The following is a short review of Game of Thrones: The Last Watch — Directed by Jeanie Finlay.
Jeanie Finlay’s Game of Thrones: The Last Watch is a feature-length documentary released on HBO a week after the series finale of Game of Thrones aired. Though it does show us the last scenes that several pivotal actors appeared in, the documentary is less interested in the cast and creators than you may have thought. Game of Thrones: The Last Watch is, on the other hand, really a documentary about the unsung heroes of the show. These include production designers, extras, and even those who operated the food truck next to the set. Continue reading “REVIEW: Game of Thrones: The Last Watch (2019 – Documentary)”→
The following is a short review of God of War: Raising Kratos — Directed by Brandon Akiaten.
Brandon Akiaten’s God of War: Raising Kratos is a documentary about the making of the 2018 version of God of War, which is arguably one of the best games of the decade. Dubbed a masterpiece by plenty of video game critics and netting a 94 Metacritic-score, God of War was a critical hit and, later, a fan-favorite. It won new fans and it pleased old ones, and it made the developing studio into a reinvigorated and much more cherished studio than it had ever been before. But the journey to get there was arduous as revealed by Akiaten’s feature-length documentary, which has been released on YouTube by Sony PlayStation. Continue reading “REVIEW: God of War: Raising Kratos (2019 – Documentary)”→
The following is a short review of the HBO documentary At the Heart of Gold: Inside the USA Gymnastics Scandal — Directed by Erin Lee Carr.
From the mid-to-late-1990s to the mid-2010s, Dr. Larry Nassar — a husband, and father of three children — worked for USA Gymnastics and Michigan State University as a national team doctor and physician respectively. Nassar was, to many, seen as the nice guy in a sport populated by inhumane coaches. Nassar was, even by victims in this documentary, described as a confidante and friend.
What parents did not realize — and what gymnasts blocked out — was that Nassar was a serial abuser who used his position of power to abuse young women for decades until he was sentenced to between 40 and 175 years in prison in 2018. At the Heart of Gold — Erin Lee Carr’s latest HBO documentary — explores the institutional abuse that allowed for Nassar to exist, and it presents damning and heart-wrenching victim interviews. Continue reading “REVIEW: At the Heart of Gold: Inside the USA Gymnastics Scandal (2019 – Documentary)”→
The following is a review of The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley — Directed by Alex Gibney.
In 2019, we’ve already been given multiple tantalizing tales of young entrepreneurs revealed to be con artists, phoneys, or fraudsters. Call them what you will, but, with the two documentaries about the catastrophic ‘Fyre festival’ and now this documentary about a wannabe-disruptor and con artist in the biomedical industry, I find myself thinking about the loopholes these young people jumped through and how investors were fooled into making them frontmen, leaders, and innovators. In the case of The Inventor, it is not so much about incompetence but more about deception and how investors were deceived into propping up a transfixing, deep-voiced, and intense Stanford drop-out with delusions of grandeur, even as she spouted out incredibly vague descriptions of her grand idea. Continue reading “REVIEW: The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley (2019 – Documentary)”→
The following is a quick review of Antoine Griezmann: The Making of a Legend — Directed by Alex Dell & Damien Piscarel.
The Making of a Legend is a French one-hour Netflix documentary about a famous French football player named Antoine Griezmann, who, in recent years, has become one of the frontmen for the French national team and a world-class player in Spain. In this documentary, Alex Dell and Damien Piscarel tell you the story of how Griezmann went from being a dismissed French talent to becoming a star player for the French national team that won the World Cup last year. Continue reading “REVIEW: Antoine Griezmann: The Making of a Legend (2019 – Documentary)”→
The following is a short review of the RT Doc ‘Waiting for the Punchline‘ — Directed by Mat Hames.
Nick Scarpino is a co-founder of the San Francisco-based online entertainment company Kinda Funny. Before he began appearing on-camera during podcasts for Kinda Funny, he was most comfortable behind the scenes as a producer. Having found an audience and a sufficient amount of confidence, Scarpino, in early 2017, revealed to the other members of Kinda Funny that he wanted to try stand-up comedy. This documentary, Mat Hames’ Waiting for the Punchline, details his experience as a San Francisco stand-up who desperately wants a chance to do comedy on the stage of a notable San Francisco comedy club. Continue reading “REVIEW: Waiting for the Punchline (2019 – Documentary)”→
The following is a review of Leaving Neverland — Directed by Dan Reed.
The saying goes that where there’s smoke, there’s fire. When it comes to the case of Michael Jackson and everything surrounding him there’s been more smoke than you can safely breathe in. Indeed, Leaving Neverland-director Dan Reed and his film’s subjects would allege that Michael Jackson has been blowing smoke most of his adult life about what exactly goes on inside Jackson’s bedroom or his Neverland-ranch. Continue reading “REVIEW: Leaving Neverland (2019 – Documentary)”→
The following is a review of FYRE: The Greatest Party That Never Happened — Directed by Chris Smith.
Nowadays it’s tough to be informed about every tiny little thing social media cares about. When I’m not terrified about why an elderly star’s name is trending on Twitter, I don’t pay a lot of attention to what is trending on social media — something has to stand out, or my timeline has to tweet about it constantly, for me to really notice (unless it’s relevant to my interests, of course). Continue reading “REVIEW: FYRE: The Greatest Party That Never Happened (2019 – Documentary)”→
The following is a review of the Netflix Documentary Shirkers — Directed by Sandi Tan.
In the early 1990s, a group of teenage Singaporean cinephiles became filmmakers when they wrote, cast, produced, and shot their independent road movie, Shirkers. Though the film was directed by their American mentor Georges Cardona, the premise and the script came from Sandi Tan who also played the protagonist. As Sandi Tan waited to go into post-production on Shirkers, Cardona, who was in possession of the film reels, ignored her and disappeared out of nowhere with the film — leaving her and her friends empty-handed and without the film that a film critic friend of theirs thought was childish but ahead of its time. Continue reading “REVIEW: Shirkers (2018 – Documentary)”→
The following is a review of Jane Fonda in Five Acts — An HBO Documentary Film.
Documentary filmmaker Susan Lacy, who directed last year’s Spielberg, has with her newest HBO documentary film — Jane Fonda in Five Acts — pointed the camera at Jane Fonda, one of the most fascinating and controversial American movie stars of the last sixty years. The film takes you through her career, which included both ups and downs, and attempts to make the argument that she was defined by others until she found herself down the road. Continue reading “REVIEW: Jane Fonda in Five Acts (2018 – Documentary)”→