May 22, 2014 – Doc Round-Up #1

As the BMP documentary project that I’ve been working on for the last two years continues to evolve, I’ve returned to frequent documentary viewing for inspiration and critique. I’ve been thinking a great deal about how the doc, in addition to being relevant right now, will represent the current situation in twenty years. With that in mind I’ve been looking at how some documentaries have stood the test of time. I’ve mostly been watching docs that focus on aspects of the civil rights movement and a few that focus on music. There is a great deal of intersection between the two in most cases. I’ve learned a great deal and remembered more while taking these in.

One note on these selections. We don’t have a media budget beyond a netflix subscription,  so the majority of my screening options are from the quite limited ‘free’ watch online variety. I know I’m missing the for-a-fee, ‘cream of the crop’ premiere stuff, but I think that serves my intentions here. Not everyone has a netfix account so I’ve attempted to share accessible links here while at the same time linking to the site where folk can support the film maker, or more likely, the corp that owns the rights to the film, but that’s a rant for another time.

I plan to share these ‘Doc Round-Ups’ once a week. Respect, ~G

The Camden 28 were a group of “Catholic left” anti-Vietnam War activists who in 1971 planned and executed a raid on a Camden, New Jersey draft board.

Berkeley in the Sixties recaptures the exhilaration and turmoil of the unprecedented student protests that shaped a generation and changed the course of America. From the HUAC hearings and civil rights sit-ins at the beginning of the decade through the Free Speech Movement, the anti-war protests, the growth of the counter-culture, the founding of the Black Panther Party and the stirrings of the Women’s Movement – confronts every viewer with the questions the 1960s raised, which remain largely unanswered.

PUNK IN AFRICA is the story of the multiracial punk movement within the recent political and social upheavals experienced in three Southern African countries: South Africa, Mozambique and Zimbabwe.  NOTE: I suggest certain parts of this could be used to launch a discussion on appropriation and gentrification IMO.

The Pruitt-Igoe Myth: an Urban HistoryIt began as a housing marvel. Two decades later, it ended in rubble. But what happened to those caught in between? The Pruitt-Igoe Myth tells the story of the transformation of the American city in the decades after World War II, through the lens of the infamous Pruitt-Igoe housing development and the St. Louis residents who called it home.