Tag Archives | Documentary

Pirate Radio Cranks Up the Volume for Documentary

Pirate Radio USAVia Joe Nolan's Insomnia: Hello friends. This weekend I discovered an entertaining and eye-opening pirate radio documentary online: Pirate Radio USA. Given the post-Clinton legalization of media monopolies, the subject of pirate radio has once again become a hot-button topic. Pirate radio broadcasters use homemade technologies to take over radio frequencies, broadcasting without licenses, outside of FCC rules and regulations. Pirate radio has become a form of civil disobedience. The various subjects of the documentary fight directly against the corporate media by simply "stealing" FM bandwidth to broadcast their radical, rocking messages. Of course, the irony is that the airwaves above the United States are owned exclusively by the public. How can you steal what you already own?
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Joy Division Documentary Now Online

Last night I discovered a documentary about the band Joy Division. In a recent post about the post-punk chronicle Totally Wired, I mentioned the films 24-Hour Party People and Control. Both movies cover the rise and fall of Joy Division and their troubled leader Ian Curtis. While both films have their virtues, it seems the strange tale of Joy Division is best met head on, and this exhaustive doc does the trick. (Joy Division cover the Velvet Underground's "Sister Ray".)
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My Trip to Al-Qaeda: Q & A with Journalist Lawrence Wright

I didn't see the theatrical adaption of Lawrence Wright's The Looming Tower (which is the most informative book I have ever read about 9/11) so I am looking forward to checking about this documentary. From the Economist's Prospero column:
Lawrence Wright spent five years conducting hundreds of interviews in at least ten countries in order to write “The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to 9/11”. The book, a best-selling history about Islamic fundamentalism, weaves the stories of terrorists, intelligence officers and government officials in a remarkable narrative that helps to explain both the cult of Osama bin Laden and the flaws in American intelligence that let him get away with murder. “When I finished my book,” Mr Wright said in an interview with Prospero, “I had countless people asking me ‘What were they like?’ and ‘How did it affect you?’” He ultimately answered these questions in his one-man play, “My Trip to al-Qaeda”, a gripping personal account of the people he met and what it all felt like. On September 7th HBO will premiere Alex Gibney’s elegant screen adaptation, which mixes theatrical footage with more photographs and videos to help tell Mr Wright’s story about the lure of radicalism in the Islamic world.
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Psywar: The Real Battlefield is the Mind (Video)

Via American Pendulum:
Psywar: The Real Battlefield is the Mind explores the evolution of propaganda and public relations in the United States, with an emphasis on the “elitist theory of democracy” and the relationship between war, propaganda and class.
Includes original interviews with a number of dissident scholars including Noam Chomsky, Howard Zinn, Michael Parenti, Peter Phillips (“Project Censored”), John Stauber (“PR Watch”), Christopher Simpson (“The Science of Coercion”).
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No “Home Sweet Home” Five Years After Katrina

Matt Pascarella and I encountered Patricia Thomas while she was breaking into a home at the Lafitte Housing Project in New Orleans. It was her own home. Nevertheless, if caught, she'd end up in the slammer. So would we. Matt was my producer for the film, Big Easy to Big Empty, and he encouraged my worst habits. I'd worked for the New Orleans Housing Authority years back and knew they wanted the poor black folk out of these pretty townhouses near the French Quarter. Katrina was an excuse for ethnic cleansing, American style. Matt and I skipped cuffs on this shoot, but were charged later by Homeland Security (see below). While I recorded the story of hidden evils on film, Matt gathered a story which no camera can capture. Here it is. — Greg Palast
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Before There Was Oil, There Was Water: Harry Shearer’s ‘The Big Uneasy’ (Video)

The Big UneasyHere's Harry Shearer (of Spinal Tap and Simpsons fame) being interviewed by Michael Smerconish about his new documentary The Big Uneasy on Hardball with Chris Matthews below. Here's a bit about the documentary:
Almost five years ago, a disaster struck New Orleans. The media said it was a natural disaster primarily affecting poor black people. On both counts, the media was wrong. In The Big Uneasy, humorist and New Orleans resident Harry Shearer gets the inside story of a disaster that could have been prevented from the people who were there. As we approach the fifth anniversary of the flooding of New Orleans, Shearer speaks to the investigators who poked through the muck as the water receded and a whistleblower from the Army Corps of Engineers, revealing that some of the same flawed methods responsible for the levee failure during Katrina are being used to rebuild the system expected to protect the new New Orleans from future peril.
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One Nation, Overweight

A serious look at a serious problem – the ever-expanding numbers of Americans who are overweight and obese – arrives on cable TV this evening with CNBC’s documentary One Nation, Overweight. It receives a serious review from Alessandra Stanley in the New York Times, below. (For an alternative, but equally serious, documentary on the topic, disinformation also recommends Killer At Large: Why Obesity Is America’s Greatest Threat.)

There are two Americas.

One is a ruling minority of the healthy few who rely on vegetable gardens, personal trainers and spa getaways to stay fit. The other is the majority of Americans, who are overweight or obese, many of whom risk their own form of assisted living — XXXL clothes, mobility scooters and diabetes treatments that can tip over $50,000 a year.

One Nation Overweight (CNBC)

One Nation Overweight (CNBC)

“One Nation, Overweight” is a CNBC documentary on Tuesday that provides a chilling portrait of a health epidemic that endangers all Americans — without being overly alarmist or too sanguine.

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Ray Kurzweil’s Singularity Movie Crashes A Computer

A funny thing happened when they tried to screen The Singularity is Near. After the lights went down, a computer crash prevented the movie from starting! “Ray Kurzweil got back on stage…and good-naturedly reassured us that the technology was getting better. A couple of minutes later, the movie started…”

singularity

The new documentary is a clear rendition of the ideas in Kurzweil’s book, including nanotechnology and artificial intelligence, “with Bill McKibben in the role of the friendly flat out opponent, Bill Joy playing the reasonable but worried man, and Mitch Kapor doubting the technological possibilities… K. Eric Drexler, MIT roboticist Cynthia Breazeal, desktop manufacturing guru Neil Gershenfeld and many many more are woven in to support the idea – and the more hopeful potentials – of accelerating change leading to radical alterations in life (itself).”

The movie includes a second fictional narrative showing the future, “and – one of them, at least – is rather affecting.” And there’s also allusions to Fringe, The Matrix, and “lots of very groovy, trippy, and playful graphics.”

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Join Us for the Premiere of Danny Schechter’s ‘Plunder’

If you're in the New York metro area for this event (details below), join us by RSVPing to plunder [at] disinfo.com. Otherwise, please help us spread the word on Danny Schechter's new film, Plunder: The Crime of our Time, now available on iTunes and DVD.

Aldon O. James, Jr., The President of The National Arts Club, Globalvision Inc. and The Disinformation Company cordially invite

You and a Guest To The Premiere Screening Of Danny Schechter's New Investigative Film Exposing the Financial Crisis as A Crime Story

PLUNDER: THE CRIME OF OUR TIME (APRIL 29, 2010)

In March of this year, a national poll found that despite all the partisan political polarization, 82% of the American people want a "crackdown on Wall Street." Yet to date, a handful of white collar criminals have been prosecuted and jailed for causing the worst financial crisis since The Great Depression. The film, Plunder: The Crime of our Time is being released in April by The Disinformation Company and will be available on cable systems' Video-On-Demand, on DVD and via iTunes. It is the first documentary feature to treat the financial crisis as a crime story. The hard-hitting film features testimony by Wall Street bankers, economists, a convicted white collar criminal, real estate brokers and victims of mortgage scams. It explains how an estimated $197 trillion disappeared because of elaborate and sophisticated financial frauds. Plunder also indicts the media for not warning us or investigating the crisis in a timely way.
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