Best Documentary Movies of 1964
A group of British children aged 7 from widely ranging backgrounds are interviewed about a range of subjects. Director Michael Apted plans to re-interview them at 7 year intervals to determine how their lives and attitudes have changed.
Culloden, Scottish Highlands, April 16th, 1746. It was one of the most mishandled and brutal battles ever fought in Great Britain. Its aftermath was tragic. The men responsible for such a disaster must be exposed. The men, women and children who suffered because of it must be remembered.
The Pink Auto
The Pink Auto, screened using two projectors, is one of the very first examples of expanded cinema. Jeff Keen walks as a zombie and carry his dead bride through brown English fields.
The T.A.M.I. Show
Hailed by one music reviewer as "the grooviest, wildest, slickest hit ever to pound the screen," "The T.A.M.I. Show" is an unrelenting rock spectacular starring some of the greatest pop performers of the 60s. These top recording idols - representing the musical moods of London, Liverpool, Hollywood and Detroit - packed the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium with 2,600 screaming fans and virtually brought down the house. This is the cinematic record of that electrifying event.
Dog Star Man: Part IV
A man is supine on a mountain side. Images rush past of nature and a stained glass saint. An infant is born. We see a lactating nipple. Images include a mountain peak, farm buildings, a tree stump, a fire, a crawling baby, and the sun. The man falls and rolls. Then, later, he swings his ax.
Of Stars and Men
Of Stars and Men is a 1964 animated film from the Hubley family of animators, based on the 1959 book of the same name by astronomer Harlow Shapley, who also narrates. Made in the style of a documentary, it tells of humankind's quest (in the form of a child) to find its place in the universe, through themes such as outer space, physical matter, the meaning of life and the periodic table. There are no character voices; instead, they "talk" through their actions. It has been cited as an example of an "animated documentary".
Short doc by Maurice Pialat. The first film in the series set at Turkey, Bosphore, is also the only one that was shot in color.
Maître Galip is the most poetic and powerful of Pialat's Turkish Chronicles, using the poems of Nazim Hikmet to accompany a series of evocative images of ordinary working class people in Istanbul. This was the film that Pialat himself claimed was the most complete realization of what he was aiming for with his Turkish documentaries. It's not difficult to see why this was his favorite: here he abandons the historical commentary and documentary observation of the other shorts in favor of an emotional emphasis on the lives of the poor and the unemployed.A short doc by Maurice Pialat.
The Finest Hours
A biography of Winston Churchill, shown through re-creations and actual film footage and told by Orson Welles.
What's Happening! The Beatles in the USA
New York, USA, February 1964. Five grueling days in the life of George, John, Paul and Ringo, the Fab Four, The Beatles: the hysterical fan reception at JFK airport; several press conferences; in their rooms at the Plaza Hotel; in the backstage at the Ed Sullivan Show; hanging out with the legendary DJ Murray the K; and the frantic return home.
Pehlivan focuses on a three-day wrestling competition, an ancient tradition that dates back over a thousand years to the time of the Ottoman Empire, originating in the games the soldiers would play to entertain themselves in between battles. Maybe that's why there's more than a hint of homoeroticism in the way the wrestlers oil themselves up with grease, making sure to cover every inch of their bodies so that their opponents will be unable to get a grip. Pialat's closeups emphasize the men's muscular bodies jammed together and sliding off one another, posed in intimate, twisted arrangements, struggling desperately for a grip on each other's bodies. Arms are jammed down pants, one of the only places there's some potential for a handhold, and the whole thing is very suggestive and sensual, a form of intimate male contact that's sanctioned as a show of strength and masculinity.
Beyond the Fringe
A TV version of the stage show originally performed at the Edinburgh Fringe (August 1962) and in London (Fortune Theatre, May 1961) and Broadway (October 1962).
The March, also known as The March to Washington, is a 1964 documentary film by James Blue about the 1963 civil rights March on Washington. It was made for the Motion Picture Service unit of the United States Information Agency for use outside the United States – the 1948 Smith-Mundt Act prevented USIA films from being shown domestically without a special act of Congress. In 1990 Congress authorized these films to be shown in the U.S. twelve years after their initial release. In 2008, the film was selected for preservation in the United States National Film Registry by the Library of Congress as being "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant". (Wikipedia)
Point of Order!
Point of Order is compiled from TV footage of the 1954 Army-McCarthy hearings, in which the Army accused Senator McCarthy of improperly pressuring the Army for special privileges for Private David Schine, formerly of McCarthy's investigative staff. McCarthy accused the Army of holding Schine hostage to keep him from searching for Communists in the Army. These hearings resulted in McCarthy's eventual censure for conduct unbecoming a senator.
To Be Alive!
"To Be Alive!" was designed to celebrate the common ground between different cultures by tracing how children in various parts of the world mature into adulthood.
Faces of November
Robert Drew shows the sights and sounds from the funeral of President John F. Kennedy in November, 1963.
Four Days In November
1964 American documentary film about the assassination of John F. Kennedy.
I Think They Call Him John
The life of an old man, John Cartner Ronson, living alone in a huge block of flats in London since his wife died nine years earlier.
A Study in Wet
Montage of water related subjects.
The Land Burns
A short film describing the bleak reality of life in the rural regions in Brazil through the story of thirty-five-year-old farmer Juan Amaro.
A portrait of the life and work of the great Hungarian composer BÃ©la BartÃ³k, exploring both his music and his passionate interest in his country's folklore.
Byzance uses a text by Stefan Zweig to describe the Ottoman conquest of the city in 1453. Before he turned to feature filmmaking in 1968 with Naked Childhood, Pialat worked on a series of short films, many of them financed by French television. Byzance is one of Pialat’s six Turkish shorts.
Nine from Little Rock
The Arkansas school integration crisis and the changes wrought in subsequent years. This film profiles the lives of the nine African-American students who integrated Central High in Little Rock, Arkansas, during the fall of 1957. The film documents the perspective of Jefferson Thomas and his fellow students seven years after their historic achievement. Central to this story is their quiet but brave entrance into Little Rock High, escorted by armed troops under the intense pressure of the on looking crowd. We learn first hand their impressions of the past and present and their hopes for the future. Their selfless heroism broke the integration crisis and pioneered a new era. This film went on to win an Academy Award® for Best Documentary Short in 1964.
"Meat Joy is an erotic rite — excessive, indulgent, a celebration of flesh as material: raw fish, chicken, sausages, wet paint, transparent plastic, ropes, brushes, paper scrap. Its propulsion is towards the ecstatic — shifting and turning among tenderness, wildness, precision, abandon; qualities that could at any moment be sensual, comic, joyous, repellent. Physical equivalences are enacted as a psychic imagistic stream, in which the layered elements mesh and gain intensity by the energy complement of the audience. The original performances became notorious and introduced a vision of the 'sacred erotic.' This video was converted from original film footage of three 1964 performances of Meat Joy at its first staged performance at the Festival de la Libre Expression, Paris, Dennison Hall, London, and Judson Church, New York City."
Truth and Illusion: An Introduction to Metaphysics
A meditation or film-essay on metaphysics, perception, and the purpose and progress of mankind.
140 Days Under the World
140 Days Under the World is a 1964 New Zealand short documentary film about Antarctica. It depicts one summer's work by New Zealand scientists in the Ross Dependency in the Antarctic and the exploration of some of the last unmapped regions. It was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Short.
The Child Molester
Produced by the Highway Safety Foundation in 1964, this shocking film deals with a subject quite taboo for its time. The short serves as a dramatized warning, ending with graphic case studies. Unlike the driver's education films produced by the same company, this film was apparently issued for only a short time before being withdrawn. (archive.org)
Learning to Live
The film twice states that it doesn't intend a moral injunction, but it clearly does with comments such as "our society... regards sexual intercourse outside marriage as irresponsible and possibly disastrous" and "you can use your knowledge with responsibility and real love or you can use it wantonly and with mere animal appetite". This is clearly marriage education not sex education.
Eskimo Artist: Kenojuak
This documentary shows how an Inuit artist's drawings are transferred to stone, printed and sold. Kenojuak Ashevak became the first woman involved with the printmaking co-operative in Cape Dorset. This film was nominated for the 1963 Documentary Short Subject Oscar.
The moving camera shapes the screen image with great purposefulness, using the frame of a window as fulcrum upon which to wheel about the exterior scene. The zoom lens rips, pulling depth planes apart and slapping them together, contracting and expanding in concurrence with camera movements to impart a terrific apparent-motion to the complex of the object-forms pictured on the horizontal-vertical screen, its axis steadied by the audience's sense of gravity. The camera's movements in being transferred to objects tend also to be greatly magnified (instead of the camera the adjacent building turns). About four years of studying the window-complex preceded the afternoon of actual shooting (a true instance of cinematic action-painting). The film exists as it came out of the camera barring one mechanically necessary mid-reel splice
Zen for Film
In an endless loop, unexposed film runs through the projector. The resulting projected image shows a surface illuminated by a bright light, occasionally altered by the appearance of scratches and dust particles in the surface of the damaged film material. This a film which depicts only its own material qualities; An "anti-film", meant to encourage viewers to focus on the lack of concrete images.
Breer's extraordinary autobiographical film combines personal and family photos with intense colors, textures and geometric abstractions. Originally presented as part of Karlheinz Sotckhausen's 1964 premiere of Originale. - Harvard Film Archive
Casals Conducts: 1964
While at his workshop in Puerto Rico, Pablo Casals prepares to conduct a Bach suite for a concert performance. Oscar Winner for the category "Best Short Subject, Live Action Subjects"
SONG 5: A childbirth song (the Songs are a cycle of silent color 8mm films by the American experimental filmmaker Stan Brakhage produced from 1964 to 1969).
Die Borussen kommen
It's the first Bundesliga season, and we accompany the team of Borussia Dortmund.
Andy Warhol directs a single 35-minute shot of a man's face to capture his facial expressions as he receives the sexual act depicted in the title.
Portrait of Queenie
Film profiling actress and singer, Queenie Watts as she entertains at her London pub.
The Inheritance shows what life was really like for immigrants and working Americans from the turn of the century through the fight for civil rights in the 1960s. This stirring history of our country shows their struggle to put down roots, form labor unions, survive wars, and finally, create a new and better life for themselves and our nation. The film explores a landscape largely unknown to the present generation - the dim sweatshops, coal mines and textile mills filled with children; the anxious years of the depression and labor's bloody struggle for the right to organize; the battlefields of WW I and II; the seldom seen newsreel footage of the Memorial Day massacre at The Republic Steel strike in Chicago; the civil rights struggle - as every generation fights again to preserve and extend its freedoms. This is the film's theme. Judy Collins sings this theme song, as well as more great music sung by Judy, Pete Seeger, Tom Paxton and others.
Lambert & Co.
Jazz vocalist Dave Lambert auditions a new group of singers at RCA Studios in 1964.
Documentary about a boy living with his family in extreme poverty in Rio de Janeiro.
Disneyland Goes to the World's Fair
Walt Disney shows the viewing audience dinosaurs that will be used at the 1964 New York World's Fair in which Disneyland will play an important part at.
Sophia Loren in Rome
Sophia Loren, who was born in Rome and lived there as a child, returns to the city that will forever be in her blood and gives her impressions of and reactions to the mosaic of Rome and the people she encounters there during her visit. She meets Marcello Mastroianni and Vittorio de Sica as she visits the sights, affectionately commenting on the grandeur of the Eternal City and the irrepressible nature of its people.
London in the Raw
Influenced by the worldwide success of Italian 'Mondo' movies, British low-budget movie mogul Arnold Louis Miller concocted this exploitation-style documentary. Peering behind the grimy net curtains of London life into seedy bars and clubs, and burrowing beneath the glittering façade of the capital's glamorous cocktail lounges and casinos, "London in the Raw" presents a cynical, sometimes startling, vision of life in 1960s London.
Around the Beatles
The show opens on an image of the Globe Theatre, with Ringo Starr unfurling a flag with the legend "Around The Beatles". The studio setting is arranged as a theater in the round, (hence the show's name) echoing the seating arrangement of the Globe. The opening act is a humorous rendition of the "play within a play", Pyramus and Thisbe (Act V, Scene I) from William Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream, with Paul McCartney as Pyramus, John Lennon as his lover Thisbe, George Harrison as Moonshine, and Starr as Lion.
Horror stars are interviewed about their craft and films.
A Talk with Hitchcock
"Master of Suspense" Alfred Hitchcock speaks candidly in this one-on-one interview with director and host Fletcher Markle, filmed in 1964 for the television documentary series "Telescope." During the discussion, Hitchcock talks about his early career as a silent-film editor, offers his take on the building blocks of his works and relates his theories on the impact of horror films on society and human behavior.
The Poet's Eye
A tribute to William Shakespeare devised by Geoffrey Buckland-Smith and made in connection with the quatro-centenary celebrations. Spoken extracts from Shakespeare's works (read by Stephen Murray) blend with visuals of scenes in Britain today which illustrate his references to countryside or childhood, and the sea or to the taverns and trades of London. Includes sequence of Olivier as Henry V and is accompanied by period music on the lute by Desmond Dupré.
Today in Britain
Some of the many facets of life in Britain today showing recent developments in industry, atomic power, sport and education, as well as her participation in the United Nations and contribution to the development of the multi-racial Commonwealth.
The Guns of August
Traces the origins and actions of World War I, from the funeral of Britain's King Edward VII to the Versailles Treaty.
The Searching Eye
The simple actions of a young boy on the beach provide visual metaphors for the normally unseen world. The camera adds a profound dimension to what the boy has seen, giving us a deeper understanding of visual awareness.