Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Full Frame: DocFilm's top picks

Yesterday we detailed the winners of this year's Full Frame awards, and while those were some excellent films, we feel they left out some great documentaries. So below are our top five (and why!):

1) Resurrect Dead: The Mystery of the Toynbee Tiles - Jon Foy makes me sick. The first time director not only manages to create a fascinating documentary with a great story, he also taught himself how to compose music so he could create arguably the best score I've heard in a documentary in years.
2) Buck - Cindy Meehl will be hard pressed to find a more interesting and engaging character than the one she's found for her first film. Buck Brannaman is not only the most likable documentary figure since Steve Wiebe in King of Kong, but he also had to overcame a dark past to get to the caring man we see on film today.
3) Project Nim - James Marsh takes his storytelling to a different realm with this monkey related tale. Though it is much more serious than a Curious George story, Marsh finds time to highlight the absurd characters Nim encounters and keeps audiences engaged.
4) Page One: Inside the New York Times - Andrew Rossi's film isn't about fawning over the newspaper (though it does give a favorable opinion), instead immersing itself to highlight new and growing issues within print media. It won't provide any answers, but will certainly spur discussion.
5) Square Grouper: Godfathers of Ganja - Billy Corben covers all things Miami, and his most recent drug film continues to demonstrate his talent for fleshing out unique characters. Effortlessly packing three stories into one documentary is enough proof of his talent, but having you enthralled with each tale places him on a whole different level.

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