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Restrepo (2010) More at IMDbPro »


2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009

6 items from 2017


2018 Oscar Predictions: Best Documentary Feature

5 July 2017 11:02 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

Getting out early can be an advantage in the documentary race, which is often front loaded at January’s Sundance Film Festival. While a raft of movies made their mark, the question is which ones can sustain support through the end of the year.

Among that festival’s breakouts were three Syria documentaries. Daring and timely “City of Ghosts” (July 14, A & E/Amazon Studios), which is Matthew Heineman’s follow-up to his Oscar-nominated border drug war thriller “Cartel Land,” will get a major push. Any footage from Syria came from the fearless Raqqa journalists he tracked through Turkey and Germany, where they discover that they are not necessarily safe — anywhere.

It remains to be seen if there will be room for more than one Syrian documentary. HBO Documentary Films is forgoing Emmy consideration for “Winter on Fire” nominee Evgeny Afineevsky’s harrowing “Cries From Syria” (March 10, HBO), planning an Oscar push this fall. »

- Anne Thompson

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'Hell on Earth: The Fall of Syria and the Rise of Isis': Film Review

19 May 2017 12:48 PM, PDT | The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News | See recent The Hollywood Reporter - Movie News news »

Having made a trilogy of docs viewing the war in Afghanistan through deliberately tight frames (the first of which, Restrepo, earned an Oscar nomination), Sebastian Junger and Nick Quested grapple with a sprawling Middle East topic in Hell on Earth: The Fall of Syria and the Rise of Isis. A useful primer for those who haven't paid enough attention and a synthesis for those who've been overwhelmed by years of upsetting news reports, the film explains cause-and-effect relationships that, while hardly unexplored, merit continued attention. Though premiering in limited theatrical release this week, it will reach most of its audience »

- John DeFore

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How Hot Docs, North America’s Smartest Festival, Could Anoint an Oscar Winner

9 May 2017 8:15 AM, PDT | Thompson on Hollywood | See recent Thompson on Hollywood news »

In a world where TV networks fight for the opportunity to showcase the best nonfiction content that will keep viewers on their couches, the Toronto-based Hot Docs Canadian International Film Festival (April 27 – May 7) is a very, very good place to be.

What began 24 years ago as a modest showcase for Canadian documentaries is now a sprawling international program that screens 230 titles from 58 countries. The festival still favors homegrown product, but also amplifies movies from Sundance (“Chasing Coral,” “Long Strange Trip,” “City of Ghosts”) and Tribeca (“The Departure,” “A River Below”), as well as some international (Joe Berlinger’s “Intent to Destroy”) and world premieres (“A Moon of Nickel and Ice”).

“Hot Docs creates an environment where you can meet with the best in the documentary world,” said director Cullen Hoback, who brought his sharp pollution whodunit “What Lies Upstream” first to Slamdance, then to Hot Docs (Preferred Content is seeking »

- Anne Thompson

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How Hot Docs, North America’s Smartest Festival, Could Anoint an Oscar Winner

9 May 2017 8:15 AM, PDT | Indiewire | See recent Indiewire news »

In a world where TV networks fight for the opportunity to showcase the best nonfiction content that will keep viewers on their couches, the Toronto-based Hot Docs Canadian International Film Festival (April 27 – May 7) is a very, very good place to be.

What began 24 years ago as a modest showcase for Canadian documentaries is now a sprawling international program that screens 230 titles from 58 countries. The festival still favors homegrown product, but also amplifies movies from Sundance (“Chasing Coral,” “Long Strange Trip,” “City of Ghosts”) and Tribeca (“The Departure,” “A River Below”), as well as some international (Joe Berlinger’s “Intent to Destroy”) and world premieres (“A Moon of Nickel and Ice”).

“Hot Docs creates an environment where you can meet with the best in the documentary world,” said director Cullen Hoback, who brought his sharp pollution whodunit “What Lies Upstream” first to Slamdance, then to Hot Docs (Preferred Content is seeking »

- Anne Thompson

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Tribeca Film Review: ‘Hell on Earth: The Fall of Syria and the Rise of Isis’

30 April 2017 6:05 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

The radical terror army known as Isis operates far less in the shadows than the underground rebels of Al-Qaeda. Yet for most Westerners, the image of the Islamic State remains that of an abstract and rather murky cult of hooligan warriors. “Hell on Earth: The Fall of Syria and the Rise of Isis,” a powerful and important documentary directed by Sebastian Junger and Nick Quested, is a movie of multiple achievements, and one of them is that it lets you look right into the face of this hydra-headed paramilitary beast. We see footage of fighters from the Free Syrian Army, many of whose members were later assimilated into Isis, entering Aleppo, a city ravaged by civil war, and they have a goon-squad fearsomeness that announces itself as beyond the law. At the risk of sounding like I’m trivializing real-world atrocity, it’s very much like that moment in “The Road Warrior »

- Owen Gleiberman

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Saboteur Media launches production, sales, finance venture

25 April 2017 9:59 PM, PDT | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

Exclusive: Sales and distribution veteran Mark Lindsay to introduce five new titles to Cannes buyers.

New York-based Saboteur Media has launched a production and finance operation with a broader sales remit and hired former Miramax International senior executive Mark Lindsay as president of distribution.

The moves comes as executive director Nick Quested expands the suite of services beyond those of documentary distributor and sales company initially launched under the auspices of Goldcrest Films.

Saboteur now operates as a stand-alone entity that produces, finances and sells narrative and documentary features, with particular emphasis on empowering the New York creative community and an opportunistic eye towards television.

The company has the ability to finance tax credits and invest equity in select projects, which will not rely on pre-sales in order to get greenlight. It serves as co-producer on all five titles headed for Cannes.

Lindsay, whose executive roles have included head of sales and distribution at Kimmel International, Arclight »

- jeremykay67@gmail.com (Jeremy Kay)

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2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009

6 items from 2017


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