Friday, July 01, 2011

Silverdocs 2011

Only managed to catch 4 docs this year.

This is fan doc made by Michael Rapaport that starts with the band playing in LA in 2008, then traces their foundation with Q-Tip, Phyfe Dawg, Ali Shaheed Muhammad, and sometimes Jarobi in Queens and tracks the band as they release innovative album after album only to have the band disintegrate in 1998. The tension between certain band members and the creative force that produces such innovative hip hop elevates this above most fan docs.

NPR mediator, director Michael Rapaport, and ATCQ member Phyfe Dawg at Q&A

A year in the life documentary of skateboarder Screech. This won the grand jury prize at SXSW, but I was less than impressed. It uses imagery captured with a Flip camera given to the skater, and follows his breakup with the mother of his child, his journey of discovery, and eventual growth into something better.

Director Tristan Patterson

This one is really quite fascinating. A series of embedded tiles are found in the asphalts and streets on the east coast of the U.S. and few South American cities. The tiles typically say:

IN Kubrick's 2001

The strange message and link to a famous movie had me hooked. What does the message mean, who places the tiles, and why? The doc follows a trio of obsessive fans who are determined to solve the mystery. The surprising discoveries they make and the deeper meaning are satisfying beyond just the resolution of an unsolved puzzle.

Some of the mystery solvers and director.

Producers Tony and Ridley Scott and directed by Kevin McDonald, the true star is the editor. The idea was that people all over the world would film themselves for one day, July 24, 2010, answer a few simple questions, and then submit the films. Screening 3500 hours of footage to find 90 minutes that can be put into a cohesive hole is why the editor and his team deserve some sort of superhuman award. There are surprising revelations, and the whole movie reminds me of Post Secret, the famous internet web site. But what really tweaks the imagination is what was left on the cutting room floor (the joke was that the DVD would have 3499 hours of 'extras'). A fascinating if not entirely random look at humanity.

Two contributors, editor Joe Walker, and Silverdocs personnel.

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