Magazine article Variety

Documentaries in the Mix

Magazine article Variety

Documentaries in the Mix

Article excerpt

Abacus: Small Enough to Jail

Steve James

"Hoop Dreams" and "Life Itself" helmer James directed this Toronto debut about Manhattan's tiny, family-owned Abacas Federal Savings Bank, which bizarrely became the only financial institution to be charged with crimes after the mortgage crisis.

Arthur Miller: Writer

Rebecca Miller

This Telluride premiere offered an understandably intimate snapshot of the "Death of a Salesman" playwright, given that it was directed by his daughter, Rebecca.

The B-Side: Elsa Dorfman's Portrait Photography 1

Errol Morris

While he's best known for tackling subjects like Robert McNamara and Donald Rumsfeld, Morris showed offa sensitive side with this warm portrait of his friend, artist Elsa Dorfman.

Bending the Arc

Kief Davidson and Pedro Kos

Filmmakers Davidson and Kos follow the Partners in Health philanthropic group as it treats HIV patients in Haiti and Rwanda.

California Typewriter 1

Doug Nichol

Nichol's playful documentary takes a look at the nostalgic appeal of the manual typewriter in the iPhone age, with commentary from such latter-day adherents as Tom Hanks and John Mayer.

Chasing Coral 2


A follow-up to his environmentalist treatise "Chasing Ice," Orlowski's "Chasing Corral" utilized expert camerawork to document the alarming loss of coral reefs.

City of Ghosts

Matthew Heineman

Acclaimed and acquired at Sundance, Heineman's follow-up to his Oscarnominated "Cartel Land" offers a shockingly up-close look at Raqqa Is Being Slaughtered Silently, a group of Syrian citizen journalists covering the civil war.

Cries From Syria

Evgeny Afineevsky

Just after shooting the Oscar nominated "Winter on Fire: Ukraine's Fight for Freedom," Russian documentarian Afineevsky turned his sights to an even more brutal struggle with this Syrian civil war documentary for HBO.

Dawson City: Frozen Time

Bill Morrison

Acclaimed experimental filmmaker Morrison may usually be a bit too outre for the Academy, but his work here tells a remarkable story of film history, drawing on the cache of early silent films that were discovered buried in a remote Yukon prospecting town.


Luke Korem

Korem's SXSW-winning documentary looks at the life and career of Richard Turner, who managed to become one of the world's most renowned card magicians despite being totally blind.


Dan Sickles and Antonio Santini

The winner of Sundance's grand jury documentary prize, Sickles and Santini's film documents the romance between two adults on the autism spectrum.

11/8/16 3

JeffDeutchman (producer)

It's a date that is still quite fresh in the minds of most Americans, but Deutchman's survey of last year's election tries to look beyond the headlines as he follows several ordinary people absorbing the whole, shocking day.

Ex Libris - The New York Public Library

Frederick Wiseman

Perhaps the most venerated living documentarian, 87-year-old Wiseman offers one of his most quietly stirring works in years with this typically astute observational film, more than three hours in length, about the New York Public Library.

Faces Places

Agnes Varda and JR

French cinema's grand dame Varda continued to charm audiences at Cannes, where her travelog across rural France with artist and co-director JR won the festival's Golden Eye award.

The Final Year

Greg Barker

While other filmmakers were leftto ponder the changes wrought by the Trump administration, Greg Barker's documentary offered a behind-closed-doors look at his predecessor's, following along as Obama's foreign policy team travelled to wartorn hot spots and prepared to leave office.

Gaga: Five Foot Two

Chris Moukarbel

Music docs have been unusually successful during recent Oscar ceremonies, with "Amy" and "Searching for Sugar Man" both picking up statuettes. …

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