Country Life: Docs Featuring Rural Missouri

Posted on Wednesday, June 26, 2019 by Dewey Decimal Diver

If you primarily have lived in Missouri cities, you might not be that familiar with your rural neighbors. While not all people in rural areas are the same, the documentaries below might help introduce you to a few of the folks you might encounter in the country. Check out these documentaries that take a look at residents in rural Missouri:

Stray Dog” (2014)

The film follows Ron “Stray Dog” Hall as he caravans on his Harley with fellow vets to pay tribute to their fallen brothers at the Vietnam Memorial. Meanwhile, back home in southern Missouri where he owns and operates an RV Park populated by a community on the margins, he forges a new life of domesticity with his Mexican wife Alicia. Continue reading “Country Life: Docs Featuring Rural Missouri”

Tricks Of The Trade: Docs about Artist Tricksters

Posted on Wednesday, May 22, 2019 by Dewey Decimal Diver

Scene from “Art and Craft”

Some artists use their work as a springboard for playing tricks on their audience. These artists might have varying motivations, but their shenanigans can offer insight into the nature of art and the human condition itself. Check out these docs about artist trickers:

Art and Craft” (2014)

It follows the story of Mark Landis, one of the most prolific art forgers in U.S. history. His impressive body of work spans thirty years, covering a wide range of painting styles and periods. Posing as a philanthropic donor, Landis has given away hundreds of works over the years to a staggering list of institutions across the United States. Continue reading “Tricks Of The Trade: Docs about Artist Tricksters”

Shot in the Dark: Docs That Were Filmed at Night

Posted on Wednesday, April 24, 2019 by Dewey Decimal Diver

Filming at night has always been problematic for directors since cameras capture scenes best in the daytime with ample light. In spite of this some directors have excelled at filming night settings, using various techniques and equipment to overcome the limitations of darkness. Check out these docs that were primarily filmed at night:

Tchoupitoulas DVD coverTchoupitoulas” (2013)

In this lyrical portrait, three adolescent brothers take us on a lively journey through one immersive night in New Orleans, encountering a vibrant kaleidoscope of dancers, musicians, hustlers, and revelers. The filmmakers fully immerse us into the New Orleans night, introducing us to the people who make the city their home. Continue reading “Shot in the Dark: Docs That Were Filmed at Night”

Growing Up on the Spectrum: Docs Featuring Kids With Autism

Posted on Wednesday, January 23, 2019 by Dewey Decimal Diver

Growing up can be challenging, and it can be tougher if you have to deal with autism. Seeing how others on the spectrum deal with triumphs and tribulations can help build confidence for both kids and their families. Check out these docs featuring kids with autism.

The Horse Boy dvd CoverThe Horse Boy” (2010)

When 2-year-old Rowan was diagnosed with autism, Rupert Isaacson and his wife Kristin sought the best possible medical care, but traditional therapies had little effect. They discovered that Rowan has a profound affinity for animals, particularly horses, and the family set off on a quest that would change their lives forever. Continue reading “Growing Up on the Spectrum: Docs Featuring Kids With Autism”

Imitation Game: Docs That Inspired Feature Films

Posted on Wednesday, December 26, 2018 by Dewey Decimal Diver

Anerican Family image
The Loud family from the documentary “An American Family” (left) and actors portraying the Loud family in “Cinema Verite” (right).

Some documentaries are so compelling that you don’t want them to end. Fictional films can expand upon a documentary in unique and surprising ways, including scenes and people that didn’t make it into the original. Check out these docs that have inspired feature films:

An American Family dvd coverAn American Family” (1973)

First debuting in 1973 over twelve episodes, viewers were introduced to the William C. Loud family and the dramatic life events that unfolded during seven months of documentary shooting. This DVD edition is a two hour compilation of the series’ best moments. The documentary series inspired the fictional film “Cinema Verite” released in 2011. Continue reading “Imitation Game: Docs That Inspired Feature Films”

Ice Bucket List: Docs Featuring Subjects With ALS

Posted on Wednesday, November 28, 2018 by Dewey Decimal Diver

photo of Gleason and young boy

The neurodegenerative disease Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, more commonly known as ALS, has gotten a lot of public attention ever since the Ice Bucket Challenge gained internet fame in 2014. In the wake of this newfound interest, several ALS-related documentaries have been released which explore the impact of this disease on individuals and families. Check out these documentaries featuring subjects with ALS.

Gleason dvd coverGleason” (2016)

At the age of 34, Steve Gleason, former NFL defensive back and New Orleans hero, was diagnosed with ALS. Doctors gave him two to five years to live. So that is what Steve chose to do: live. This film incorporates personal video journals from Gleason for his then-unborn son to footage of his adventures undertaken as part of his mission to live his life to the fullest. Continue reading “Ice Bucket List: Docs Featuring Subjects With ALS”

Leaving Early: Docs About Suicide

Posted on Wednesday, September 26, 2018 by Dewey Decimal Diver

image from The Departure documentary

September is National Suicide Prevention Month. Documentaries on the subject can give perspective to not only those contemplating suicide, but friends, family, and caregivers as well. Check out these documentaries about suicide.

The Departure dvd coverThe Departure” (2017)

A former punk-turned-Buddhist-priest in Japan has made a career out of helping suicidal people find reasons to live. But this work has come increasingly at the cost of his own family and health. This film captures him at a crossroads, leading him to confront the same question his patients ask him: what makes life worth living?

Kate Plays Christine DVD coverKate Plays Christine” (2016)

A gripping, nonfiction psychological thriller, Robert Greene’s film follows actress Kate Lyn Sheil as she prepares for her next role: playing Christine Chubbuck, a Florida newscaster who committed suicide live on-air in 1974. As Kate investigates Chubbuck’s story uncovering new clues and information, she becomes increasingly obsessed with her subject.

Ho to Die in Oregon DVD coverHow To Die In Oregon” (2012)

In 1994, Oregon became the first state to legalize physician-assisted suicide. As a result, any individual whom two physicians diagnose as having less than six months to live can lawfully request a fatal dose of barbiturate to end his or her life. This film gently enters the lives of the terminally ill as they consider whether, and when, to end their lives by lethal overdose.