Best Documentary Movies of 1999
American Movie is the story of filmmaker Mark Borchardt, his mission, and his dream. Spanning over two years of intense struggle with his film, his family, financial decline, and spiritual crisis, American Movie is a portrayal of ambition, obsession, excess, and one man's quest for the American Dream.
Buena Vista Social Club
In this fascinating Oscar-nominated documentary, American guitarist Ry Cooder brings together a group of legendary Cuban folk musicians (some in their 90s) to record a Grammy-winning CD in their native city of Havana. The result is a spectacular compilation of concert footage from the group's gigs in Amsterdam and New York City's famed Carnegie Hall, with director Wim Wenders capturing not only the music -- but also the musicians' life stories.
Eddie Izzard: Dress to Kill
Executive transvestite Eddie Izzard takes his show to San Francisco to give a brief history of pagan and Christian religions, the building of Stonehenge, the birth of the Church of England and of Western empires, and the need for a European dream.
George Carlin: You Are All Diseased
Legendary comic Carlin comes back to the Beacon theater to angrily rant about airport security, germs, cigars, angels, children and parents, men, names, religion, god, advertising, Bill Jeff and minorities.
Beyond the Mat
Beyond the Mat is a 1999 professional wrestling documentary, directed by Barry W. Blaustein. The movie focuses on the lives of professional wrestlers outside of the ring, especially Mick Foley, Terry Funk, and Jake Roberts. The film heavily focuses on the World Wrestling Federation (WWF), often criticizing it and its chairman Vince McMahon. It also follows Extreme Championship Wrestling, it's rise in popularity, and many other independent wrestlers and organisations.
Making 'The Matrix'
A promotional making-of documentary for the film Matrix, The (1999) that devotes its time to explaining the digital and practical effects contained in the film. This is very interesting, seeing as how they're giving away the cinematic secrets that they created solely for the this movie, that have now been spoofed and referenced in countless other films.
One Day in September
The full story of the 1972 Munich Olympics Massacre and the Israeli revenge operation 'Wrath of God.' The 1972 Munich Olympics were interrupted by Palestinian terrorists taking Israeli athletes hostage. Besides footage taken at the time, we see interviews with the surviving terrorist, Jamal Al Gashey, and various officials detailing exactly how the police, lacking an anti-terrorist squad and turning down help from the Israelis, botched the operation
A Conversation with Koko the Gorilla
An afternoon spent with the famous gorilla who knows sign language, and the scientist who taught her how to "talk". One of the first words that Koko used to describe herself was Queen. The gorilla was only a few years old when she first made the gesture-sweeping a paw diagonally across her chest as if tracing a royal sash. The cause of the primate's celebrity is her extraordinary aptitude for language. Over the past 43 years, since Patterson began teaching Koko at the age of 1, the gorilla has learned more than 1,000 words of modified American Sign Language-a vocabulary comparable to that of a 3-year-old human child. While there have been many attempts to teach human languages to animals, none have been more successful than Patterson's achievement with Koko.
Mr. Death: The Rise and Fall of Fred A. Leuchter, Jr.
A portrait of the life and career of the infamous American execution device designer and holocaust denier.
Blind blues musician Paul Pena is perhaps best known for his song "Jet Airliner". In 1993, Pena heard Tuvan throat singing over his shortwave radio and subsequently taught himself how to reproduce these extraordinary sounds. This documentary follows him to Tuva, where he takes part in a throat singing competition. Languages featured in the film include English, Russian and Tuvan.
The 50 Years War: Israel and the Arabs
Leading statesmen, generals, terrorists and others who made the headlines in one of history's most bitter and enduring struggles tell the story of the Arab-Israeli conflict in The 50 Years War: Israel and the Arabs. Opening with the U.N decision to partition Palestine in 1947, the program charts the ensuing half-century of enmity, warfare, mediation and negotiation. Among the current and former heads of state and prime ministers interviewed or featured in the series are Benjamin Netanyahu, Shimon Peres and Yitzhak Shamir of Israel; King Hussein of Jordan; Yasir Arafat of the Palestine Authority; Hafez al-Assad of Syria; Jafaar Numeiry of Sudan; and U.S. Presidents Bill Clinton, George Bush and Jimmy Carter. Also appearing are foreign ministers, defense ministers, commanders in the field, heads of intelligence and guerrilla leaders, as well as high-ranking officials in the United States and the former Soviet Union.
Journeys Into the Outside with Jarvis Cocker
A tour of outsider art across the world, guided by Jarvis Cocker.
Pitch People is a documentary film that focuses on the role the art of the "pitch" has played in society. It was produced in 1999 and includes interviews with many of the pitch industry's greatest salesmen, including Arnold Morris, Sandy Mason, Lester Morris, Wally Nash and Ed McMahon as well as a look at the Popeil family.
The Lees: Action Speaks Louder
Bruce Lee 'Famous Families' Documentary
A Force More Powerful
A Force More Powerful is a 1999 feature-length documentary film and a 2000 PBS series written and directed by Steve York about non-violent resistance movements around the world. Executive producers were Dalton Delan and Jack DuVall. Peter Ackerman was the series editor and principal content advisor.
The Doors: Collection
A collection of short films, interviews and concert footage of the '60s rock band The Doors. Includes three basic video segments: Dance on Fire, Live at the Hollywood Bowl and The Soft Parade. Each of the videos is directed by Ray Manzarek. The "extras" include Ray's two UCLA student films.
A registration of the band's concert at the Roseland Ballroom in New York City during their 1998 reunion tour.
Eric Clapton & Friends in Concert
In Concert: A Benefit for the Crossroads Centre at Antigua is a live concert film featuring performances by the British rock musician Eric Clapton and invited friends, such as David Sanborn, Sheryl Crow, Mary J. Blige and Bob Dylan. The DVD and VHS releases hit the market on 26 October 1999 under license of Warner Bros. Records. The concert tickets revenue was donated to the Crossroads Centre Foundation. It was the first Crossroads Guitar Festival, although titled differently at the time. The release reached various national charts and sold more than 225,000 copies worldwide.
Marilyn Manson: God Is In the TV
A compilation of all of the band's music videos up until 1999. Also featured is exclusive footage cut from "The Dope Show" video and an hour of live and backstage footage from the Rock is Dead tour.
The Art of Piano - Great Pianists of 20th Century
This is a film that encapsulates the essence of a great pianistic age that married virtuosity and musicianship with the most thrilling aspect of individual showmanship.
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: A Look Inside
TV documentary about the third film in the Indiana Jones series.
A Tribute To Johnny Cash
On Sunday, April 18, 1999, the hottest names in rock and roll united with the biggest stars in country music when TNT presented "A Tribute To Johnny Cash." From humble beginnings as the son of a sharecropper to his rise to fame as a music legend, "The Man In Black" has become one of the most influential performers of the 20th century. Some of Cash's biggest fans, including Bruce Springsteen, Trisha Yearwood, and U2, performed in this star-studded concert saluting Cash's groundbreaking career and the rich legacy of his music. In his fifty year career as singer and song-writer, Cash garnered nine Grammy® Awards, a Kennedy Center Honor, and the distinction of becoming the first inductee in both the Country Music Hall of Fame and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame — an honor shared only by Elvis Presley.
Marijuana is the most controversial drug of the 20th Century. Smoked by generations to little discernible ill effect, it continues to be reviled by many governments on Earth. In this Genie Award-winning documentary veteran Canadian director Ron Mann and narrator Woody Harrelson mix humour and historical footage together to recount how the United States has demonized a relatively harmless drug.
MC5: Kick Out the Jams
Kick Out the Jams features many never before seen films of the MC5 as created by Leni Sinclair & conceptual artist Cary Loren during the peak of their career.
Evgeny Kissin: The Gift of Music
Evgeny Igorevich Kissin was born in Moscow on the 10th of October 1971. He started to play the piano at the age of two, as soon as he was tall enough to reach the keyboard and he has not looked back from that day to this. His is a very rare story of continued success that has had the simultaneous blessing of critics, the public and musicians alike. This film by Christopher Nupen shows Kissin in preparation, interview, rehearsal and performance, with several dazzling performances shot live on stage, in true concert conditions. It also contains all the encores from Kissin's memorable Promenade concert at the Royal Albert Hall, London, in August, 1997—the first Prom concert by a soloist, it attracted the biggest audience in all the 103 year history, very nearly six thousand people. The music is by Liszt, Gluck, Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert, Paganini, Kissin himself and Chopin, the composer for whom Kissin feels the closest affinity.
Jimi Hendrix - Live at Woodstock
Nine o'clock on Monday morning, August 18, 1969: while the work force was starting the day, Jimi Hendrix was taking the stage at Woodstock. While hundreds of thousands had already left, 25,000 people remained to see this incredible performance. Hendrix, along with drummer Mitch Mitchell and bassist Billy Cox, offered masterly renditions of the songs of the recently disbanded Experience ("Hey Joe," "Foxey Lady"), and gave a preview of the blues-based Band of Gypsys ("Izabella," "Hear My Train A Comin'"), as well as Jimi's era-defining rendition of "The Star Spangled Banner." Though the weekend had witnessed some landmark performances by other great artists, this performance from Hendrix is regarded by many as the defining moment in a festival ripe with defining moments.
Noted Hollywood stars and directors talk about the history and evolution of the film industry in Los Angeles.
From Star Wars to Star Wars: The Story of Industrial Light & Magic
The incredible evolution of George Lucas' special effects dream factory, including an inside look at "Star Wars: Episode One - The Phantom Menace."
Hitchcock: Shadow of a Genius
This documentary is a fascinating look at the cinematic genius of Alfred Hitchcock. Briefly covering much of his early British works, the film primarily focuses on his American classics, such as "Shadow of a Doubt", "Notorious", "Rear Window", "Vertigo", "Psycho" and "The Birds". The movie also covers his television years and neatly examines the Hitchcock signature touches, from his inevitable brief cameo to his famous MacGuffin.
Cirque du Soleil: Quidam
A young girl has already seen everything there is to see and her world has lost all meaning. Her anger shatters her world and she finds herself in the universe of QUIDAM, where she is joined by a playful companion, as well as another mysterious character who attempts to seduce her with the marvelous, the unsettling and the terrifying.
Curse of the Blair Witch
Mockumentary about the Blair Witch legend and the three filmmakers who disappeared in October of 1999. It first aired on the Sci-Fi Channel on July 11, 1999 as a promotional prelude to the release of The Blair Witch Project on July 30, 1999.
A Conversation with Gregory Peck
Not your usual film biography, A Conversation With Gregory Peck (2000) goes on-the-road and behind-the-scenes with Gregory Peck and his one man show. The actor's traveling program features question and answer sessions with the American icon and allows the actor to reminisce about his career.
Bringing Down the House
No overview found.
A Hot Dog Program
Enjoy an all-American celebration of what may be the country's most popular fast food. From Connecticut to South Carolina to California, Rick Sebak visits some of the nation's coolest hot dog places, taking viewers inside a giant hot dog-shaped building, stopping at some crazy late-night stands, and looking at how hot dogs are made. Wonder how and when hot dogs became so popular-or what toppings are tops these days? Tune in and find out.
The Hand Behind the Mouse: The Ub Iwerks Story
There's not a person in the world who wouldn't recognize Mickey Mouse. But until now, not many knew the man who originally gave shape, movement and personality to the world's most beloved icon. "The Hand Behind the Mouse: The Ub Iwerks Story" takes you behind the scenes to meet Walt Disney's best friend and chief animator.
Wisconsin Death Trip
Wisconsin Death Trip is an intimate, shocking and sometimes hilarious account of the disasters that befell one small town in Wisconsin during the final decade of the 19th century. The film is inspired by Michael Lesy's book of the same name which was first published in 1973. Lesy discovered a striking archive of black and white photographs in the town of Black River Falls dating from the 1890s and married a selection of these images to extracts from the town's newspaper from the same decade. The effect was surprising and disturbing. The town of Black River Falls seems gripped by some peculiar malaise and the weekly news is dominated by bizarre tales of madness, eccentricity and violence amongst the local population.
Bruce Lee: The Legend Lives On
This insightful documentary takes an in-depth look at the life of Bruce Lee, and the physical and mental practices he employed on his way to becoming the most popular martial arts star in the world. Utilizing footage of Lee both practicing and teaching Jeet Kune Do, as well as interview footage with the people who both knew and worked with Lee--including James Coburn, Bob Wall, Van Williams, Brandon Lee, and more--THE LEGEND LIVES ON is a comprehensive examination and celebration of a true artist.
Fists of Freedom: The Story of the '68 Summer Games
Fists of Freedom examines one of the 20th century’s most memorable moments — the dramatic “Black Power” demonstration of American sprinters Tommie Smith and John Carlos on the victory stand at the 1968 Summer games in Mexico City. Using rare footage, archival photos and interviews with key figures from the era, revisit a pivotal event in American history.
If We Had No Moon
Without the moon, humans wouldn't exist. Life, if it had started at all, would be in its earliest stages of evolution. Days would last four hours, winds would blow at hurricane force and there would be a dense and toxic atmosphere resembling that of Venus. Around 50 million years after the formation of the solar system, a Mars-sized planet called Theia hit the newly formed Proto-Earth. The blast sent planetary material from the pair into orbit around earth which eventually formed the Moon. In this one-hour special, viewers learn what Earth was like before the moon creating impact, and what Earth would have been like if the moon had never existed.
Goin' Down to South Park
A mockumentary which covers the making of the show South Park in a fictional fashion, apparently spoofing similar such shows, with the creators pretending to be arrogant, obnoxious jerks who are only in it for the money.
Deep Inside The Titanic
The Titanic lies in complete darkness, four kilometers beneath the ocean. So remote is this famous wreckage that only a small handful of explorers and scientists have dared to make the dangerous journey down to her decks. However, now we too can explore what is left of the mighty ship. Using special remote submersibles to glide through the living spaces of the Titanic, viewers witness the current condition of the ballrooms, hallways and living quarters of this famous vessel. In addition, this unique programme reveals what each room was like before the tragedy. On a guided tour of the ship, the stories of the inhabitants of each room are told. Around each corner, the grandeur that made this ship the pride of the White Star Line brings home the poignant story of those who spent their last moments aboard.
Classic Albums - The Who - Who's Next
In this 1999 documentary, Pete Townshend, Roger Daltrey and John Entwistle discuss the making of what many consider the Who's greatest testament to Townshend's songwriting talent: their classic album "Who's Next." Others close to the group weigh in with insights about the late Keith Moon's importance to the band. The retrospective also features unseen performances of tunes from the platter, including "Won't Get Fooled Again" and "Baba O'Riley."
Hitchcock, Selznick and the End of Hollywood
Paying homage to two of Hollywood's central icons, the film creates an unparalleled portrait of two very different personalities amidst the demise of the studio system.
The Hitler Youth
The historical documentary Hitler Youth explores Adolf Hitler's maniacal construction of the titular organization - one comprised of young Aryan men who would rule the world by fear, intimidation and violence. Via a compendium of terrifying archival footage, the program documents the establishment of the Hitler Youth, its escalation from a membership of 13,000 to 10,000,000 within fifteen years, and the death of the organization following Hitler's suicide in 1945.
BELFAST, MAINE is a film about ordinary experience in a beautiful old New England port city. It is a portrait of daily life with particular emphasis on the work and the cultural life of the community. Among the activities shown in the film are the work of lobstermen, tug-boat operators, factory workers, shop owners, city counselors, doctors, judges, policemen, teachers, social workers, nurses and ministers. Cultural activities include choir rehearsal, dance class, music lessons and theatre production.
The Frankenstein Files: How Hollywood Made a Monster
The history of Frankenstein's journey from novel to stage to screen to icon
Instrument is a documentary film directed by Jem Cohen about the band Fugazi. Cohen's relationship with band member Ian MacKaye extends back to the 1970s when the two met in high school in Washington, D.C.. The film takes its title from the Fugazi song of the same name, from their 1993 album, In on the Kill Taker. Editing of the film was done by both Cohen and the members of the band over the course of five years. It was shot from 1987 through 1998 on super 8, 16mm and video and is composed mainly of footage of concerts, interviews with the band members, practices, tours and time spent in the studio recording their 1995 album, Red Medicine. The film also includes portraits of fans as well as interviews with them at various Fugazi shows around the United States throughout the years.
Welcome to the world of no-holds-barred freestyle fighting...the fastest growing "sport" in the United States, Brazil, and Japan. CHOKE follows undisputed World Freestyle Fighting Champion Rickson Gracie as he prepares to defend his title in a one-night, single elimination tournament where the winner will fight 3 separate fights over five hours. The World Cup finals of hand-to-hand combat.
Srebrenica: A Cry from the Grave
Documentary about the fall of Srebrenica (Bosnian civil war, 1995). For a large part consisting of original video material shot by people involved themselves.
Metamorphose: M.C. Escher, 1898-1972
A documentary about the life and works of the artist M. C. Escher. Maurits Cornelis Escher (1898-1972) usually referred to as M. C. Escher, was a Dutch graphic artist. He is known for his often mathematically inspired woodcuts, lithographs, and mezzotints. These feature impossible constructions, explorations of infinity, architecture, and tessellations.