Daily Archives: October 1, 2012

The Lottery of Birth by Raoul Martinez, Joshua van Praag (2012) #rdff

Another document at this year’s Raindance.

Touching upon the subjects of choice in our everyday lives. Illustrated on the striking example of professor Milgram’s experiments at Yale university in 1960’s, where consistently 65% of participants of diverse backgrounds do not hesitate to blindly follow the rules deadly injuring other participants of the experiment (unaware that the subjects of the experiment are hired actors).

The main message of this picture filled with talking heads – amongst whom are experts in diverse fields – economy, sociology, history, seems to be – act, don’t be the idle watcher. Quite a challenge in the contemporary world when we have gradually become indifferent to social inequalities and injustice in general.

Too drastic at times – I understand this is for audiences who have no idea Holocaust ever happened but I would be satisfied with numbers/statistics rather than gory images from concentration camps, of piles of dead bodies and starving children.

Although the purpose of this film is righteous – it seemed a bit too blunt and too claustrophobic.

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Sunset Strip by Hans Fjellestad (2012) #rdff

Sunset Boulevard is probably one of the most famous street names in Los Angeles. It is 1.5 mile long and the authors of this heartful documentary have put a visible effort into recreating its  history throughout the 20th century.

The Sunset Strip is presented gradually through archival material of non-existent today clubs, joints and meeting points. We witness personae such as Keanu Reeves, Johnny Depp, Sharon Stone, Sophia Coppola, the Osbourne family. They are usually talked about in documentaries, whereas here they are the narrators sharing their side of the story experienced in this strip of land.

Quite successfully the viewers get delivered a crafty cut of interviews, of archival footage all summed up by a juicy animation.

A great journey enabling those not lucky enough to be located in LA, California, to appreciate and visit the famous places.

Probably one of the strongest points of this film is that no-one is put in the position of an omniscient narrator, but rather all the participants learn about the history of the boulevard from each other – in arranged conversations.

Good one! Thanks Raindance!

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