If “Babies” had you in tears, then “I Am A Girl” will be a 16 hanky affair. The Australian documentary, which is made possible by philanthropic donations, will show us the lives of 10 girls around the world to illustrate “the simple fact of being born female means you are more likely to be subjected to violence, disease, poverty and disadvantage than any other group on the planet.” Did you know 62 million girls around the world do not go to school? Or that women under age 20 experience half the sexual assaults in the world? I didn’t. “I Am A Girl” is heavy stuff, but important stuff too — especially for us Americans who sometimes need a reminder that in many ways we’ve been really damn fortunate. [IAmAGirl.com.au] Keep reading »
Looking for something to watch after the Britney Spears episode of “Glee”
tonight? I’ve got the perfect thing. Back in January, Jessica Goldberg told you that “Teenage Paparazzo” was her favorite flick at the Sundance Film Festival
. It’s a documentary made by Adrian Grenier
—yep, the dude from “Entourage”—and it happens to be premiering tonight on HBO. The film is two-fold. It’s a look at the paparazzi industry, digging into how far photographers will go for shots and how images taken can influence celebrity gossip. And since he’s famous, Adrian interviews stars like Lindsay Lohan
and Paris Hilton
, who are two of the most stalked in Hollywood. But it’s also a closer look at Austin Visschedyk, a 13-year-old paparazzo. Austin finds out where celebrities are going, and either gets a ride from his mom or takes a cab to get there. When he’s done shooting, he runs rather than drives away. And he makes thousands of dollars for a single shot. Yep, this doc sounds like a winner to me. Keep reading »
My most cherished possession as a 7-year-old was my autographed cassette tape of Tiffany’s self-titled album. It read “Best of luck! Tiffany.” My dad knew someone at the local radio station who hooked it up. I slept with it under my pillow for days. Yeah, I was a strange child. I wonder what happened to that, by the way? I lost track of it when I turned 9. But I digress. The important thing for you to know is that there is a new documentary out called “I Think We’re Alone Now” about Tiffany and her “super fans. Read: obsessive stalkers. Looks like these peeps saved their autographed cassette tapes. In fact, they probably still sleep with them under their pillows. I need to see this, STAT. [NY Post] Keep reading »
We’ve heard of people auctioning off their virginity before — it’s so last year. But Australian filmmaker Justin Sisely has taken it to a whole new level. He’s rounded up a whole group of virgins willing to sell their virginity for a documentary. Each virgin will get paid $20,000 plus 90 percent of their purchase price, which could go as high as to the millions. Because authorities threatened to charge Sisely with prostitution if he went ahead with the plan in Australia, he’s made a deal with a Nevada brothel to host the auction, which will be filmed naturally. (The brothel will get the other 10 percent of each virgin’s sale price.) Keep reading »
The Tribeca Film Festival comes to an end this weekend, and among the scores of movies shown during the 12-day film fest, I’m looking forward to the hair documentary “Vidal Sassoon: The Movie.” You might know the name Vidal Sassoon from the haircare commercials with the tagline, “If You Don’t Look Good, We Don’t Look Good,” but the story begins way before the celebrity hairstylist had a line of products.
Vidal grew up in a Jewish orphanage in London, served in the Israeli army, and became one of the first stars of the hair world in the ’60s, developing a new geometric technique for cutting hair (the “five-point”) and making news when he cut Mia Farrow’s hair for “Rosemary’s Baby.” I love how documentaries give an insider-y view of aspects of glamorous industries we don’t normally see (i.e., “The September Issue“) so I’ve already added “Vidal Sassoon: The Movie” to my Netflix queue. Keep reading »
I am a sucker for a good documentary. In my humble opinion, “The Times of Harvey Milk” was way better than the Sean Penn-fest, “Milk.” I find that real life is just too terrible and wonderful all on its own to need fictionalizing. And so, I was hyped to go to the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival this year, which took place last weekend in Durham, North Carolina. This was Full Frame’s 13th year. In addition to the usual programming of great new documentaries from all over the world, there was a series on labor (apropos, huh?), curated by Steven Bognar and Julia Reichert (of “The Last Truck: Closing of the GM Plant”).
Of the 17 films I saw in those blurry-eyed three days, here are my favorites. Keep reading »