DocEdge 2011: The People vs. George Lucas

The People vs. George Lucas USA / UK | 2010 | Dir. Alexandre O. Phillipe | English | 93 mins. A would-be thesis on the cult of Star Wars, Alexandre O. Phillipe’s 93-minute exploration of the boundaries of fandom feels, for its first half hour, like an extended trailer—but, happily, it eventually congeals into something like an actual film. The documentary is mix of interviews—both … Continue reading DocEdge 2011: The People vs. George Lucas

DocEdge 2011: David Wants to Fly

David Wants to Fly Austria/Germany/Switzerland | 2010 | Dir. David Sieveking | German, English & Hindi | 96 mins. In 2006, David Lynch wrote a book, Catching the Big Fish: Meditation, Consciousness and Creativity, about the artistic benefits that can be reaped from a practice he has been engaged in since 1973: Transcendental Meditation (TM). In this feature-length exposé, David Sieveking, a German amateur filmmaker … Continue reading DocEdge 2011: David Wants to Fly

DocEdge 2011: American Radical: the Trials of Norman Finkelstein

American Radical: the Trials of Norman Finkelstein USA | 2009 | Dir. David Ridgen & Nicolas Rossier | English & Hebrew | 84 mins. Norman Finkelstein is an American academic who has published seven books, held teaching positions and been awarded professorships at numerous universities (including NYU and Rutgers University), and given lectures in the US and around the world. He’s also a strident polemicist … Continue reading DocEdge 2011: American Radical: the Trials of Norman Finkelstein

DocEdge 2011: Erasing David

Erasing David UK | 2009 | Dir. David Bond, Melinda McDougall | English |80 mins. The UK is one of the most invasive surveillance states in the world—it is third only to China and Russia in terms of monitoring its populace. There are over four million closed-circuit television cameras in the UK, and one million in the city of London alone—meaning there are more cameras … Continue reading DocEdge 2011: Erasing David

DocEdge 2011: “Hey, Boo!”: Harper Lee and To Kill a Mockingbird

“Hey, Boo!”: Harper Lee and To Kill a Mockingbird USA | 2010 | Dir. Mary Murphy | English | 78 mins. That this film intentionally opens with silly overstatement from talk show behemoth Oprah—on how “if there was a National Novel Award, this would [win] it for the United States”—should signal both its tone and perhaps also its professionalism. Unfortunately, only the first of these … Continue reading DocEdge 2011: “Hey, Boo!”: Harper Lee and To Kill a Mockingbird

DocEdge 2011: Machete Maidens Unleashed!

Machete Maidens Unleashed! Australia | 2010 | Dir. Mark Hartley | English | 84 mins. Australian filmmaker Mark Hartley now does for the Philippines what he did for ‘Ozploitation’ in 2008’s Not Quite Hollywood. Machete Maidens Unleashed! looks at the short-lived American–Filipino B-movie industry that thrived from the late-’60s to the early ’80s. At its peak, the industry would grind out “drive-in filler from Manila” … Continue reading DocEdge 2011: Machete Maidens Unleashed!

DocEdge 2011: Into Eternity

Into Eternity Denmark/Finland | 2010 | Dir. Michael Madsen | English | 75 mins. Eerily, powerfully atmospheric, this film about the construction of a mammoth bunker designed to contain nuclear waste from Finland is as chilling in its presentation of real facts as a great horror movie. It’s also quietly philosophical, ruminating at one point on Rumsfeldian “unknown unknowns,” and the like. Interviews with leading … Continue reading DocEdge 2011: Into Eternity

DocEdge 2011: My Perestroika

My Perestroika USA/UK | 2010 | Dir. Robin Hessman | Russian | 88 mins. “Perestroika,” in its traditional political sense, refers to the programme of (economic) restructuring in the former Soviet Union under Mikhail Gorbachev which began in 1989. Followed by “Glasnost” (“openness”) and other reforms, Perestroika signalled, among other changes, the fall of the former Soviet Union and the end of the Cold War. … Continue reading DocEdge 2011: My Perestroika

Documentary Edge Festival 2011

The sixth annual Documentary Edge Festival begins tonight in Auckland and runs until March 6th before moving on to Wellington. 64 films from New Zealand and around the world will screen at Event Cinemas in Newmarket, with ‘satellite’ screenings at the Academy Cinemas and the Victoria Picture Palace in Devonport. The festival’s flagship films are its special presentations: Spike Lee’s followup to When the Levees … Continue reading Documentary Edge Festival 2011