alex and Erica Boyer's marriage is in a crisis: job and wife bore Alex. When Erica has an accident that has her staying in a wheel chair for some time, it changes their life: Alex meets ... See full summary »
What do an elderly topiary gardener, a retired lion tamer, a man fascinated by mole rats, and a cutting-edge robotics designer have in common? Both nothing and everything in this ... See full summary »
A documentary on the effect of fishing the Nile perch in Tanzania's Lake Victoria. The predatory fish, which has wiped out the native species, is sold in European supermarkets, while starving Tanzanian families have to make do with the leftovers.
Elizabeth 'Eliza' Maganga Nsese,
Raphael Tukiko Wagara,
Six-part documentary on the city of Muncie, Indiana - nicknamed "Middletown" after a study in the 1920s deemed it representative of middle America. The series finds that amid the great ... See full summary »
I can't do much but repeat what the other two reviews have said. This is an amazing, thought-provoking piece of cinema verite. From the team who brought us the incredible "Demon Lover Diaries" comes this biting insight into the life of teens in middle America.
I first saw this my freshman year in college. I loved its naturalistic style, and it reminded me of my own growing up in Midwestern USA.
I saw it again in another class a couple of years later, and with a little bit of perspective, I enjoyed it even more for the filmmakers' incredible ability to capture their subjects without any influence or changing the subjects' actions.
As others have mentioned, it was commissioned by PBS as a part of a series on Muncie, Indiana, which had been named the "population center" of the United States at the time, and therefore truly "Middle America." Other documentary filmmakers made pieces for this series that were more conventional looks at the town and its history. One thing that I do think other reviewers have wrong is saying that PBS did not air this. At both screenings I attended, it was stated that it did air on PBS once, but was pulled from further re-broadcasts of the "Middle America"/"Muncie" series.
Any bootlegs you can find (and they are rare, even by bootleg standards) come from this initial PBS broadcast, more than likely. I consider myself extremely lucky to have seen this on the big screen (at USC) not once, but twice, and it has left an indelible mark on my memory. If you get ANY chance to see it, buy it, borrow it, etc., do not miss the opportunity.
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