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  • The trial of Henry Kissinger

    Best Documentaries – The Trials of Henry Kissinger

    Part contemporary investigation and part historical inquiry, documentary follows the quest of one journalist in search of justice. The film focuses on Christopher Hitchens’ charges against Henry Kissinger as a war criminal – allegations documented in Hitchens’ book of the same title – based on his role in countries such as Cambodia, Chile, and Indonesia. Kissinger’s story raises profound questions about American foreign policy and highlights a new era of human rights. Increasing evidence about one man’s role in a […]

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  • the peoples kitchen

    Best Documentaries – The Peoples Kitchen

    The Peoples Kitchen is a project that happens each and every week in Dalston, London a group of volunteers meet and go around the area collecting food that would otherwise be thrown away as waste from local shops, markets and gardens, this food in its own right is perfectly good to eat. This food is then brought together in a kitchen where it is cooked and served to around fifty to a hundred people each week, resulting in thousands being […]

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  • hollywood and the pentagon a dangerous liaison

    Best Documentaries – Hollywood and The Pentagon: A Dangerous Liaison

    The American Army’s intrusion in Hollywood war films may surprise some. In fact, the U.S. Army secret services have had close ties with American filmmakers for several decades. The movie Top Gun, for instance, was filmed with the support and approval of the U.S. Army. There is even a special bureau, the Film Liaison Office, that oversees these issues for the Pentagon and the Capitol. It has a clear mission: studying the scripts of American war movies, deciding whether to […]

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  • steal this film

    Best Documentaries – Steal this Film

    In fighting file sharing, the entertainment industry is fighting the fundamental structure of the Internet. Steal This Film is a film series documenting the movement against intellectual property and was a talking point in the British Documentary Festival. Part One, produced in Sweden and released in 2006, takes account of the prominent players in the Swedish piracy culture: The Pirate Bay, Piratbyran, and the Pirate Party. This film includes a critical analysis of an alleged regulatory capture performed by the Hollywood […]

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  • independent media in a time of war

    Best Documentaries – Independent Media In A Time Of War

    Part scathing critique, part call to action, Independent Media In A Time Of War is a hard-hitting new documentary by the Hudson Mohawk Independent Media Center. This film is composed of a speech given by Amy Goodman, host of Democracy Now! illustrated by clips of mainstream media juxtaposed with rare footage from independent reporters in Iraq. The documentary argues that dialogue is vital to a healthy democracy. Independent media has a crucial responsibility to go to where the silence is, […]

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  • manufacturingconsentnoamchomskyandthemedia

    Best Documentaries – Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media

    The Canadian documentary Manufacturing Consent: Noam Chomsky and the Media presents a lengthy, detailed look at the political beliefs of celebrated intellectual Noam Chomsky. Casting only passing glances at Chomsky’s groundbreaking work in the field of linguistics and his eventful life, filmmakers Mark Achbar and Peter Witonick instead focus on his activities as a political dissident and media critic. Particular attention is paid to his contention that the American mass media serves as a form of thought control in a democratic […]

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  • weapons of mass deception

    Best Documentaries – Weapons of Mass Deception

    WMD, a 100 minute non-fiction film, explores this story with the findings of a gutsy, media insider-turned-outsider, former network journalist, Danny Schechter, who is one of America’s most prolific media critics. Schechter says he “self-embedded” himself in his living room to monitor media coverage, by fastidiously tracking the TV coverage on a daily basis. He wrote thousands of words daily about the coverage for Mediachannel.org, the world’s largest online media issues network, and then collected his columns, blogs and articles in a […]

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  • john pilger real journalism

    Best Documentaries – John Pilger: Real Journalism

    John Richard Pilger is an Australian journalist based in London. Since his early years as a war correspondent in Vietnam, Pilger has been a strong critic of American, Australian and British foreign policy, which he considers to be driven by an imperialist agenda. Pilger has also criticized his native country’s treatment of indigenous Australians and the practices of the mainstream media. In the British print media, he has had a long association with the Daily Mirror, and writes a fortnightly column for […]

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  • stealing lincoln's body

    Best Documentaries – Stealing Lincoln’s Body

    One of the strangest, most intriguing, and yet almost unknown episodes in American history unfolded in 1876, eleven years after the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. A band of Chicago counterfeiters hatched a plot to steal the President’s body from its tomb outside Springfield, Illinois, and hold it for a ransom of $200,000. A paid informant told the newly formed Secret Service. When both the police and the criminals showed up at the cemetery on the appointed night, the scheme was foiled. This feature-length […]

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  • royal babylon

    Best Documentaries – Royal Babylon

    This is an investigative poem about the criminal record of the British Monarchy. Heathcote Williams has devised a form of polemical poetry that is unique, no-holds-barred personal and political. It is a great collection of facts that most people are unaware of. Can we go on bowing and curtsying to people who are just like ourselves? We begin to wish that the Zoo should be abolished. That the royal family should be given the run of some wider pasturage – a royal […]

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  • bugging hitlers soldiers

    Best Documentaries – Bugging Hitler’s Soldiers

    In the mess and annihilation of total war, first-class intelligence is as crucial as firepower. MI19 set out to make use of the German prisoners of war in the most enthusiastic surveillance mission ever attempted. Three courtly homes in the British non-urban area were transformed into prison camps and wired for sound. MI19’s microphones reached everywhere. Nothing was outside limits. Cloaked away in cellars and top floors were the listening rooms filled with, what at that time was cutting edge, recording […]

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  • the last duel

    Best Documentaries – The Last Duel

    After quarrelling over a bank loan, two men took part in the last fatal duel staged on Scottish soil. BBC News’s James Landale retraces the steps of his ancestor, who made that final challenge. On 23 August 1826, two men met at dawn in a field just outside Kirkcaldy in southern Fife. Only one walked away alive. One was David Landale, a linen merchant and pillar of the community. The other was George Morgan, a soldier-turned-banker with a fiery temper. The pair […]

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  • wright brothers flying machine

    Best Documentaries – Wright Brothers’ Flying Machine

    On December 17, 1903, Wilbur and Orville Wright became the first to make a controlled and sustained flight in a power-driven, heavier-than-air craft. Though not formally trained in the field of engineering, the brothers approached the problem of flight as would any well-trained engineer. Using a thorough and systematic approach, they were able to solve three key challenges that kept all other would-be flyers aground. First, there was the issue of lift. When the brothers found the existing data on lift […]

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  • beating the bomb

    Best Documentaries – Beating The Bomb

    A story about the biggest weapons of mass destruction ever created, the people who use them and, more importantly, the people who fight them. Beating the Bomb charts the history of the British peace movement against the backdrop of the atomic age. The film also frames the nuclear weapons issue within the wider context of global justice. The narrative follows the now called nuclear deterrent, starting at the dawn of the nuclear age in WWII to present day. Nuclear weapons shaped […]

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  • elusive peace israel and the arabs

    Best Documentaries – Elusive Peace: Israel and the Arabs

    A three part documentary series examines the last years of the Arab-Israeli peace process from the point of view of presidents and prime ministers, their generals and ministers and those behind the suicide bombs and assassinations. The series reveals what happened behind closed doors as the peace process failed and the violence of the intifada exploded. Israel’s former Prime Minister Ehud Barak persuaded US President Bill Clinton to devote his last 18 months in office to helping make peace with Yasser […]

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