Documentary Film Reviews, Making Documentaries, and Nonfiction Storytelling

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Vivian Maier Street Photographer, The Vivian Maier Mystery, Finding Vivian Maier and A Photographer Found -- Review by Jim Martin

Posted by on Nov 15, 2015 in Documentary, Documentary Film Reviews, Making Documentaries | 0 comments

Vivian Maier was born on February 1, 1926 in New York City. Around the age of 25 or 26 she started taking photographs, about 100,000 or more pictures by the time she died on April 21, 2009, ninety-nine percent of which she never showed anyone. She worked as a Nanny and/or Housekeeper most of her life using her spare time to photograph in New York City, Chicago, a village in France, and on an eight-month world tour accompanied by her trusted twin-lens Rolliflex camera hanging from her neck. Her work was discovered two years before she died but she was unaware of it. It included documentary style photography, 8mm film and audio recordings.

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American Experience: Walt Disney — Review by Jim Martin

Posted by on Oct 26, 2015 in Documentary, Documentary Film Reviews, Making Documentaries, REVIEWS | 0 comments

PBS - American Experience: Walt Disney documentary provides an uncensored, well researched, exploration of Walt Disney, the man, his work, and his passion for achieving goals. The 221 mintute documentary looks into Walt Disney’s contributions to the art of film, his strengths and weaknesses. The film examines his great insight into American culture and at other times his opaque insensitivity to historical, political and social issues facing Americans. Walt Disney was an artist and an entrepreneur, greatly aided in his goals by Roy Disney, his brother who complemented Walt’s obsessive personality with a practical nuance. American Experience: Walt Disney informs and entertains. It is a great biography of Disney and the development of animated feature films.

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Posted by on Sep 24, 2015 in Documentary, Documentary Film Reviews, Making Documentaries | 0 comments

“…the Constitution, baseball and jazz music. They're the three most beautiful things Americans have ever created." – Gerald Early Jazz is one of Ken Burns’ best documentary films. Like most of his work it transcends being a historical record of facts. Burns put the facts into historical context. Jazz, the documentary, fits the evolution of this music with American culture, Black History, individuals and politics of the United States. The history of Jazz, it turns out, is born out of circumstances uniquely American to a large extent, in New Orleans of the 1890’s. Jazz -- “It is a creation of the African American community there, but incorporates all kind of music heard in the streets of what was the country’s most cosmopolitan city.” Jazz soon moves out of New Orleans and becomes a national passion.

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Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief

Posted by on Aug 6, 2015 in Documentary, Documentary Film Reviews, Making Documentaries, REVIEWS | 0 comments

The Going Clear documentary is based on a book written by Lawrence Wright, titled Going Clear: “Scientology, Hollywood and the Prison of Belief. The Going Clear documentary is a pretty straightforward expose style piece that mainly goes after the management of the International Association of Scientology (IAS) and the Church of Scientology. In particular it singles out David Miscovige, a self-appointed protégé of L. Ron Hubbard (LRH) and current Chairman of the Board, as a megalomaniac and serial abuser of staff. Going Clear also questions and explores the not-for-profit, religious status of this Billion-dollar corporation.

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Making A Short Documentary by Jim Martin

Posted by on Mar 28, 2015 in Director, Documentary, Making Documentaries, News | 0 comments

Making a short documentary is no different than making a long documentary. But there are many unique factors involved in a short form documentary or fiction film that need to be considered. For starters it’s easy to make a “long” documentary that will put people to sleep after the first minutes. Making a three-minute or seven-minute documentary presents a number of issues that involve knowing what you want to do. Preproduction planning is essential.

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Posted by on Mar 21, 2015 in Baldwin Park, Baldwin Park - Production, News | 0 comments

Doggie Day Derby 2015 in Baldwin Park Florida is an annual event for dogs and people that brings out the community for a day of racing for non-profit causes. It appears to be a fun day for all concerned.

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Posted by on Mar 3, 2015 in Documentary, Documentary Film Reviews, Making Documentaries | 0 comments

VIRUNGA POSTERNominated for an Oscar in the Best Feature Length Documentary category 2015, Virunga, a Netflix movie, is a story that takes the viewer into the chaos of the war-torn Eastern Congo and Virunga National Park in the Congo, where dedicated Park Rangers struggle to protect the last of the Mountain Gorillas and preserve the park and its residents.

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