Voices of the gods. Al Santana (2007).
This documentary captures the rich legacy of ancient African religions practiced today in the United States. It provides rare insights into the practices and beliefs of the Akan and Yoruba religions and illustrates how mass media has been used to denigrate these belief systems. Includes an intimate and respectful study of an Egungun ancestral communion ceremony and daily life in the Yoruba village of Oyotunji in Sheldon, South Carolina, the only traditional African village of its kind in the U.S. today.
Women of vision 18 histories in feminist film and video. Alexandra Juhasz (2005).
Profiles a variety of women active in independent-feminist film and video, including production, distribution and education, whose work expresses a variety of political and esthetic viewpoints. The three part video begins by profiling 6 women whose careers began in the Fifties and Sixties, then six women whose work coincided with the emergence of the women's movement in the Seventies and six women whose careers began in the Eighties and Nineties.
Human Sacrifice. André Singer and Tom Sheahan (2013).
The documentary gives insight into the ancient rituals and religious practices involved in human sacrifice. The Forbidden Rites trilogy explores cannibalism, head hunting and human sacrifice. This series includes first-hand accounts, expert interviews, and rarely seen footage. It reveals the legends behind man-eating tribes, headhunters in jungles of Ecuador and sheds light on the link between human sacrifice and salvation. The series looks at rituals considered important and acceptable to one society but regarded, particularly in the West, as unacceptable and even abhorrent. The aim is to look at the differences and get explanations from practitioners in other societies as to why such rituals worked for them.
Yurumein = Homeland. Andrea Leland (2014).
"The Black Caribs are a little known ethnic group. Yurumein (Homeland) is a 50-minute documentary that recounts the painful past of these Carib people - their near extermination at the hands of the British, the decimation of their culture on the island, and the exile of survivors to Central America over 200 years ago. ... Yurumein follows members of the Garifuna Diaspora as they attempt to rekindle a disappeared culture and revitalize its language, dance and music. The film reveals signs of resilience as local Caribs come together to celebrate and honor their Garifuna past, and in doing so, begin the journey of healing, rebuilding, and preserving the homeland. Yurumein is a post-colonial story of re-identification and cultural retrieval among the indigenous Caribs/Garifuna in the Caribbean" --Container.
Mr. Coperthwaite: A life in the Maine woods. Anna Grimshaw (2014).
"In 1960, Bill Coperthwaite bought 300 acres of wilderness in Machiasport, Maine. Influenced by the poetry of Emily Dickinson and by the back to the land movement of Scott and Helen Nearing, Bill Coperthwaite is committed to what he calls a handmade life. For the last fifty years, Bill Coperthwaite has lived and worked in the forest. He is a builder of yurts, and a maker of spoons, bowls and chairs. A meditation on time and process, this film explores an overlooked aspect of American culture and the critical place of nature within it."--Anonymous, on IMDb website.
A spell to ward off the darkness. Ben Rivers (2015).
Viewers follow an unnamed character through three seemingly disparate moments in his life: in the midst of a fifteen-person collective on a small Estonian island in isolation in the majestic wilderness of Northern Finland and during a concert as the singer and guitarist of a black metal band in Norway.
Hi-fi rise sonic cities from another timeline. Ben Rivers (2001).
Features 14 moving image works, 8 by Semiconductor themselves and 6 from guests artists. Retropolis takes viewers through an imaginary London where all they see and hear is the electricity passing through millions of flickering light bulbs. Linear links the sub-atomic world of the String Theory to urban landscapes through the vibrations of sound.
Two years at sea. Ben Rivers (2013).
Using 16mm cameras, artist Ben Rivers documents the solitary existence of Jake, a man who lives in isolation in the middle of a remote forest. The film follows his unconventional life, capturing moments of profound beauty. Jake is seen in all seasons, surviving frugally, passing the time with strange projects, living the radical dream he had as a younger man, a dream he spent two years working at sea to realize.
We are all related here. Brian McDermott (2015).
"The story of the Yup'ik people of Newtok, Alaska, who are being forced to relocate their village due to the erosion and flooding they are experiencing as a result of global warming. We meet some of the people who are being called America's first 'climate refugees, ' and learn about the history and culture of the Yup'ik people of Newtok, who are being forced to relocate their village due to the erosion and flooding they are experiencing as a result of global warming."--Film's website.
Dervishes of Kurdistan. Brian Moser (2013).
The village of Baiveh, in Iran's rugged mountain frontier with Iraq, is home to a group of Kurds who belong to the Quadiri dervishes, a mystical cult of Islam. This program examines the role that religion plays in their daily lives - through ceremonies like the Zikr, in which the dervishes work themselves into an ecstatic trance, able then to endure electric shocks and pass skewers through their flesh without apparently hurting themselves. The dervish tribesmen claim fantastic powers for their leader, the 27-year old Sheikh Hossein - for him, they will skewer their faces, slash their bodies, lick white-hot spoons, and eat glass. Since religious power goes hand in hand with political power in traditional Kurdish society, the sheikh is both spiritual and temporal leader. And as Hossein claims a personal link with God, his religious authority is paramount - only by his authority can a dervish aspire to communion with God.
Unnatural causes is inequality making us sick?. California News Reel (2008).
A four-hour documentary series arguing that "health and longevity are correlated with socioeconomic status, people of color face an additional health burden, and our health and well-being are tied to policies that promote economic and social justice. Each of the half-hour program segments, set in different racial/ethnic communities, provides a deeper exploration of the ways in which social conditions affect population health and how some communities are extending their lives be improving them" -- Container insert.
Aral fieldworks. Carlos Casas (2011).
Captured on location in 2004 and 2005 in the Aral Sea watershed in Karakalpakstan, Uzbekistan. These films are a part of an ongoing experimental series with ambiental video and radio frequencies, a sort of landscape video notes. The filmmaker tries to capture the atmospheric qualities of a landscape through visual and audio field recordings captured on location.
Aral: Fishing in an invisible sea. Carlos Casas (2006).
A documentary film about the three remaining generations of fishermen of the Aral Sea, who live in Moynak, Karakalpakistan. The film shows their everyday struggle to survive in one of the scarcest places on the planet. The Aral Sea waters shrunk by 80% when the Soviet authorities allowed over-irrigation in the first half of the 20th century, leaving behind a polluted desert.
Hunters since the beginning of time. Carlos Casas (2008).
Along the coast of the Bering Sea a community of whale hunters are struggling to survive and to keep alive a millenary tradition. This film follows a year in their life.
Patagonian fieldworks. Carlos Casas (2011).
Captured on location in 2002, 2005 and 2010 in Patagonia, Argentina. These films are a part of an ongoing experimental series with ambiental video and radio frequencies, a sort of landscape video notes. The filmmaker tries to capture the atmospheric qualities of a landscape through visual and audio field recordings captured on location.
Rocinha. Carlos Casas (2005).
Rocinha is the most notorious and populated favela in Rio de Janeiro. It occupies one of the most privileged and expensive areas of the city, but many of its residents live an alternative vision in their everyday fight against the stereotypes of poverty, drugs and violence. Features interviews with the residents.
Siberian fieldworks. Carlos Casas (2011).
Captured on location during 2006-2007 in Chukotka, Siberia, Russian Federation. This film is a part of an ongoing experimental series with ambiental video and radio frequencies, a sort of landscape video notes. The filmmaker tries to capture the atmospheric qualities of a landscape through visual and audio field recordings captured on location.
Solitude at the end of the world. Carlos Casas (2007).
In Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, one of the least populated regions of the world, a few men live in total solitude, spending months and months alone. This documentary tells the story of three of these men. Isolated from the world for different reasons, they survive in a suspended time of their own.
No home movie. Chantal Akerman (2015).
"Chantal Akerman's final film is a portrait of her relationship with her mother Natalia, a Holocaust survivor and familiar presence in many of her daughter's films."--Container.
Un jour Pina a demandé ... Chantal Akerman (2013).
Chantal Akerman's look at the work of choreographer Pina Bausch and her Wuppertal, Germany-based dance company.
De l'autre côté. Chantal Akerman (2016).
Using technology developed for the military, the flow of illegal immigration into San Diego has been stemmed. But for the desperate, there are still the dangerous deserts of Arizona, where Chantal Akerman shifts her focus.
D'est. Chantal Akerman (2016).
Filmmaker Akerman makes a voyage from East Germany, across Poland and the Baltics, to Moscow, shortly after the collapse of the Soviet Bloc.
Down there. Chantal Akerman (2016).
According to director Chantal Akerman, she never planned to make a film in Israel. She was convinced that neutrality does not exist and that her subjectivity would get in her way. She was sure she would only be able to reflect on 'the Israel question' while she was outside the country. It was only when she taught at the University of Tel Aviv, picked up a camera and "found" suitable images that she decided to make a film. Akerman spends a brief period on her own in an apartment by the sea in Tel Aviv. She takes the chamber play to its ultimate form: it is almost entirely chamber. She films from the apartment and in her narration she talks about her family, her Jewish identity and her childhood. She wonders whether normal everyday life is possible in this place and whether filming is a realistic option. Akerman does not film here with any intentions defined in advance. She wants to be as open and blank as possible to ensure that things take their own course.
Sud. Chantal Akerman (2016).
Originally planned as a meditation on the American South, the focus of the film was dramatically altered following the brutal, racially-motivated murder of James Byrd Jr., a black man, in Jasper, Texas that took place during its development. Filmmaker Chantal Akerman situates this hate crime within the context of the surrounding community, environment and landscape, documenting the townspeople's reaction to the hate crime through interviews with residents -- black and white.
Chantal Ackerman, de cá = Chantal Akerman, from here. Chantal Akerman (2016).
A single-shot conversation with Belgian filmmaker Chantal Akerman about her films and her directorial philosophy.
Asante market women. Claudia Milne, Charlotte Boaitey (2012).
Examines the matrilineal and polygamous Asante society of Ghana through interviews with women, who exercise complete authority in the wholesale produce market, and with their husbands and children. The interviewees reveal the advantages and tribulations of their relationships, the practical problems they confront, and the various solutions they embrace.
The couple in the cage a Guatinaui odyssey. Coco Fusco and Paula Heredia (2006).
Performance artists Guillermo Gómez-Peña and Coco Fusco travel and appear before the public in four different countries as two "Guatinaui Indians", members of a fictional "newly discovered" tribe who had agreed to be displayed at malls and museums around the world, after the manner of human exhibition in the 19th and early 20th centuries. These performances are Intercut with archival footage of humans displayed in cages as freaks and curiosities. Conceived as a "satirical comment on the past", the performances evoke various responses, including huge numbers of people who are convinced they are real and do not find the idea of "natives" locked in a cage objectionable.
Daughter of suicide. Dempsey Rice (2010).
Filmmaker Dempsey Rice tells the intimate story of her mother's life and eventual suicide and how she tries to rationalize an irrational act and to find a way to forgive her mother.
Trobriand cricket: An ingenious response to colonialism. Gary Kildea, Jerry Leach (2004).
"Shows how the Trobrianders have taken the very controlled game of British cricket, first introduced to them some 70 years earlier by Methodist missionaries, and changed it into an outlet for mock warfare and intervillage competition, political reputation-building among leaders, eroticized dancing and chanting, and wild entertainment. The game is a major symbolic statement of the Trobrianders' feelings and experiences under British colonialism."--Distributor website.
Sacro GRA. Gianfranco Rosi (2014).
"The ring road around Rome, the Grande Raccordo Anulare is the most extensive urban highway in Italy and the locale for Gianfranco Rosi̕s intriguing concept of a documentary, Sacro GRA. Punning on the Sacro Graal, or Holy Grail, this follow-up to Rosi̕s American-set Below Sea Level takes a neutral look at intriguingly disparate lives near the highway̕s edge, yet neglects to demonstrate why they should all be in one film."--http://variety.com.
The Nuer. Hilary Harris and Robert Gardner (2009).
Presents the most important relationships and events in the lives of the Nuer, Nilotic people in Sudan and on the Ethiopian border. Demonstrates the vital significance of cattle and their central importance in all Nuer thought and behavior.
Sweet sugar rage. Honor Ford-Smith and Harclyde Walcott (2008).
The Sistren Theatre Collective is an independent popular theatre company which has developed since 1977 from the initiative of working-class women in Jamaica. Using drama workshops and original plays the group works at advancing awareness on questions affecting women, particularly Caribbean women. In this film the group concerns itself with women sugar cane workers in and around "New Sugar Town," Clarendon, Jamaica. After interviewing the women in the fields, the group analyses its findings on conditions in the sugar belt and the scenario for a play emerges. Their performances speak directly to the daily experiences of women -- the least empowered workers, who labor long hours for low wages with no benefits or rights to organize for better conditions. Using role-play and interviews with female cane workers, the collective develops dramatizations which analyze social issues and pinpoint their concerns.
Waiting for John. Jessica Sherry (2015).
When the American military landed on Tanna, a remote island in the South Pacific during World War II, the islanders were amazed by America's fantastic cargo - planes, trucks, refrigerators, canned food. They thought such goods could only come from the Gods. Led by the mysterious prophet John, a religion was born, the John Frum Movement, also known as a Cargo Cult. The John Frum Movement still exists in one village in the islands of Vanuatu. The leaders still go to speak with the spirit of John in sacred caves and believers sing songs about him every Friday night. While the US may have forgotten Tanna Island, the American flag flies high over the village of Lamakara and young men march in formation, imitating US soldiers. Lamakara is the last stronghold of the John Frum Movement, but today it is plagued by outside pressures and internal conflict. Waiting for John explores this extraordinary religion from the perspective of the last village of believers, as they struggle to preserve their way of life.
Himalayan herders. John and Naomi Bishop (2007).
An intimate portrait of a temple-village in the Yolmo valley of Central Nepal where Tibetan Buddhists consult shamans, married life begins by kidnapping the bride, and the nearest road is two days walk away. Provides rich material for examining gender, culture change, religion, pastoralism, South Asia, and cultural ecology and economics of mountain populations.
A Tibetan new year. Jon Jerstad (2010).
Documents the Tibetan New Year celebrations (Losar) carried out by the monks of the only Bonpo community outside Tibet, located in the foothills of the Himalayas. Included are the preparations and enactment of the annual ceremony.
A celebration of life: Dances of the African-Guyanese. Kean Gibson (2006).
An analysis of the African cultural roots and the social and spiritual meaning of Guyanese dance.
Trokosi (wife of the gods). Kofi Boateng (2008).
Documents a system of providing young girls as servants/slaves to priests among the Ewe people of southeastern Ghana. These "inmates" (or wives of Gods) must serve for an indefinite time as workers and wives to atone for family crimes that can date back to the 17th century
The raising of America: Early childhood and the future of our nation. Larry Adelman et al. (2015).
"The first documentary series to explore how a strong start for all our kids can lead to a healthier, more prosperous and more equitable America."--Container.
Taking pictures. Les McLaren and Annie Stiven (2007).
Australian documentary filmmakers explore the issues and pitfalls of filming across cultural boundaries through interviews and samples of their films of Papua New Guinea including 'Trobriand Cricket', 'First Contact', 'The Shark Callers of Kontu', 'Joe Leahy's Neighbours', 'Black Harvest', 'Cannibal Tours', 'Man Without Pigs', and others. It also covers the work of indigenous Papua New Guinea filmmakers and their own experience making sense of film and culture.
Ren min gong yuan = People's Park. Libbie Cohn and JP Sniadecki (2012).
A single-shot documentary that immerses viewers in an unbroken journey through a famous urban park in Chengdu, Sichuan Province. The film explores the dozens of moods, rhythms and pockets of performance coexisting in tight proximity within the park's prismatic social space, capturing waltzing couples, mighty sycamores, karaoke singers, and buzzing cicadas. A sensory meditation on cinematic time and space, People's Park offers a gaze at public interaction, leisure and self-expression in China.
Pig tusks and paper money. Lillian Gibbs Production (2015).
There are two currencies in Papua New Guinea. The modern cash economy and traditional economies using shell money, banana leaf bundles and pig tusks. People need both, but there exists no legitimate system of exchange between the two. Henry Tokabak dreams of creating a bank where people can exchange their shell money for cash. He feels that the global economy takes a heavy toll on indigenous people. "Shell money gets exchanged within the community, but paper money just goes away." In the traditional economy, indigenous people live quite well without money. They build their houses, farm their land and barter for any extra items. They need cash only for bus fares, school fees and taxes. However, by standards set by the global economy they are cash poor. Henry's dream is frustrated by the regulation of the banking business. Even the word "bank" cannot be used to describe his operation. Further hindering his crusade is his pending court case for misappropriating public funds to establish an informal bank. Yet Henry has the support of many in his community and beyond. Sarah, a successful storekeeper in the Trobriand Islands, deals with both currencies and agrees there is a need for such an institution. A provocative film for both anthropology and economics classes.
Friends in high places. Lindsey Merrison (2007).
Reveals the central role of nats and spirit mediums in alleviating the day to day burdens of modern Burmese life. Shows the special niche in Burmese society for the gay men who serve as the primary conduits for the spirits. Considered neither male nor female, they are regarded with a curious mix of disdain and reverence.
Kypseli women and men apart: A divided reality. Paul Aratow (2006).
A film essay on the peasant society of Kypseli, a small isolated Greek village on the island of Thera. Depicts how the people of Kypseli divide time, space, material possessions, and activities according to an underlying pattern based on the separation of the sexes, and shows how this division determines the village social structure.
Single stream. Pawel Wojtasik, Toby Lee and Ernst Karel (2014).
"A singular appreciation of waste processing - graceful, mesmeric, almost balletic - Single Stream plunges viewers into the steady flow of a materials recycling facility where hundreds of tons of refuse are sorted each day. Yet another revelatory documentary from Harvard's Sensory Ethnography Lab Single Stream locates, the beauty, efficiency and futurism of an industry built on our culture of excess"--Container.
First peoples. PBS (2015).
200,000 years ago we took our first steps in Africa. Today there are seven billion of us living across the planet. How did our ancestors spread from continent to continent? This is a global detective story, featuring the latest archaeological discoveries and genetic research. On each continent, we track down the earliest members of our species, Homo sapiens. Who were these First Peoples? What drove them to the ends of the earth?
The hand that feeds. Rachel Lears (2016).
At a popular bakery café, residents of New York's Upper East Side get bagels and coffee served with a smile 24 hours a day. But behind the scenes, undocumented immigrant workers face sub-legal wages, dangerous machinery, and abusive managers who will fire them for calling in sick. Mild-mannered sandwich maker Mahoma López has never been interested in politics, but in January 2012, he convinces a small group of his co-workers to fight back. Risking deportation and the loss of their livelihood, the workers team up with a diverse crew of innovative young organizers and take the unusual step of forming their own independent union, launching themselves on a journey that will test the limits of their resolve. In one roller-coaster year, they must overcome a shocking betrayal and a two-month lockout. Lawyers will battle in back rooms, Occupy Wall Street protesters will take over the restaurant, and a picket line will divide the neighborhood. If they can win a contract, it will set a historic precedent for low-wage workers across the country. But whatever happens, Mahoma and his coworkers will never be exploited again.
Solo questo mare = Only the sea is missing. Rossella Schillaci (2014).
Looks at the lives of Somali refugees who live in an abandoned and unheated clinic in Lampedusa, Italy.
Il limite. Rossella Schillaci (2014).
The film depicts the daily struggle of fishermen to earn a living in a harsh physical environment that brings out the social and economic tensions of modern society. Manning the Priamo are Cola, the captain, Ahmed, the Tunisian first mate, two Italian engineers, and two Tunisian seamen. At sea for three weeks at a time, they fish off the coasts of Libya and Tunisia, sometimes outside the fishing limits and risking interception by the authorities. An intimate account of remoteness: after a few days on shore, the men leave their homes and families for a month. Night and day the nets are cast every four hours. The work is demanding and poorly paid. The quarters are cramped and uncomfortable. Conflicts and prejudices surface amidst the roar of the engines and the sea. Beyond the horizon lies Africa, where immigrants embark for Europe, leaving their homes and families behind in the hope of finding a better life.
Food chains. Sanjay Rawal (2014).
Coalition of Immokalee Workers or CIW, a group of Florida farmworkers, battle to defeat the $4 trillion global supermarket industry through their ingenious Fair Food program, which partners with growers and retailers to improve working conditions for farm laborers in the United States.
Witchcraft among the Azande. Singer, André Ryle John (2013).
There was a time when the Azande kings ruled from the tropical rain forests of the Congo to the pastures of southern Sudan. In 1980s Sudan, they live a life of obscurity, dominated by oracles and spells-though practicing Christians, they still believe in the power of magic. To an Azande, nothing happens by chance. A wife's illness, the failure of the hunt, or a spoiled crop are all believed to be the work of witches-a witch may not even be conscious of his or her powers, like the woman accused of causing her co-wife sickness merely through unfriendly thoughts. A couple stands accused of adultery both deny the charge and agree to the chief's suggestion they be tried by Benge, a ritual poison fed to a chicken-whether the chicken lives or dies determines their guilt. When the Benge trial shows that adultery was committed, the pair confesses.
Life story of an African inyanga. Sith Yela (2006).
Interview and dramatization of the life of Samuel B. Jamile, a South African inyanga (herbalist/medicine man). Examines the inyanga's medical, psychological, social, and moral role in tribal life. Also discusses the inyanga's role in modern society.
Savage memory. Sly Productions (2012).
In 1915, Bronislaw Malinowski set out to document the 'exotic' practices of a small group of islanders off the coast of Papua New Guinea. With extensive data on sex, magic and spirits of the dead, his work set the stage for anthropologists for decades to come and brought him fame as one of the founding fathers of anthropology. Four generations and almost one hundred years later, his great grandson travels to the Trobriand Islands in Papua New Guinea and looks at the very controversial legacy Malinowski left behind - within the field of anthropology, within his own family and among the descendants of the people he studied. The film follows a layered landscape of narrative threads: the story of Malinowski's last surviving daughter and her ambivalence towards her father's painful legacy the Trobriand Islanders surprising personal relationship to Malinwoski as they witness the impact of westernization on their changing customs and the story of Malinowski himself- the triumphant, self-made mythical anthropologist.
The empathy gap: Masculinity and the courage to change. Thomas Keith (2015).
Filmmaker Thomas Keith examines how the sexist and misogynistic messages that circulate in American culture short-circuit men's ability to empathize with women, respect them as equals, and take feminism seriously. Along the way, The Empathy Gap draws fascinating parallels between sexism and racism, and shows how men who break with regressive gender norms live happier and healthier lives.
Pratica e maestria. Various (including Rossella Schillaci) (2015).
Pratica e maestria: a documentary about the construction, performance techniques, and performers of the zampogna, a bagpipe-like wind instrument. Features two brothers Antonio and Forastiero, who live and work in the remote mountains of southern Italy in Calabria.
Feng ai = 'Til madness do us part. Wang Bing (2016).
In an isolated psychiatric institution in Yunnan Province, China, live fifty men who spend their days locked on one floor, with little contact with the outside world, even with the medical team, who only arrive to administer drugs. Each has been committed for a different reason: they have mental problems, killed people, or have upset local officials. But once inside, they share the same empty life, walking along the same iron wire-fenced courtyard, looking for comfort and human warmth.
In her own time. Barbara Meyerhoff (2007).
Focuses on cultural anthropologist Barbara Myerhoff's study of the community of Hasidic Jews in Los Angeles's Fairfax neighborhood. Tells also how, after exhausting medical treatment for cancer, she found strength among the traditions, faith, and caring of these Orthodox Jews.
Bronislaw Malinowski: Off the Verandah. Bronislaw Malinowski (2004).
Examines the work of Bronislaw Malinowski, who studied the people of the Trobriands, a group of Pacific Islands, altering the idea that native peoples were primitive savages.
Franz Boas: The Shackles of Tradition. Bruce Dakowski (2013).
Profile of the German physicist who was responsible for shaping the course of American anthropology, beginning with his investigations of the relations between Eskimo migrations and the physical geography of their region.
Coming of age. Bruce Dakowski (2004).
Chronicles the life and career of Margaret Mead, one of the most controversial anthropologists and fieldworkers of her day. Includes original footage from American Samoa, New Guinea and Bali.
Sir Edward Evans-Pritchard: Strange Beliefs. Bruce Dakowski (1990).
Sir Edward Evans-Pritchard was the first trained anthropologist to do work in Africa, where he lived among the Azande and studied their belief in witchcraft.
Sir Walter Baldwin Spencer: Fieldwork. Bruce Dakowski (2004).
Explores the career of Walter Baldwin Spencer, whose studies of the Australian aborigines showed them to be a people with an extremely complex and subtle, rather than primitive, culture.
William Rivers: Everything Is Relatives. Bruce Dakowski (2004).
Reviews the life and work of social anthropologist William Rivers. Describes his work among the people of the Torres Straits and the Todas of southern India and how he was led to stress the importance of kinship ties into understanding culture. His efforts to provide anthropology with a sound scientific base are evaluated in detail.
Unity through culture. Christian Suhr (2011).
"Soanin Kilangit is determined to unite the people and attract international tourism through the revival of culture on Baluan Island in the South Pacific. He organizes the largest cultural festival ever held on the island. But some traditional leaders argue that Baluan never had culture. Culture comes from the white man and is now destroying their old tradition. Others, however, take the festival as a welcome opportunity to revolt against '70 years of cultural oppression' by Christianity. A struggle to define the past, present and future of Baluan culture erupts to the sound of thundering log drum rhythms."-- Container.
Familiar places. David MacDougall (2000).
Follows the efforts of a group of Australian Aborigines and the anthropologist Peter Sutton as they map the traditional lands of an Aboriginal family that wishes to return to its homeland in northern Queensland, Australia. Explains the politics of this Aboriginal movement of re-homestead old territorial lands (called "outstations"), and illustrates many of the problems faced by the returning natives.
Good-bye old man, or, The film of Tukuliyangenila a film about Mangatopi: A Tiwi bereavement ceremony. David MacDougall (2000).
Presents the elaborate "pukumani" or bereavement ceremony held to close the mourning period after the death of a senior Tiwi man on Melville Island.
Link-up diary. David MacDougall (2013).
"A film about the effects of the New South Wales government's long-term practice of forced removal of Aboriginal children. It takes the form of a personal journey by film-maker David MacDougall as he spends a week 'on the road' with three workers of Link-up, an Aboriginal organisation devoted to reuniting Aboriginal families whose children were taken away." --leaflet.
Takeover. David MacDougall (2012).
Presents an insider's view of events that followed an announcement made without warning on March 13, 1978, that the Queensland state government was taking over control of the Aboriginal community of Aurukun in the north of the State, displacing the Uniting Church which had managed the Aboriginal Reserve for 70 years. At the request of the community, filmmakers David and Judith MacDougall documented the events of the following weeks, as the community marshalled its supporters to resist the takeover, and a stream of lawyers, politicians, Church officials, government advisers and representatives of mainstream media arrived to talk with the Aboriginal Council and the community at large. Ostensibly driven by a desire to access the mineral wealth in the Aurukun area, the state government was resistant to modifying its position, but intervention from the Federal government forced a sequence of compromises, though not always with the community's knowledge or to their satisfaction. One of the major works produced by the AIAS Film Unit, this documentary observes the profound effect on an Aboriginal community of political and bureaucratic decisions made far away. Although specific to time and place, the film is timeless and universal in its observations of a conflict between an Indigenous minority and a powerful government.
My name is salt = Salz ist mein Name = Mon nom est sel. Farida Pacha (2015).
Year after year, for eight months, thousands of families in Kutch, Gujarat, India are attracted to the desert to bring salt from the burning ground. Each monsoon the salt fields are washed away, and the desert turns into the sea. Nevertheless, the salt workers return, proudly to produce the whitest salt of the earth.
I'm British but. Gurinder Chadha (2000).
Using Bhangra and Bangla music and the testimonies of young British Asians, the video uncovers a defiant popular culture--a synthesis--part Asian, part British.
The meaning of life. Hugh Brody (2008).
Looks at a new model for rehabilitating prisoners--a collaboration between the Correctional Service of Canada and the Chehalis Nation of British Columbia--and explores a different way of looking at punishment and rehabilitation. This documentary was filmed at Kwikwexwelhp (formerly known as the Elbow Lake Correctional Facility) in Harrison Mills, B.C. It shows that a prison system can be changed by including community in the process. Seventy per cent of the men at Kwìkwèxwelhp are from First Nations backgrounds. The remainder have agreed to accept Aboriginal spirituality and community as central elements in a rehabilitation program. Most of them are serving life sentences: the men followed in the film have committed murders, armed robberies and grievous sexual crimes. All of the inmates are struggling to find meaning in lives that have gone agonizingly wrong. Through interviews with inmates and elders, observing daily routines and activities at the prison, and following three men who have been recently released on parole, the film examines the question of what incarceration means within our society and the hope that a new approach may bring.
Time immemorial. Hugh Brody (2011).
The Nisga'a tribe of northwestern British Columbia has long led the fight for aboriginal rights in Canada. This film chronicles their struggle as they take their case for land rights all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada.
"A unique record of the Khomani San of the Kalahari, Tracks across sand brings together the story of Africa's first Bushman claim, from preparation through the twelve years after the claim was granted. Seen through the eyes and told in the words of the Khomani San, Tracks brings us into the heart of the new South Africa, a chronicle of the struggle for indigenous rights by a people who are defying a history that has attempted and failed to make them disappear."--Packaging.
The Yirrkala Film Project. Ian Dunlop (2007).
"Yirrkala was an isolated mission station until the coming of a huge bauxite mine in the late 1960s. The impact of the mine on the Yolngu, the Aboriginal people of northeast Arnhem Land, and their response is a major theme of this long-term film project. Twenty two films document many aspects of Yolngu life. Each stands on its own but each is also part of a rich mosaic. The relationship between people and their clans, ritual, art and land is an intertwining theme. Several major ceremonies are documented."--Container.
Aatsinki: The story of Arctic cowboys. Jessica Oreck (2014).
Brothers Aarne and Lasse Aatsinki are cowboys of the Arctic. Quiet but good natured, dare-devilish but humble, rugged but gentle, and exceptionally knowledgeable when it comes to their little slice of wilderness. The brothers, along with their wives and children, live well north of the Arctic Circle in Finnish Lapland, where they are the leaders of a collective of traditional reindeer herders who manage the last group of wild reindeer in all of Finland. Aatsinki follows the family for the span of one year, quietly observing their seasonal routines and the difficulties and joys of a life so closely tied to the land. Though, on the surface, Aatsinki is the story of a single family, its underlying narrative is one of global consequences and connections. Between their uncanny understanding of the landscape and their reindeer on the one hand, and their heavy reliance on snowmobiles and helicopters on the other, the herders have been categorized as beacons of sustainability and demons of environmentalism-- in essence, poster children for simplicity and technology alike.
Beetle queen conquers Tokyo. Jessica Oreck (2010).
This documentary explores Japan's fascination and love affair with insects. The film intertwines their love for something so mundane, be it a beetle or butterfly, with their cultural values and traditions. In the end, it challenges viewers to not only alter their view of insects but also our lives.
Diya. Judith MacDougall (2001).
This ethnographic documentary provides a new way of exploring the complex social life surrounding material objects. A diya is a small terracotta oil lamp used throughout India in religious ceremonies. A family of potters is filmed as they make diyas in the increasingly frantic days before Diwali, the "Festival of Lights." The lamps are produced on a potter's wheel, then sold in the bazaar, to be used as part of the Diwali puja ceremonies, after which they are discarded and returned to the earth.
The house-opening. Judith MacDougall (2011).
The house opening ceremony is a ritual purification following the death of an inhabitant. This film follows Geraldine Kawengka, widow of a recently deceased man, as the ceremony is prepared and carried out on the Aboriginal settlement of Aurukun.
Experimental ethnographies: Four short films. Kathryn Ramey (2013).
Endless present: An unconventional and multi-layered approach to autobiography, incorporating hand-processed abstractions, ethnography, and the works of anthropologist Ray Birdwistall and artist On Kawara.
Fall: From the tale of Icarus to Plato's cave analogy and through the fragile materiality of hand processed 35mm film, Fall relates the pain of knowledge acquisition as a girl becomes a woman and one turns into two.
The passenger: With whispered voice-over, text on screen, singing and anthropologists Jacques Van Flack and Ray Birdwhistell intoning analysis, the passenger is a hand-processed multi-vocal film meditation on madness, motherhood, psychoanalysis and the possibility of escaping one's fate. The passenger is a personal, experimental, 16mm film that addresses my tenuous relationship with my mentally ill mother and my reservations about pregnancy, birth, and parenthood.
West: An experimental documentary about Elizabeth Crandall Perry: adventurer, midwife and distant ancestor to the filmmaker. Ramey and her then 5-yr old son, explore the path Perry took across the American West and film side-by-side through monuments to American expansionism until they arrive at the family farm in Oregon. Juxtaposing found footage, historical narrative and contemporary looks at the Willamette Valley, the film is a meditation on how to understand a past fraught with contradictory points of view and the role of the artist in the making of meaning.
Tales of the waria. Kathy Huang (2011).
This film follows a community of transgender women in Indonesia, the world's largest Muslim country, as they search for romance and intimacy. Uncover a world that not only defies our expectations of gender and Islam, but also reveals our endless capacity as human beings to search for love -- whatever the consequences.
How a people live. Lisa Jackson (2012).
Documentary on the Gwa'sala-'Nakwaxda'xw Nation, which the Canadian government forcibly relocated from its traditional territories on the coast of British Columbia in 1964.
Marina Abramović the artist is present. Matthew Akers (2012).
Seductive, fearless, and outrageous, Serbian performance artist Marina Abramovic has been redefining art for nearly forty years. Using her body as a vehicle, she creates performances that challenge, shock, and move us. This is a mesmerizing journey into the world of radical performance and an intimate portrait of an astonishingly magnetic, endlessly intriguing woman who draws no distinction between life and art.
A Balinese family the Karmas of Bajoeng Gedé. Mead/Bateson (2006).
A study of a Balinese family showing the way in which father and mother treat the three younger children-- the lap baby, the knee baby, and the child nurse.
First days in the life of a New Guinea baby. Mead/Bateson (2000).
Shows the treatment of a newborn baby among the Iatmul, a headhunting tribe of New Guinea. Studies the baby from several minutes after birth to the fifth day of life, as it is nursed, bathed, and cared for by its parents.
Karba's first years a study of Balinese childhood. Mead/Bateson (2006).
A series of scenes in the life of a Balinese child, beginning with a seventh-month birthday ceremonial, showing the child's relationships to parents, aunts and uncles, child nurse, and other children, as he is suckled, taught to walk and to dance, teased, and titiliated. Demonstrates the process by which a Balinese child's responsiveness is muted as parents stimulate and themselves fail to respond.
Learning to dance in Bali. Mead/Bateson (2005).
Shows how Balinese dancers learn their art, first by being physically guided by the instructor and then imitating the instructor's movements. The film also introduces I Mario, a famous Balinese dancer, who exchanges dance lessons with a visiting dancer from India to the accompaniment of a gamelan orchestra.
Hopi songs of the fourth world. Pat Ferrero (2008).
"Hopi : songs of the fourth world is a compelling study of the Hopi that captures their deep spirituality and reveals their integration of art and daily life. Amidst beautiful images of Hopi land and life, a variety of Hopi--a farmer, a religious elder, grandmother, painter, potter and weaver--speak about the preservation of the Hopi way. Their philosophy of living in balance and harmony with nature is a model to the Western world of an environmental ethic in action"--Container.
Four films by Robert Ascher. Robert Ascher (2014).
Cycle: an animated film based on a non-sacred myth of the Wulamba, a native people of northeastern Australia. The sound track of Cycle is in Wulamba. The narrator assumes familiarity with the myths of his people. He does not tell a myth rather he indirectly recalls central figures in Wulamba mythology by utilizing poetic devices, particularly the repetition of key words: lotus, evening star, moon, and the name of a clay-pan where past and future events are played out in the present. The images complement but do not illustrate the narration. On the clay-pan, people collect lotus, the roots of which become an evening star. It is here, too, on the pan, that a being, rejecting mortality, changes himself to moon. The horn of light visible at the close of moon's period drops into the sea where it becomes a nautilus shell. The process is a never ending cycle relating people, the spiritual world, and the natural environment.
Bar Yohai: Shimon Bar Yohai was a second century visionary who, according to popular belief, wrote the Zohar, the main Kabbalah text of the Jewish mystical tradition. The film's images-- tree, mirror, candelabra and the ten dots with which each is constructed-- are Kaballah figures for how the world got started and keeps going. Once every year there is a celebration honoring Bar Yohai at his tomb in Meron, Israel. The last scene is composed from photographs taken on the roof of the tomb during the celebration. The soundtrack, a song praising Bar Yohai, was also recorded during the celebration in a town (Safed) a few miles from the tomb.
Blue, a Tlingit odyssey: In just about every known culture, there is a myth in which a hero ventures forth, discovers something of great value, and then returns home with his gift. The details may vary from culture to culture, but everywhere the broad outline is maintained. Blue is a visual rendering of the Tlingit hero myth. The Tlingit are Native Americans who live in southeast Alaska. In their version of the myth, the heroes are four brothers who go in search of blue. The film starts with a necessary preface. The world is dark. Raven, the trickster, releases the sun from its box, the world is illuminated, and the odyssey begins. In part one, The Search, the brothers set out on a sea journey encountering marvelous creatures along the way. Action in the second part, entitled The Find, takes place mostly within a cave where the brothers find blue. The brothers find and take something so valuable that they are pursued and a storm develops. One of the brothers dies in the storm the others, with their gift of blue, complete the trip home.
The Golem: Take some soil, knead it with water, and, together with a companion, chant certain combinations of the Hebrew alphabet. This formula, written down in the 3rd or 4th century, is essential for the creation of a golem, an artificial person. For ten centuries golems thus created lived in the imaginations of their creators. After that they became corporeal presences that anyone could see. Still later golems could pose real dangers and had to be destroyed by their creators. The notion of the golem is persistent and still evolving. Today golems may be found in science, technology and art. They are often associated with robots, computers, and new organisms created through biotechnology. In several 20th century paintings, short stories, plays and novels, golems are central figures. There is a golem opera, a golem poem, a golem ballet and a golem orchestral suite. And in more than a half dozen live action movies, a golem is the main character. The Golem, an animated film, was created by drawing directly on clear film stock one frame at a time. There are over 6,000 individual drawings. The film's soundtrack is derived from the earliest manual for golem making the brevity of the film allows concentration on the essentials of the story. Although every film is, in some sense, an interpretation, The Golem leaves ample room for viewers to find their own meaning.
La mémoire dure Memory resists. Rosella Ragazzi (2005).
Filmed over the course of nine months at a primary school in Paris, the film profiles five immigrant children as they undertake their first years of formal education in France. The children are currently in a total language immersion class designed to prepare them for entering normal primary school classes as soon as possible. Issues of immigration, cultural assimilation, social integration and educational process are analyzed within the context of this film.
As long as there's breath. Stephanie Spray (2014).
"Stephanie Spray's third film documenting the lives of the Gayeks family in Nepal. Building on a deep bond of trust and filming their most private moments, Spray captures a family struggling for cohesion after a beloved son leaves to find work in India. Taking its title from a common Nepali aphorism, 'As long as there's breath, there's hope,' the film patiently observes the Gayeks daily rituals as they prepare for a long day's work in the fields, share meals together, harvest crops, and rest. In one remarkable scene, three generations of women from this family gather in the shade to candidly discuss issues of sexuality and marital life. Using magnificent long takes and employing an intimacy that few filmmakers can achieve (Spray was eventually adopted by the Gayeks family), As long as there's breath connects the psychological effects of a loved one's absence to the most mundane yet essential acts of work, laying bare the family's innermost fears and hopes"--Container.
The Kayapo. Terence Turner (2008).
There are more than 2000 Kayapo Indians living in the Amazonian jungle in Brazil. Gold was found in the area and their land was invaded by miners. However, they manage to protect their mine and profits, and preserve their traditional way of life with these profits.
Malaria fever wars. (2005).
Highlights man's interminable fight against malaria -- an infectious disease carried by mosquitos -- that causes millions of deaths annually. This film weaves the stories of a few heroic individuals -- Chief Peter Kombo, Prof. Jeffrey Sachs, and Prof. Adrian Hill -- each fighting a unique battle to bring the malaria crisis to global attention. In the remote Kenyan village of Kiagware, Chief Peter Kombo struggles with getting help and medical attention from local authorities to treat the dangerously sick villagers -- who are often children. Meanwhile, on the world stage, Prof. Jeffrey Sachs encourages wealthy countries to contribute the desperately needed funds and supplies and Prof. Adrian Hill has spent a decade researching the elusive vaccine. When an unexpected outbreak occurs in Palm Beach County, Florida, the health and safety of thousands of Americans are at risk. Will this crisis provide the necessary pressure for governments to finally investigate malaria prevention and treatment?
Fires in the mirror Crown Heights, Brooklyn, and other identities. Anna Deveare Smith (2009).
On Aug. 19, 1991, in Crown Heights (Brooklyn, N.Y.), a Hasidic man accidentally ran over a 7-year-old Black boy (Gavin Cato). Three hours later a young Jewish scholar (Yankel Rosenbaum) was murdered by Black youths. Four days of fire-bombing and riots ensued. Utilizing verbatim excerpts from interviews she conducted, Anna Deavere Smith acts out the roles of 18 people involved in the racial conflict, trying to present the differing viewpoints. Includes actual film footage of the riots and violence.
Duvarlar Mauern = Walls. Can Candan (2000).
Immigrants to Germany from Turkey talk about their past, present, and possible future, reflecting on what the opening of the Wall and unification of the two Germanys meant for them and how increasing hostilities are affecting their sense of belonging in the new Germany.
Le Cousin Jules Cousin Jules. Dominique Benicheti (2012).
A lost masterpiece of cinema, now restored and available for the first time in years. An ode to rural France and the simple joys of life, Dominique Benicheti captures the daily routine and rituals of his cousin Jules, a blacksmith, living with his wife, Felice, on a small farm in the French countryside.
Blink. Elizabeth Thompson (2012).
Once a fanatical rising star in the white supremacist movement, Greg Winthrow grapples with a legacy of hatred handed down across generations in this haunting documentary. The film reveals how class divisions are masked by racial conflict and follows the intense, angry and breathtakingly resourceful Winthrow as he grapples with his own redemption from a heritage of violence.
Brincando el charco portrait of a Puerto Rican. Frances Negrón-Muntaner (2008).
Brincando el charco contemplates the notion of "identity" through the experiences of a Puerto Rican woman living in New York. In a mix of fiction, archival footage, processed interviews and soap opera drama, this film tells the story of Claudia Marin, a middle-class, light-skinned Puerto Rican, lesbian, photographer/videographer who is attempting to construct a sense of community in the U.S.
La danse des Wodaabe. Frederick Wiseman (2015).
La danse des Wodaabe, and, Wodaabe : dance instead of war: Thousands of Wodaabe Fulani nomads meet annually in the heart of the Nigerian Sahel for geerewol, a ceremonial gathering where two lineages confront each other through song and dance. La danse de Jupiter: The leader of the Congolese musical group, Jupiter Bokondji, takes the viewer on a tour of the slums of Kinshasa. He shows a city where vocal expressions are varied and colorful, from rumba to rap, and the music is often played on improvised instruments.
Titicut follies. Frederick Wiseman (2007).
Filmed at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Bridgewater, this documentary shows harsh scenes of the life and treatment of the criminally insane inmates. Shows scenes of the daily life of the men, interspersed with shots from the inmates' talent show.
Sleep furiously. Gideon Koppel (2011).
Set in a small farming community in mid-Wales, a place where the director's parents-both refugees-found a home. This is a landscape and population that is changing rapidly as small scale agriculture is disappearing and the generation who inhabited a pre-mechanized world is dying out. Much influenced by his conversations with the writer Peter Handke, the filmmaker leads us on a poetic and profound journey into a world of endings and beginnings a world of stuffed owls, sheep, and fire.
In the shadow of the sun. Harry Freeland (2013).
A story about human rights, deep-rooted superstition, and incredible strength, In The Shadow of the Sun explores the troubling increase of violence and brutal murders in Tanzania targeting people with albinism. For hundreds of years people with albinism have been killed at birth and rejected by their communities. A lack of melanin means that people with albinism are left with little or no pigment in the skin, hair and eyes. This leads to epidemic rates of skin cancer and an average life expectancy of just 35 years in Africa. In rural Tanzania, it is a belief that people with albinism are not African, leaving those suffering from the condition with little sense of racial identity in their white skin. Witch doctors have been known to spread a belief that the body parts of albino people will bring wealth and good fortune. Referred to as "White Ghosts" and "Devils" within their communities, the superstition surrounding them has grown so strong that people with albinism now fear for their lives. Filmed over six years, In The Shadow Of The Sun tells the incredible story of two albino men as they attempt to follow their dreams in the face of prejudice and fear: Vedastus, a quietly determined 15-year-old, who still hopes of completing his education, and Josephat Torner, a young man who has dedicated his life to campaigning against the discrimination of his people. In these two impassioned individuals, we recognize our most basic human needs: to belong to a community of others, to forge our own sense of personal identity, and the unimaginable lengths to which we must go to preserve our dignity.
Escape fire the fight to rescue American healthcare. Heineman and Froemke (2013).
Examines the U.S. healthcare crisis, citing demands for higher profits by the health care industry as the cause. Individuals tell of their experiences with the healthcare system. Health care professionals and other experts offer their opinions on the situation.
Bowl of bone: Tale of the syuwe. Jan-Marie Martell (2010).
A syuwe is a Salish healer, astral traveller, herbalist, medicine woman and visionary whose power is the accumulation of secret knowledge that has appeared as a gift through dreams and is passed down within a family. This film examines the relationship between the syuwe Annie York and the filmmaker and the transformative process of the quest for self-knowledge in their friendship.
Let the fire burn. Jason Osder (2014).
Comprised of found footage and sound bites, Let the fire burn describes the conflict between the Black Power group MOVE and the people and city government of Philadelphia, culminating in the armed standoff of May 13, 1985, in which one police officer and eleven MOVE members were killed, ending when Philadelphia police dropped a bomb on the row house that served as MOVE headquarters.
Ishi, the last Yahi. Jed Riffe, Pamela Roberts (2002).
Presents a narrated version of the discovery of Ishi, last member of the Yahi Indian tribe, and events in his life after coming into the white man's world.
Balkan rhapsodies 78 measures of war. Jeff Daniel Silva (2008).
Balkan Rhapsodies is an episodic documentary poem that interweaves a mosaic of encounters, observations, and reflections from Silva's travels throughout war-torn Serbia and Kosovo between 1999-2005. An American filmmaker and ethnographer, Jeff Daniel Silva, was the first US civilian allowed entry into a devastated Serbia in 1999 just days after the NATO bombings. Balkan Rhapsodies is an episodic documentary poem that interweaves a mosaic of encounters, observations, and reflections from Silva's travels throughout war-torn Serbia and Kosovo between 1999-2005. An American filmmaker and ethnographer, Jeff Daniel Silva, was the first US civilian allowed entry into a devastated Serbia in 1999 just days after the NATO bombings. By immersing himself intimately into the lives of people he meets, the film grapples with the inexplicable contradictions he encounters while digging deeper in search for comprehension.
Nong jia le Peasant family happiness. Jenny Chio (2013).
This ethnographic film depicts the everyday experience of "doing tourism" in two rural, ethnic tourism destinations in contemporary China: Ping'an and Upper Jidao villages. Focusing on the perspectives of village residents, this film portrays how modern, rural Chinese negotiate between the day-to-day consequences of tourist arrivals in their home villages and ideal projections of who they are and what their lives can achieve through tourism development.
Johan van der Keuken. Volume 1 the complete collection. Johan Van der Keuken (2006).
I [love] money: New York, Geneva, Hong Kong and Amsterdam are major hubs of the world's economy. Great amounts of money circulate there, and whereas poverty is ubiquitous in the streets of New York, Geneva carefully protects its wealth behind impeccable facades. No one is unaffected by the myth of the all-powerful Dollar: the under-privileged struggle to survive talking about their unattainable dream, while businessmen, from the safe distance of their offices, lay down the tenets of the financial philosophy. Beauty: The dream world of a fascist spy named Beauty who destroys himself by attempting to impose a rigid working order on the world. The recurring themes of van der Keuken's work --- time, violence, the perception of reality -- are explored here with exceptional intensity. A moment's silence: One of John van der Keuken's first independent projects produced on an extremely modest budget. The coming and going of street traffic in Amsterdam slows and finally the city is immobilized. In the silence, short live sequences introduce simple poetic observations of a peaceful urban landscape. Eye above the well: Explores India's spiritual and economic condition, moving from the city to the countryside in the region of Kerala, as it focuses on the essence of that civilization. Captured without commentary by a gliding camera are a cacophony of distinctly nonwestern sights and sounds: the bustling city streets, the serene landscapes of the surrounding countryside, a family preparing for dinner, an elderly actor performing his mythological drama, a modest country moneylender traveling from village to village, young girls at their singing lessons. Lucebert, time and farewell: One of the greatest Dutch poets of the twentieth century, Lucebert was also a major painter who participated in the Cobra movement. This is van der Keuken's acclaimed triptych of three short films on Lucerbert produced in 1962, 1966, and 1994. Unanswered question: A didactic verse on the mechanic (or rather, organic) function of memory and therefore, also on cinema. On animal locomotion: An illustration of the human body in motion with music from the Dutch composer Willem Breuker. Face value: Rejecting linear narrative storytelling, the director offers an epic of humanity and cultural diversity through a cartography of faces, the reflection of an imaginary Europe, made up of London, Marseilles, Prague, and the Netherlands. Mask: During the celebrations of the bicentennial of the French Revolution, Johan van der Keuken made a film about the revolutionary ideas of equality, liberty, and fraternity. Rather than focusing on the festivities, he lingers on the crowds in the metro and on the platform. Among them is a homeless member of the poor class who is ignored by his more affluent countrymen. A cutting perspective on the contradictions that permeate French society.
Johan van der Keuken. Volume 2 the complete collection. Johan Van der Keuken (2007).
Van der Keuken explores his hometown Amsterdam and its inhabitants, looks at brass bands in Nepal, Indonesia, Ghana, and Suriname and how they reflect their colonial past and present culture, documents the 1993 film festival held in Sarajevo amidst winter and war, meditates on the repetitve movements found in everyday life, explores an artist's photo studio and filmmaking in general. Thierry Nouel documents Van der Keuken and his films.
Johan van der Keuken. Volume 3 the complete collection. Johan Van der Keuken (2008).
Features work from van der Keuken's career, including The White Castle, Vietnam Opera, The Spirit of the Time and more, revealing the filmmakers curiosity about life. White castle: A study, in parallel montage, of working-class communities in Formentera, Spain, and Columbus, Ohio.
Johan van der Keuken. Volume 4 the complete collection. Johan Van der Keuken (2007).
This boxed set spotlights work from this legendary filmmaker s mid-career, including The Flat Jungle, a feature-length documentary about the Wadden Sea wetlands, Southbound, a complex chronicle of a trip from Amsterdam to Egypt, and The Palestinians, a documentary shot in Lebanon in 1975 just before the civil war.
Johan van der Keuken. Volume 5 the complete collection. Johan Van der Keuken (2007).
In this final volume in the collection, the focus is on death and dying as van der Keuken continues to make films after learning that he is terminally ill. The long holiday: ""The long holiday follows the director and his wife as they travel around the globe from Bhoutan in Africa to Rio to San Francisco, spending their last years together taking in the sights and sounds of the world.""--Container. For the time being: ""On a sunny day in January 2001, Johan died. What he left us in the screening room was a nine-minute segment--begun in November 2000 with Menno Borema--the first part of the film that he would never finish. These nine minutes make up a dynamic sequence in which Johan presents little portraits of the people he met during his travels.""--Container. Last words : my sister Yoka: ""Van der Keuken wrote about this film: 'My sister Yoka, who was two-and-a-half years older that I am, died of cancer on August 8, 1997. Eight days before Yoka's death, my wife, Noshka, and I had a long conversation with her that I filmed with a video camera. Two days before Yoka died, I filmed a second conversation, a short one this time. I had asked her, albeit somewhat reluctantly, for her permission to film. She viewed these last filmed conversations as a very important ""project.""'""--Container. Last words: ""The stepson of van der Keuken followed the example of the older man with Last words : my sister Yoka and filmed his father during his last days.""--Container.
The Black Fatherhood Project. Jordan Thierry (2013).
"The Black Fatherhood Project offers context and conversation in this honest exploration of fatherhood in Black America. Through a telling of his own story and interviews with historians, filmmaker Jordan Thierry traces the roots of the fatherless Black home and reveals a history much complex and profound than is often told. Putting that history into perspective is a dialogue among fathers discussing their experiences, inspirations, and insight on how communities can come together to ensure the power of a father's love is not lost on America's Black children"--Container.
Lola + Bilidikid. Kutlug Ataman (2000).
Set in the underworld of contemporary Berlin, the video offers a rare glimpse into a Turkish immigrant sub-culture in which sixteen-year-old Murat is a voyeur to macho hustlers and gay sex, torn between the pressures of his Muslim family and his need to experience this taboo arena.
Bontoc eulogy. Marlon Fuentes (2007).
A personal and poignant docudrama that examines the Filipino experience at the 1904 St. Louis World's fair. The film focuses on the filmmaker's grandfather, an Igorot warrior, one of the 1,100 tribal natives displayed as anthropological 'specimens' in the Philippine village exhibit. A unique fusion of rare archival images, verité, and carefully orchestrated visual sequences shot in the present, the film is an innovative investigation of history, memory and the spectacle of the "other" in the turn-of-the-century America.
I used to be darker. Matthew Porterfield (2013).
When Taryn, a Northern Irish runaway, finds herself in trouble in Ocean City, she seeks refuge with her aunt and uncle in Baltimore. But Kim and Bill have problems of their own: they're trying to handle the end of their marriage gracefully for the sake of their daughter Abby. A story of family revelations, people finding each other and letting each other go, looking for love where they've found it before, and when that doesn't work, figuring out where they might find it next.
Putty Hill Hamilton. Matthew Porterfield (2011).
Putty Hill: A beautifully realized portrait of a close-knit community on the outskirts of Baltimore. At a neighborhood karaoke bar, friends and family gather to remember a young man who passed away. Knowing little about his final days, they attempt to reconstruct his life. In the process, they offer a window onto their own lives, an evocative picture of working-class America, dislocated from the progress and mobility around them, but united in pursuit of a shared dream. Hamilton: Chronicles two summer days in the life of two young parents living in a Baltimore suburb.
Incident at Oglala the Leonard Peltier story. Michael Apted (2004).
Examines the 1975 incident where armed FBI agents illegally entered the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation, resulting in the deaths of a Native American and two FBI agents. Explores the controversy and potential abuse of justice surrounding the case of Leonard Peltier, who was the sole person in the incident convicted of murder and sentenced to life in prison.
Eskimos of Pond Inlet. Michael Grigsby, Hugh Brody (2012).
The Inuits of Pond Inlet, a new village in North Baffin Island built by the Canadian government, are laborers, and their children attend government school. The Inuits, formerly known as Eskimos, talk about their lifestyle before and since the arrival of the white man, their land rights and their relationship with the whites and the changes forced upon them by the encroaching culture of white society.
Le quattro volte. Michelangelo Frammartino (2011).
With little dialogue, this film is a meditation on the mysterious cycles of life. Set in Italy's mountainous region of Calabria, it traces the path of one goatherder's soul as it passes from human to animal to vegetable to mineral. Director Michelangelo Frammartino was inspired by Pythagoras' belief in 'four-fold transmigration' of souls, but his film is far more physical than philosophical. An ineffably beautiful meditation on the mysterious cycles of life. Set in Italy's mountainous region of Calabria, it traces the path of one goat-herder's soul, as it passes from human to animal to vegetable to mineral. Director Michelangelo Frammartino was inspired by Pythagoras' belief in 'four-fold transmigration' of souls, but his film is far more physical than philosophical.
Katinoula. Myrna Tsapa (2012).
Katinoula is elderly but still serves as a housekeeper for another Greek lady living in Cairo, Egypt. Her family and friends have all preceded her in death, but she still lives a productive and happy life. The film follows her through her daily routine, starting with making Turkish coffee in the morning.
The perfect runner. Niobe Thompson (2012).
How did our ancestors survive the shift from trees to land? How did Homo sapiens evolve to dominate the planet? How did our ancestors hunt before they developed weapons? The answer, you'll be amazed to learn, is that humans became nature's perfect endurance runners. From Africa's Great Rift Valley to the highlands of Ethiopia, from the most remote place in Arctic Siberia to one of the world's toughest ultra marathons in the Canadian Rockies, anthropologist and host Niobe Thompson takes us on a journey that weaves cutting-edge science with gripping adventure, and asks what today's runners can learn from our evolutionary past. Finally understand the science and sport of barefoot running.
Robinson in ruins. Patrick Keiller (2011).
"Patrick Keiller's latest essay-film in his Robinson series (London and Robinson in Space) combines ironic, witty denunciation of society's domination by markets with homage to the wonders of the biosphere. Newly released from prison, mysterious would-be scholar Robinson has been haunting the Oxfordshire countryside with a ciné camera. A few months later, film cans and a notebook are discovered in a derelict caravan: the results of his search for the origins of capitalist catastrophe in the English landscape. Researchers assemble the material as a film, narrated by their institution's co-founder."--Container.
Duch: master of the forges of Hell. Rithy Panh (2013).
Between 1975 and 1979, the Khmer Rouge was responsible for the death of 1.8 million people, a quarter of the Cambodia population. Kaing Guek Eav, known as Duch, directed both the M13 and S21 centers where tens of thousands of people were tortured and executed. A horrifying in-depth interview with Duch, who candidly talks about his ascension in the Khmer Rouge party, and his involvement in the mass murder of his fellow Cambodians.
Un soir après la guerre. Rithy Panh (2008).
August 1992. Savannah, 28 years old, finds himself back in Phnom Penh after four years on Cambodia's northern front, fighting the Khmer Rouge. Like the rest of his generation, he's known only war since infancy, camps, hunger and massacres. All he's got left now is his uncle, Sôn, as the rest of the family was entirely annihilated by Pol Pot's regime. One evening, at the dance bar where his war buddy Maly is working as bouncer, Savannah falls prey to the charm of the beautiful Srey Poeuv, one of the bar girls, who, from time to time, also serve the desires of the richest patrons. The two young people from a sacrificed generation are soon to be victims to their own passion. Madly in love with Srey Poeuv, Savannah goes back to the ring and kick boxing. He tries to convince the young girl to give up her work as "companion" and to live a "normal life" with him. They make a pact, to try never again to sell their bodies, in any fashion. But it's already too late in their precarious universe, passion dragging along with it the one who wanted to live toward an ineluctable death, while forcing the one who wanted to die to live with the memory of their love.
The missing picture. Rithy Panh (2014).
Explores filmmaker Rithy Panh's quest to create the missing images during the period when the Khmer Rouge ruled over Cambodia between 1975 and 1979. The film uses wood figures, archival footage, and narration to recreate recount his firsthand experiences of his family and friends' suffering during the communist regime.
Blunden Harbour. Robert Gardner (2004).
Portrays Pacific Northwest Indian life as seen in one group of Kwakiutl Indians living in Blunden Harbour and sustaining themselves by the sea. The narration recounts their legends and depicts their present workday life.
Box of treasures. Robert Gardner (2007).
"In the late 19th century, the Canadian government removed ritual objects from the possession of the Kwakiut'l. In 1921 the Kwakiut'l people of Alert Bay, British Columbia, held their last secret potlatch. In 1980 at Alert Bay, the U'mista Cultural Centre...opened its doors to receive and house the cultural treasures which were seized decades earlier..."--Container.
Gods and kings = Dioses y reyes. Robin Blotnick (2013).
In the muddy market square of Momostenango, Guatemala, where shamans burn offerings in the shadow of the Catholic church, a bizarre spectacle is arriving. Horror movie monsters jostle through the crowd, followed by Mexican pop stars, Japanese game avatars, and dictators from the dark years of the 1980s. Unlike the folkloric performances long studied by anthropologists, the new Disfraz dance won't show up on any postcard. In some villages, it's even been banned for the way it frightens tourists. So how did these fiberglass masks of Xena: Warrior Princess come to be blessed in the smoke of Maya altars?--Container.
The chocolate farmer. Rohan Fernando (2012).
"In an unspoiled corner of southern Belize, cacao farmer Eladio Pop manually works his plantation in the tradition of his Mayan ancestors: as a steward of the land. But as the Pop family struggles to preserve their values, the world around them suddenly and dramatically changes. A tender portrait of a culture being faced with an 'adapt or die' ultimatum by the world around them"--Container.
Stories we tell. Sarah Polley (2013).
A "genre-twisting film by director Sarah Polley, who investigates the elusive truths of her eclectic family of storytellers as she playfully interrogates a cast of characters who each relate their version of the family mythology. Polley reveals the essence of family as she uncovers the secrets buried deep within-- "--Container.
Manakamana. Stephanie Spray (2013).
"Filmed entirely inside the narrow confines of a cable car, high above a jungle in Nepal that transports villagers to an ancient mountaintop temple, [Manakamana] is an acute ethnographic investigation into culture, religion, technology and modernity ... For centuries, devoted pilgrims hoping to reach the fabled temple needed to undertake an arduous multi-day journey. Today, because of a new cable car system, the entire trip takes just under 10 minutes ... [The film] opens a rich and vibrant window onto this world over the course of eleven such rides. Each is composed of a fixed shot, lasting between 9 and 10 minutes ... With every sequence, we are introduced to new passengers: an elderly man and his grandson, a trio of teenage rockers, a married couple, a mother and daughter, three wives. Through their shared conversations, anecdotes, observations about the surrounding landscape, and even their silence, a detailed picture of their lives emerges a story about history, tradition, and change"--Container.
Protection: Men and condoms in the time of HIV and AIDS. Steve Botkin (2010).
HIV/AIDS has ravaged entire populations in sub-Saharan Africa. Yet educational efforts to prevent the acceleration of the epidemic continue to clash with traditional cultural attitudes that view protected sex as unmanly. Protection provides a fascinating look at the origins of these attitudes, and examines how they are being kept alive by a set of hyper masculine myths that extol risk taking as an emblem of strength, virility, and potency. An eye-opening exploration of what it will take to make real and transformative change and eradicate HIV/AIDS once and for all.
Franz Boas, 1858-1942. T.W. Timreck (2010).
Profile of the German physicist who was responsible for shaping the course of American anthropology, by bringing discipline and order to a field that had previously dealt in subjective "race classification." Includes reflections and anecdotes by scholars and students, excerpts from journals and letters, and archival photographs. Discusses the Kwakiutl Indians, the principal subjects of Boas' field work.
The things I cannot change. Tanya Ballantyne (2010).
"Looks at a family in trouble, seen from the inside. There is the trouble with the police, the begging for stale bread at the convent, the birth of another child, and the father who explains his family's predicament. Although filmed in Montréal, this is the anatomy of poverty as it occurs in North America, seen by a camera that became part of the family's life for several weeks"--Container.
Night passage. Trinh Minh-ha (2004).
"Night Passage is a digital film on friendship and death. Made in homage to Miyazawa Kenji's classic novel 'The Milky Way Railroad,' the story evolves around the spiritual journey of a young woman, in the company of her best friend and a little boy, into a world of in-between realities. Their venture into and out of the land of 'awakened dreams' occurs during a long ride on a night train. The filmmaker elegantly depicts each encounter in two-dimensional space with a unique artistic gesture and ingeniously frames the passage as a series of rhythmic image sequences as seen through the window of a train."--Www.wmm.com.
The fourth dimension. Trinh Minh-ha (2001).
"An incisive and insightful examination of Japan through its art, culture, and social rituals. ... With its lush imagery, Minh-ha's Japan is viewed through mobile frames, with doors and windows sliding shut, revealing new vistas as it blocks out the old light."--Www.wmm.com.
Yumen Yumen. Xu Ruotao (2014).
"A collaboration between two Chinese artists, Xu Ruotao and Huang Xiang, and acclaimed American filmmaker J.P. Sniadecki, Yumen is a documentary-fiction hybrid that tells the story of a ghost town - Yumen, in China's western Gansu province - through a series of wandering characters and inventive vignettes. Produced with the support of Harvard's groundbreaking Sensory Ethnography Lab (People's Park, co-directed by Sniadecki, Leviathan, Sweetgrass and the upcoming Manakamana). Filmed in and around a once-thriving, oil-rich town that has since been left depleted and derelict, Yumen is a haunting, fragmented tale of hungry souls, restless youth, a wandering artist, and a lonely woman, all searching for human connection and a collective past among the town's crumbling landscape. One part "ruin porn," one part ghost story, and shot entirely on 16mm, the film brings together narrative gesture, performance art, and socialist realism into a crude and radiant collage that not only plays with convention and defies genre, but also pays homage to a disappearing life-world and a fading medium."--Container.
Aryan Kaganof's ten monologues from the lives of the serial killers. Aryan Kaganof (2014).
Documents Stelarc's of the Tokyo historical performance avant-garde, 1997. Aryan Kaganof (2014).
This work both documents Stelarc's performance art in Tokyo in 1997, but includes him talking about the piece in which he has remote viewers controlling his body through wires.
Matthew Barney creating stories. Aryan Kaganof (2014).
A documentary on the first retrospective exhibition of the art of Matthew Barney at the Boijmans Van Beuningen Museum, Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Night is coming: A threnody for the victims of Marikana. Aryan Kaganof (2014).
The director theorizes through the events of the Marikana Massacre about South African society, past and future. He represents the massacre of striking mine workers by the South African Police Service in 2012 as ritual murder, a form of sacrifice heralding ominous change.
Two Ron Athey films. Aryan Kaganof (2014).
Ron Athey is the Trojan whore: Performance artist Ron Athey creates a show using blood art and body-piercing. Ron Athey: it's scripted: Ron Athey discusses his performance art, which features blood art and body-piercing. Includes footage of his show from the Freakzone Festival in Lille, France in May 1977.
An inconsolable memory. Aryan Kaganof (2013).
Chronicles the history of the Eaon Group, a 20th century cultural organization headquarted in District Six in Cape Town, Africa. Focuses on the group's opera company, and how legislated "coloureds" could perform Italian operas despite naysayers. Uses archival footage and interviews with surviving members to document the continuously shifting collective memory of the political and cultural history surrounding the group.
Asephale's first performance the reserection. Aryan Kaganof (2013).
Five short films by Aryan Kaganof.
Diabelli variation XXXIII & other erratic short films. Aryan Kaganof (2013).
Five short films by Kaganof & Deane, originally released 2002-2003.
A funeral a strategy of difference and repetition. Aryan Kaganof (2012).
Philosophical road-movie about the deranged paedophile Friedrich Nietzsche and his murder obsessed self-mutilating sister Elisabeth.
Flames of passion. Aryan Kaganof (2012).
Aryan Kaganof's Re:Mix of David Lean's Brief Encounter starring Celia Johnson mashed up with Samuel Beckett's Rockaby as performed by Miss Billie Whitelaw.
Interactions a strategy of difference and repetition. Aryan Kaganof (2012).
Interactions is an edited excerpt from filmmaker, writer and artist Aryan Kaganof's new short film of the same name. Originating out of a commission by the Theater Institut Netherlands which wanted a "film report" on the Expert Meeting of art professionals held at the Goethe Institute in Johannesburg. Kaganof created a satire of bureaucracy, cultural administration and distorted power balances.
Nice to meet you, please don't rape me. Aryan Kaganof (2012).
The movie follows three rapists in South Africa, who live in a rape culture. Sexual, verbal, political, moral and psychological rape is common practice.
Sweetness. Aryan Kaganof (2012).
Sweetness exploits the mosaic form in order to present the discontinuous variety and incongruity of ordinary life. The monotonous demands of the film community - that cinema be used to present a fixed point of view from a single plane of perspective (the protagonist's) - represents a failure to see the real form of film at all. It is as if the public were suddenly to demand that department stores have only one department.
Venom and eternity. Aryan Kaganof (2012).
In the most general way, sexual behaviour is opposed to everyday behaviour as expenditure is to saving. If we behave in accordance with reason, we acquire all sorts of goods, we work to augment our resources or our learning, and strive in various ways to acquire more. As a rule, such conduct determines our sense of ourselves in social life. But at the moment of sexual fever we behave in a completely different way: we expend our energy without restraint, and squander a considerable amount of our vitality violently and with no profit to ourselves. Sexual pleasure has so much in common with destruction that we have named the moment of its paroxysm the 'little death'. In general, passionate destruction and reckless betrayal alone have the power to cause us to enter into the world of sex. Suffering and sadistically inflicted death defer the moment of collapse by no means do they run counter to it. In the same way prostitution, erotic vocabulary, the inevitable connection between sexuality and excretion, contribute to make the world of the senses a world of loss and destruction. It appears that our only true happiness is to spend vainly, and we always want to be sure of the uselessness of our expenditure we want to feel as far away as possible from th responsible world in which augmentation of resources is the rule. But we could go no further, since we would like to oppose it, and commonly in eroticism there is an impulse towards aggressive hatred, an impulse towards betrayal. This is why distress is connected to it, and wy, in counterpart, if the hatred is powerless, and the betrayal involuntary, the erotic element becomes ridiculous.
A leisure society of severe preponderence. Aryan Kaganof (2011).
A movie about the cult Crossing Border festival in Den Haag, edition 1995. Among the others, there were Blixa Bargeld, Mark E. Smith, David Thomas (Pere Ubu), in an underground spoken world celebration ... Interesting event with coolest of writers and musicians from all over. Even the most entertaining person in the film is Belgian writer Herman Brusselmans, which has the biggest nose in modern Belgium literature.
Reverie and other post-minimalist short films. Aryan Kaganof (2011).
A collection of short films by Aryan Kaganof.
The dead man 2 return of the dead man. Aryan Kaganof (2011).
A student film loosely based on the stories of Georges Bataille which produces an atmosphere of anti-eroticism.
The exhibition of vandalism. Aryan Kaganof (2011).
"The exhibition of vandalism" is a film documenting a healing ceremony performed by Zim Ngqawana and his former pupil Kyle Shepherd in the ravaged body of the Zimology Institute for higher learning in January 2010. The film was directed, shot and edited by Aryan Kaganof of African Noise Foundation, as a springboard to a further improvisation, vandalizm, that took place live in Johannesburg's gallery momo on March 7, 2010. The event was a fundraising effort towards rebuilding the Zimology Institute, desecrated by vandals earlier that month.
The legacy. Aryan Kaganof (2011).
Documents the composer's panel convened by Jonathan Eato as part of the ISM-SASRIM Conference, Stellenbosch University, Friday 16 July 2010. Includes footage of a performance by Louis Moholo, Zim Ngqawana, Tete Mbambisa and Kyle Shepherd.
Tokyo elegy. Aryan Kaganof (2011).
Wasted. Aryan Kaganof (2011).
A young couple get lost in the rave scene in Amsterdam.
G-string blues. Aryan Kaganof (2010).
Films a day in the life of South African blues guitarist Syd Kitchen. He talks about his life and discusses his guitar technique. While waiting to perform at a local program, Syd humourously comments on the musicians playing before him. The film concludes with excerpts from that concert.
The Last Poets, an African American cultural group, formed on the anniversary of Malcom X's birthday, May 19, 1968 in Harlem, N.Y. Their works are considered a precursor to hip-hop. One of their founding members was Kain. This documentary interweaves scenes with Kain reminiscing, reciting some of his works and talking about his relationship with God, and some dramatic pieces.
The Uprising of Hangberg is an activist documentary filmed by Dylan Valley and Aryan Kaganof in response to the events of a particular day. The original music score is by Stellenbosch University music student, Natasje van der Westhuizen. The documentary provides raw footage and eyewitness accounts of the attempts by the Western Cape Provincial Administration and the City of Cape Town to evict residents from their homes in Hangberg, Hout Bay in the Western Cape, edited to both highlight the brutality of the riots but also the failed promises of local politicians, a microcosm of the failed promises of the larger South Africa. On 21 September 2010, Cape Town Metro Police officers entered the township to forcibly remove several township residents and destroy their homes which were built above the determined firebreak. The Rastafarian community in Hangberg is central to the narrative developed in the film, which also documents Rastafarian Nyabingi, a resident of Hangberg chanting and drumming the traditional music of the Rastafarian religion. The Uprising of Hangberg works not only on the artistic level, but also as a political intervention enabling a marginalized community to speak of their oppression and trauma.
Blue notes for Bra' Geoff. Aryan Kaganof (2009).
Music criric Gwen Ansell has described this documentary as "the most complete example caught on film of SA'a other jazz identity : the one that explores harmonic inspirations freed from the constraints of the I-IV-V mbaqanga chords, to create South African new music." Features Zim Ngqawana.
Civilization and other chimeras observed during the making of an exceptionally artistic feature film De beschaving en andere hersenspinsels beschouwd tijdens het maken van een uiterst kunstzinnige speelfilm. Aryan Kaganof (2009).
Kaganof chronicles the making of artist Dick Tuinder's directional debut, the independent film Winterland. Not a typical making-of documentary as it isn't until late in the film when the pieces of Kaganof's puzzle fall into place that becomes clear that Tuinder's film includes segments of Tuinder acting as himself directing his actors.
Short film commemorates the revolutionary values of May '68 in France, 40 years on. Kaganof has re-invented the cut-up technique for this film, transforming the "random" aspect of the editing into an area of reflection and synthesis.
Herman Hesse, flying & other short films. Aryan Kaganof (2008).
A collection of short films by Aryan Kaganof.
SMS Sugar Man. Aryan Kaganof (2008).
A film shot completely with mobile phones, this is set in the Johannesburg underworld, centering on a pimp who has three prostitutes or "sugars."
The man who mediated himself to a climax. Aryan Kaganof (2008).
A collection of short films by Aryan Kaganof.
"The Electronic Music Symposium and the Unyazi Festival of 2005 observed through the visionary and techno eye of Aryan Kaganof (SMS Sugar Man). Vibrations and hypnotism collude to create sound and visual empathies in theatres or in the street, on a pavement. One more chapter in the exploration of African culture by the South African multimedia artist, in the inextricable relationship between memory and the present, traditional instruments and computer-generated sounds. The film has been described as "an important document of an historic occasion" by Dr. Michael Blake and "a very interesting record of a rather odd event" by Professor Christine Lucia. UNYAZI OF THE BUSHVELD is the first production of the AFRICAN NOISE FOUNDATION featuring the seamless sound design of Joel Assaizky (Hard Copy, Bunny Chow)." -- New Music website: http://newmusicsa.org.za/node/188
Kyodai makes the big time. Aryan Kaganof (2005).
Kyodai is a young actor in a relationship with Stephanie. Their lives are glamorous as they revel in the night life of Amsterdam. However, Kyodai begins to change, having casual sex here and there, and treating Stephanie as his sado-masochistic partner.
Stoned (immaculate) and other terrible short films. Aryan Kaganof (2004).
A collection of short films by Aryan Kaganof.
Western4.33. Aryan Kaganof (2004).
B.T. is a truck driver on his way from Johannesburg to Luderitz in Namibia. When he gets there he watches the sunset. He thinks about his great grandfather who perished in the German concentration camp on Shark Island. He thinks about his girlfriend who broke up with him. Or he broke up with her? Memory blends the personal pain of heartbtreak with the grand, sweeping pain of history. Western4.33 is a meditation on the impossible colonial dream the attempt to "civilize" Africa.
Giant steps an afrocentric approach to blackness now. Aryan Kaganof (2004).
Performances by and interviews with a group of South African jazz musicians.
Bantu continua uhuru nihilismus. Aryan Kaganof (2003).
An afro avant dance piece. World premiere was during the National Arts Festival, Grahamstown. It is a film about the great deception called the "new South Africa", the hoax of "post-apartheid". It is also a film about survival, about the neccesity of getting by and a film about masks and why we in this country all still wear them.
Sharp Sharp! the Kwaito story. Aryan Kaganof (2003).
The first serious analysis in film of a musical genre which serves both as a compendium of world dance music and uniquely South African contribution to global dance culture. Since it burst onto the scene in the early '90s, kwaito has become the most powerful articulation of the daily experiences and dreams of the first generation of black South Africans to come of age after apartheid. Detailed interviews with major musicians, producers and DJs, illustrated by choice clips, make for a highly entertaining and informative kwaito tour for newcomers and veteran fans alike.
Nostalgia for the future. Aryan Kaganof (2000).
This work was the first of the RE:MIX series and had its world premiere during the International Film Festival Rotterdam as part of the Sonic Fragments project, where Kaganof delivered his manifesto The poetics of digital fragmentation.
Beyond ultra-violence uneasy listening by Merzbow: A short investigation. Aryan Kaganof (1998).
This portrait of the godfather of electronic noise, Masami Akita, takes its structure from Kurt Schwitter's "Merzbau", literally a "junk building". Akita explains "if music is sex then noise is its pornography".
Mondo Roxy no other drugs required. Aryan Kaganof (1998).
World premiere at the Molodist Festival in Kiev, Ukraine : a portrait of the Roxy Club in Amsterdam before it burned down. The Roxy was the temple of House music in Europe. The documentary contextualizes this temple in a apocalyptic fin-de-siecle period of declining Western power.
Techno space and flow in the radical frame. Aryan Kaganof (1996).
Techno is music to lose yourself in, to forget the daily drudgery for a while. The artistic imperatives and the musicological philosophical principles of the new generation of musicians and producers.It's not light material, and is indeed at times heavy going, although that has everything to do with the choice of musicians and theareticians interviewed. What makes techno: space and flow in the radical frame such an exceptional documentary is the manner in which the interviews are woen into a 50 minute long techno-video clip. The film maker has fully exploited all the existing digital video techniques in order to showcase the dizzying possibilities of the medium.
Food Chains. Sanjay Rawal (2014). .
A country auction, Can I get a quarter? and Reflexive musings. Robert Steven Aibel, et al. (2012). Documentary Educational Resources.
A country auction is "an ethnographic film about an estate auction in a rural community in Pennsylvania. It examines the personal, social and economic processes involved when a family dissolves their homestead"--Container.
Can I get a quarter? is "a short observation of the auction of objects that remained unsold after the all day sale of the real estate and possessions of Paul Leitzel as shown in the film, A Country Auction"--Container.
Reflexive musings is "a uniquely reflexive examination of the successes and failures of A Country Auction as an anthropological film. The four producers take part in a prolonged critical discussion of the original film"--Container.
The sweetest sound. Alan Berliner, et al. (2009). Lorber HT Digital.
"With the intimacy and humor of a personal essay, Berliner dives headfirst inside the American name pool in search of the treasures and dangers hidden inside his own name. A film that starts out in search of identity slowly transforms into a meditation on mortality. Along the way, he confronts his parents about the origins of his name, his sister about the names she gave her children and visits the Jim Smith Society, the National Linda Convention, the streets of New York, Holocaust name memorials, the Vietnam Memorial and the AIDS Quilt. He also stumbles upon some surprising news about name changes at Ellis Island."--Director's Website.
Nobody's business. Alan Berliner, et al. (2009). Lorber HT Digital.
"Alan Berliner takes on his reclusive father as the reluctant subject of this poignant and graceful study of family history and memory. What emerges is a uniquely cinematic biography that finds both humor and pathos in the swirl of conflicts and affections that bind father and son. Ultimately this complex portrait is a meeting of the minds - where the past meets the present, where generations collide, and where the boundaries of family life are pushed, pulled, stretched, torn and surprisingly at times, also healed."--Container.
Wide awake. Alan Berliner, et al. (2009). Lorber HT Digital.
"Alan Berliner's uniquely personal tour through his life-long obsession with insomnia."--Container.
The family album. Alan Berliner, et al. (2009). Lorber HT Digital.
Utilizing a vast collection of home movies found at flea markets and yard sales, as well as oral histories and family recordings from the 1920s to the 1950s, the filmmaker weaves together a remarkable and emotionally electrifying portrait of the changing face of the American family. These authentic artifacts of American history and culture are edited together to illustrate the entire cycle of life from birth to death, from childhood to adulthood, to provide a moving experience of the universal drama of family life during the first half of the twentieth century.
Intimate stranger. Alan Berliner, et al. (2009). Lorber HT Digital.
"You've probably never heard of Joseph Cassuto, but by the end of this film you may think that he was the most elusive, fascinating and baffling man to have ever lived. Cassuto is filmmaker Alan Berliner's maternal grandfather, a Palestinian Jew who was a cotton buyer for the Japanese in Egypt prior to World War II. With Hitler's armies just miles away from Alexandria, Cassuto's family is split in half. They reunite in New York after the war, but Cassuto is restless there. He moves to Japan to spend eleven months of the year, virtually abandoning his wife and children in the U.S. while he pursues his business interests and a life-long love affair with Japanese culture. Seventeen years after his death, his grandson has constructed a poetic and emotional jigsaw puzzle out of the voluminous memorabilia of his grandfather's life story. What emerges is a curious legacy -- admiration and love from Cassuto's Japanese business associates; resentment from his family. Depending on who you ask, Cassuto was either a romantic adventurer or a shirker of family responsibility; a man at the center of historic events or a nobody."--Director's Website.
Brother's keeper. Joe Berlinger, et al. (2003). Docurama : Distributed by New Video.
"Brother's Keeper tells the story of the "Ward Boys," four eccentric brothers who shared the same dilapidated two-room shack for over 60 years. Living in isolation, without heat or running water, these elderly bachelors had virtually no contact with the outside world--until one was found dead in the bed he shared with his brother. By day's end, Delbert Ward "confessed" to suffocating his ailing brother as an act of mercy, but Munnsville believed Delbert had been framed. Was Delbert, an uneducated hermit with a low IQ, an innocent victim of police abuse? Was it a mercy killing--or was there another motive?"--Container.
The Paradise lost collection. Joe Berlinger, et al. (2008). Docurama.
Contains Paradise lost, the documentary investigating the gruesome 1993 murders of three Arkansas eight-year-olds and the teenagers accused of killing them; and Revelations : Paradise lost 2, which updates the story and delves into the shocking aftermath of the trials.
Terra blight. Isaac Brown, et al. (2012). Cinema Guild.
"Examines America's consumption of technology and the global problem of e-waste. The documentary traces the life cycle of computers from creation to disposal, and uncovers how these products are disposed of and where exactly they wind up. The United States, for example, is the only industrialized country that does not prohibit the export of its e-waste. So while seventy percent of America's e-waste is buried in toxic landfills, the rest is sent to developing countries. Terra Blight brings us to one such landfill in Ghana, where young boys scavenge through mountains of broken computers, keyboards and laptops searching for copper and other metals. The documentary also shows us a possible solution to the problem, taking us inside a new high-tech facility in the United States where e-waste is efficiently recycled."--Container.
Roses in December. Ana Carrigan, et al. (2007). First Run Features.
Chronicles Jean Donovan's life, from her affluent childhood in Connecticut, to her decision to volunteer with the Maryknolls in El Salvador, to her tragic death. This is the story of the four women missionaries who were murdered in El Salvador in December, 1980. Explores the circumstances surrounding the murders, what happened afterward, and the pervading political situation.
Leviathan. Lucien Castaing-Taylor, et al. (2013). Cinema Guild.
In this cinema verite work set entirely on a groundfish trawler out of New Bedford, Mass., the filmmakers have avoided the standard equipment of interviews, analysis and explanation. A product of the Sensory Ethnography Lab at Harvard, the film offers not information but immersion in wind, water, grinding machinery and piscine agony. The brutality of fishing, as opposed to its romance, is emphasized here. The experience is often unnerving and sometimes nauseating, because of the motions of the juddering, swaying hand-held camera and also because of the distended eyes, gasping mouths and mutilated flesh of the catch. Presented without dialogue, speech is drowned out by the roar of the elements and the screech and thump of engines and hydraulic winches.
We are the ... of communism. Zi'en Cui, et al. (2010). DGenerate Films.
When the Yuanhai Migrants Children's School is shut down by city officials for unclear reasons, the students and teachers manage to continue classes where they can find room. These students face both social and administrative prejudice due to their families' marginalized status and are typically relegated to makeshift schools for migrants, with poor facilities and sporadic shutdowns by local officials. This documentary follows the personal journeys of the students as they battle bureaucratic corruption for their right to learn.
Inhaling the spore: a journey through the Museum of Jurassic Technology. Leonard Feinstein, et al. (2004). Microcinema International distributor.
"Like the first museums of the 17th century, the fantastic array of exhibits at the Museum of Jurassic Technology suggests a modern-day 'cabinet of curiosities,' filled with juxtapositions of the genuine, the strange, and the truly unexplainable. As its founder, David Wilson reveals 'We like experiences that break the hard shell of certainty.' Inhaling the Spore explores how this remarkable museum inspires us to wonder at the marvels of man and nature...and wonder whether any of it could possibly be true."--Container.
A dedicated life. Kazuo Hara, et al. (2007). Facets Video.
Film about the life and last years of the novelist Inoue Mitsuharu; with the novelist himself and other contemperary authors appearing in the film.
Here lies my heart the fishing village of El Pardito Island = Aquí se queda mi corazón : el pueblito de pescadores en la isla El Pardito. Linn Harter, et al. (2010). Montaña Media.
"The beauty of Mexico's Sea of Cortez is brought to life as we explore the unique life of a small fishing village on El Pardito Island. Pepe Cuevas is a second generation fishermen who lives on the island with his son and daughter. Various generations describe their lives growing up on this remote island. A younger generation has left the island to form a popular ranchera band. Several of their lively songs serve as a backdrop to the beautiful images of the fishermen and their life on the sea. Pepe's funny and light-hearted nature warms the soul as he describes a life he loves, but his mood changes when he talks seriously about the problems of overfishing and a way of life that may be disappearing"--container.
The fall of womenland. Xiaodan He, et al. (2009). Cinema Guild.
A documentary on the unique sexual culture of the Mosuo people, a small minority situated in the southwest of China, and one of the last remaining matriarchal societies in the world. Without a formal marriage contract, the Mosuo traditionally build relationships based on free love and sexual satisfaction ("walking marriages"). But can the sexual liberty and power of the Mosuo women survive as modern Chinese society slowly encroaches their ancestral land? The film explores the present reality for the Mosuo people as well as the dangers that threaten their inherited way of life--Container.
The 3 rooms of melancholia. Pirjo Honkasalo, et al. (2004). Icarus Films.
Reveals the psychological devastation the Chechen conflict has inflicted on children. Focuses on three rooms: a military academy near St. Petersburg; Crozny, Chechnya where families struggle to survive in barely habitable buildings; and, the nearby republic of Ingushetia where refugee camps are set up. Using minimal dialogue and evocative music, the film depicts the emotional state of children affected by war.
Searching For Lin Zhao’s Soul. Jie Hu, et al. (2009). dGenerate Films.
Lin Zhao, a Christian and a student of Beijing University, grew from a pure, loyal follower into a valiant fighter against the Communists. She was imprisoned for eight years and then executed. She left thousands of words written in her own blood to expose the absurdity and cruelty of those days.
Though I am gone. Jie Hu, et al. (2007). dGenerate Films.
Bian Zhongyun, vice principal of a prestigious Beijing school, was tortured to death in 1966, believed to be the first victim among the teachers killed by their students during the "Red August" of 1966 as the Cultural Revolution began in Mainland China. The film, drawing on photographs taken by Bian's husband, Wang Jingyao, depicts the event and demonstrates how the family members, students and colleagues of Bian experienced the terror.
Disorder (Xian shi shi guo qu de wei lai). Weikai Huang, et al. (2009). dGenerate Films.
The film combines more than twenty street scenes by amateur videographers into a collage, revealing absurd facets of life in a fast-paced urban city.
The blood of Yingzhou District. Thomas Lennon, et al. (2007). Cinema Guild.
Examines the hidden AIDS epidemic in China through the eyes of infected children, orphaned after the deaths of their parents from the same disease.
Waiting for Harry. Kim McKenzie, et al. (2012). Royal Anthropological Institute.
The film is concerned with a burial ceremony carried out by the Anbarra people of the Blyth River near Maningrida, Arnhem Land. Frank's brother has died, and Frank wishes to bury him in the traditional manner. The ceremony continues for several weeks and is held up by the absence of Harry, uncle of the dead man, who must be present to ensure that the motifs on the coffin are appropriate.
Bethel: community and schizophrenia in northern Japan. Karen Nakamura, et al. (2010). Manic Productions.
For those who wonder about how schizophrenia and its patients are dealt with in different countries and cultures from medical and therapeutic points of view, this film is be a good start. Dr. Nakamura captures the corners of the medical treatment, therapeutic treatment, and the Japanese philosophy that touched them all. This documentary looks at Bethel House, founded in Hokkaido, Japan in 1984 to support people with psychiatric disabilities. Also shows the how the community setting and programs influence outcome and progress.
A Japanese funeral. Karen Nakamura, et al. (2010). Karen Nakamura.
"A young man dies unexpectedly at the age of 39. Over the next three days, we witness Japanese funeral rites with a twist - the man and his family are Christian."--Container.
Red persimmons: a record of people living with persimmons. Shinsuke Ogawa, et al. (2001). First Run/Icarus Films.
Using film footage and composition notes left by the late Ogawa Shinsuke, Chinese director Peng Xiaolian shot additional film and completed the work, which colorfully yet elegantly depicts the manufacturing process of the Kaminoyama red persimmon. The inhabitants of the tiny Japanese village of Kaminoyama explain that it is the perfect combination of earth, wind and rain that makes their village's persimmons superior to those grown anywhere else, including the village just a few miles away. Ogawa's larger subject, however, is to memorialize a very special part of Japanese culture and to share its beauty with us. It is a record of the ineluctable forces of modernization that are slowly bringing to an end Japan's traditional culture, the end of a centuries-old way of life.
S21 the Khmer Rouge killing machine. Panh Rithy, et al. (2003). First Run/Icarus Films : Human Rights Watch.
A survivor of the Khmer Rouge genocide in Cambodia confronts his captors at the notorious detention center codenamed S21, where 16,000 men, women, and children were tortured and killed, their "crimes" meticulously documented to justify their execution.
People of the Rice Paddies. Panh Rithy, et al. (2004). Blaq Out.
This is the story of Vong Poeuv, his wife Yim Om, and their seven daughters. It shows the life of an ordinary Cambodian rice-farmer and his family. When the father dies after being infected by a thorn, the family has an even harder life to face. They struggle to survive, yet life must continue.
Singapore GaGa. Tan Pin Pin, et al. (2006). Objectifs Films.
Singapore GaGa is a 55-minute video documentary on the sights and sounds of Singapore. It makes use of mass displays, such as the National Day Parade, school cheers and public announcements as well as performances by harmonica virtuoso Yew Hong Chow, avant garde pianist Margaret Leng Tan and itinerant buskers, to showcase Singaporeans' complex relationship with Singapore. The documentary touches on the desire to be heard, to be seen and to belong, both to Singapore and to the present.
Preschool in three cultures revisited Japan, China and the United States. Joseph Jay Tobin, et al. (2009). J.J. Tobin.
"This set of videos shows typical days in preschools in China, Japan, and the United States, with narration tracks that present explanations and reflections of early childhood educators from each country. There is also a short introduction, which explains the project's goals and method."--Container.
Includes revisits to the three schools featured in A Videotape companion to Preschool in three cultures (1989).
A videotape companion to Preschool in three cultures Japan, China and the United States. Joseph Jay Tobin, et al. (1989). Fourth Wave Productions.
Research footage from a typical day in preschools of three different cultures.
Round trip. Angela Torresan, et al. (1999). The University of Manchester, distributed by RAI.
"Portrait of a Brazilian woman and her friends, now living in Lisbon, exploring the basis of their sense of identity in the context of a transnational way of life."--Container.
Crossing borders. Arnd Wächter, et al. (2010). Crossing Borders Films Ltd.
"Crossing Borders is a feature documentary that follows four Moroccan and four American university students as they travel together through Morocco and, in the process of discovering "The Other," discover themselves. With group travels and frank discussions, the students confront the complex implications of the supposed "clash of civilizations" between Islam and the West. The relationships formed through shared experiences contrast sharply with the media-shaped views Americans and Muslims have of each other. Humor, honesty and a willingness to be challenged all bring individuals closer to each other and the relationships that develop disarm hidden stereotypes"--Container.
Miss Gulag. Maria Yatskova, et al. (2010). Women Make Movies.
Follows three female prisoners in Siberian prison UF91-9, preparing to compete in a beauty pageant. Through the pageant emerges a complex narrative of the lives of the first generation of women to come of age in post-Soviet Russia. Miss Gulag explores the individual destinies of three women: Yulia, Tatiana, and Natasha, all bound together by long prison sentences and circumstances that have made them the vigilantes of their own destinies.
My father's house. Dayong Zhao, et al. (2011). dGenerate Films.
"In Nigeria, Pastor Daniel Michael Enyeribe has a revelation to bring the word of God to China. He joins a booming community of African merchants who have settled in the southern city of Guangzhou and established the Royal Victory Church for both Africans and Chinese to worship. The church functions as the spiritual center for the ever-growing African trader community, who struggle with cultural, personal and financial challenges. After being raised by police enforcing strict laws regulating religious practice, Pastor Daniel flees to Hong Kong, where he uses video conferencing to lead his congregation from afar. His colleague Pastor Ignatius assumes daily management of the church, while struggling to support his Chinese wife and their young child."--Container.
A Balinese trance seance and Jero on Jero, a Balinese trance seance observed. Linda Connor, et al. (2007). Documentary Educational Resources.
In a Balinese trance seance, Jero Tapakan, a spirit medium in a small, central Balinese village, consults with a group of clients in her shrine house. Filmed in 1978.
In Jero on Jero, anthropologist Linda Connor and filmmakers Tim and Patsy Ash return to Bali and present Jero with a videorecording of the previous film and elicit comments from her about the film and her views on the causes and treatments of disease.
Celso and Cora. Gary Kildea, et al. (2011). Icarus Films.
Focuses on a family in a squatter settlement in the Philippine capital of Manila to depict Third World poverty.
The women's olamal the organisation of a Maasai fertility ceremony. Melissa Llewelyn-Davies, et al. (2005). Documentary Educational Resources.
Discusses a fertility ceremony of the Maasai women in Africa.
Tempus de baristas. David MacDougall, et al. (1997). Berkeley Media [distributor.
Tempus de baristas (Time of the barmen) profiles three goatherders in the mountains of eastern Sardinia and explores a traditional way of life that is rapidly disappearing. The subjects of this film include 17-year-old Pietro, his 62-year-old father, Franchiscu, and their friend, Miminu.
Imagining Indians. Victor Masayesva, et al. (2007). Documentary Educational Resources.
Using an eclectic mix of interviews, staged scenes and graphic imagery, this film represents a Native American's view of the disparity between self-perception and the white culture's principally Hollywood-inspired interpretations of American Indians.
Trance and dance in Bali. Margaret Mead, et al. (2005). Penn State Media Sales.
Explores the themes of trance and dance in the rituals and religion of Bali through a form of the kris dance, a Balinese ceremonial dance drama in which the struggle between the witch and the dragon is played out to the accompaniment of comic interludes and violent trance seizures. Filmed at the village of Pagoetan, 1937-39.
Childhood rivalry in Bali and New Guinea. Margaret Mead, et al. (2006). Pennsylvania State University Media Sales.
A series of scenes comparing the responses of Balinese and Iatmul children of the same age to the mother's attending to another baby, to the ear piercing of a younger sibling, and to the experimental presentation of a doll.
Nice coloured girls. Tracey Moffatt, et al. (2009). Women Make Movies.
In this film excerpts from 16th century sailor's journals concerning sexual exploitation of native Australian women are transposed over current day scenes of prostitution trade among aboriginal native women.
Night cries: a rural tragedy. Tracey Moffatt, et al. (2007). Women Make Movies.
A fictional story in which a middle-aged Aboriginal woman resents the responsibility of caring for her old white mother. Her memories and dreams invade her routine until the old woman's mortality fuels the daughter's guilt and loss. Filmed entirely in a studio, with vibrantly colored sets and extremely creative use of ambient sound.
The good woman of Bangkok. Dennis O'Rourke, et al. (2009). Camerawork.
An intimate portrait of a reluctant Thai prostitute. She shares details of life as a prostitute and her innermost thoughts and disillusionment. Documents the relationship between Aoi and the filmmaker.