Best Documentary Movies of 2008
Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son About His Father
In 2001, Andrew Bagby, a medical resident, is murdered not long after breaking up with his girlfriend. Soon after, when she announces she's pregnant, one of Andrew's many close friends, Kurt Kuenne, begins this film, a gift to the child.
Zeitgeist: Addendum premiered at the 5th Annual Artivist Film Festival. Director Peter Joseph stated: "The failure of our world to resolve the issues of war, poverty, and corruption, rests within a gross ignorance about what guides human behavior to begin with. It address the true source of the instability in our society, while offering the only fundamental, long-term solution."
Man on Wire
On August 7th 1974, French tightrope walker Philippe Petit stepped out on a high wire, illegally rigged between New York's World Trade Center twin towers, then the world's tallest buildings. After nearly an hour of performing on the wire, 1,350 feet above the sidewalks of Manhattan, he was arrested. This fun and spellbinding documentary chronicles Philippe Petit's "highest" achievement.
Documentary filmmaker Robert Kenner examines how mammoth corporations have taken over all aspects of the food chain in the United States, from the farms where our food is grown to the chain restaurants and supermarkets where it's sold. Narrated by author and activist Eric Schlosser, the film features interviews with average Americans about their dietary habits, commentary from food experts like Michael Pollan and unsettling footage shot inside large-scale animal processing plants.
It Might Get Loud
A documentary on the electric guitar from the point of view of three significant rock musicians: the Edge, Jimmy Page and Jack White.
Commentator-comic Bill Maher plays devil's advocate with religion as he talks to believers about their faith. Traveling around the world, Maher examines the tenets of Christianity, Judaism and Islam and raises questions about homosexuality, proof of Christ's existence, Jewish Sabbath laws, violent Muslim extremists.
Shine a Light
Martin Scorsese and the Rolling Stones unite in "Shine A Light," a look at The Rolling Stones." Scorsese filmed the Stones over a two-day period at the intimate Beacon Theater in New York City in fall 2006. Cinematographers capture the raw energy of the legendary band.
Life in Cold Blood
David Attenborough hosts this compelling documentary series that explores the world of reptiles and amphibians, using amazing new technology that gives viewers a real inside look at these creatures' lives. A co-production between BBC and Animal Planet, the show follows a variety of cold-blooded creatures all over the world, examining the individual behavior and complex societies of these fascinating animals.
Director James Toback takes an unflinching, uncompromising look at the life of Mike Tyson--almost solely from the perspective of the man himself. TYSON alternates between the controversial boxer addressing the camera and shots of the champion's fights to create an arresting picture of the man.
Living in Emergency: Stories of Doctors Without Borders
In the war-zones of Liberia and Congo, four volunteers with Doctors Without Borders struggle to provide emergency medical care under extreme conditions. With different levels of experience, each volunteer must find their own way to face the challenges, the tough choices, and the limits of their idealism. "Living in Emergency" is a window into the seldom portrayed and less-than glamorous side of humanitarian aid work. It explores a world that is challenging, complex, and fraught with dilemmas - the struggles, both internal and external, that aid workers face when working in war zones and other difficult contexts.