Tag Archives | Documentary

Crop Circles In New York City

What On Earth Inside The Crop Circle MysteryThe best crop circle documentary yet, Suzanne Taylor’s What On Earth? has landed in New York with special screenings all week at Manhattan’s Quad Cinema (Wednesday April 27th’s evening screening features Suzanne, Alex and Allyson Grey and Daniel Pinchbeck, moderated by disinformation‘s Gary Baddeley).

The New York Times just reviewed the film, calling it:

A cheery, chummy documentary about the pastoral patterns inaccurately described as crop circles…

… Merging homey interviews with photographs and film of the hundreds of varieties of patterns (which pop up mysteriously overnight and are found all over the world), the film makes no pretense of objectivity or analysis. Everyone on screen — most sporting little blue flowers in their lapels, like a club insignia — is convinced of an intelligence behind the designs.

The film’s main attractions, though, are the patterns themselves: fantastically precise whorls and curlicues, radiolaria and mandalas that drift across the screen like the endlessly reforming crystals in a kaleidoscope.

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‘First Orbit’ Celebrates Today’s 50th Anniversary Of Man In Space

Move over PBS: YouTube/Google funded this very cool and very free movie about the beginning of spaceflight, with today being exactly 50 years since Yuri Gagarin became the first man in space. You can download the movie or watch it on YouTube. From the official First Orbit site:
April 12th 1961 – Yuri Gagarin is about to see what no other person has seen in the history of humanity – the Earth from space...
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2 To 3 Minutes In Hell: Cleaning Chernobyl

A gripping, short documentary video of the horrifying challenge confronting the Soviet Union's "biorobots" -- soldiers, scientists, and civilians who were tasked with the emergency cleanup following the explosions at Chernobyl. Radio-controlled robotic machines were used at first, but their circuitry broke down from the radiation, leaving humans with shovels as the only option.
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How To Start Your Own Religion

One of the best films I saw at South By Southwest (SXSW) this year was Vikram Gandhi's documentary Kumaré, in which New Jersey-born and raised Gandhi decides to pass himself off as an Indian guru (he is of Indian descent) to see if people will buy into his fake persona as a spiritually enlightened teacher. He succeeds all too well and faces a dilemma when it's time to reveal the fraud. Essentially Gandhi's point is that spiritual gurus are frauds and anyone can be a guru if he can (so long as they are prepared to dress up, grow long beards, make up strange chants, etc.). With that in mind, I found a course on how to start your own religion, offered by 3rd Ward. I'm not sure if I'll take it yet, but they do say the fastest way to make a million dollars is to become a millionaire...
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Is Competitive Laughter Becoming A New Craze?

LaughologyThe documentary Laughology is helping set off a new fad with the discovery that competitive laughter can be entertaining.

The film makes the case that laughter itself is the primary motivator of laughter, so jokes aren’t necessary for people to have a good time. After a laughing contest in Montreal where the audience was in stitches, a competition made headlines in Tokyo. This Saturday a laughter contest hits America in the form of the California Ultimate Laughing Championship. Linda Massarella reports for the Toronto Sun:

So there was this American state called California with one of the highest unemployment rates on the continent and citizens fretting about losing their homes to foreclosure … when in walks this Canadian guy.

Yes, it’s Toronto documentary filmmaker Albert Nerenberg to the rescue of the depressed and anxious around here [San Luis Obispo, CA] next Saturday when he brings his movie, Laughology, to a film festival just north of L.A.

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Bigfoot Sues State

From the "You can't make this stuff up" department, via AP/Seacoastonline:
CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — First there was a Bigfoot sighting. Now, there's a Bigfoot suing. A performance artist and amateur filmmaker who dressed as the mythical beast says New Hampshire park rangers didn't have the right to kick him off a mountain where he had been scaring, or at least amusing, hikers while friends videotaped his antics.
Backed by the American Civil Liberties Union, Jonathan Doyle is suing the state...
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