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'Ma Rainey's Black Bottom' Matches:

Ma Rainey's Black Bottom

  • Optimistic ▶ No thanks
  • Overall Depth ▶ Deep or penetrating
  • Rules ▶ Rigid or strongly constrained
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Merchants of Doubt (2015)

Directed by Robert Kenner, of the excellent documentary Food, Inc. (2009), Merchants of Doubt feels a little scattershot, as if it were unsure exactly whether to stay on the topic of misdirection or to dive directly into the immediate and pressing issue of climate change. When it is on topic, it's quite educational, illustrating just how people are hired for the purpose of misrepresenting data (or presenting false data) and how they cast doubt. read more...
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    • Anxiety Level ▶ I like my stomach in knots
    • Optimistic ▶ No thanks
    • Moralistic ▶ Yes please
    • Rules ▶ Rigid or strongly constrained
    • Overall Depth ▶ Deep or penetrating
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Merchants of Doubt (2015)

100.0% Match

  • With: n/a
  • Written by: Robert Kenner, Kim Roberts
  • Directed by: Robert Kenner
  • MPAA Rating: PG-13 for brief strong language
  • Running Time: 96 minutes
  • Release Date: 03/05/2015
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99 Homes (2015)

The acclaimed indie filmmaker Ramin Bahrani (Goodbye Solo), who regularly and bravely focuses on heartbreaking trials of life while keeping his stories rooted in humanity, turns in some of his finest work. A work of great power and subtlety, 99 Homes manages to talk about one of today's most pressing and troubling issues without getting preachy or overbearing. At the same time, the movie borrows the classical structure of the Faust story, but still manages to feel immediate and relevant. read more...
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    • Optimistic ▶ No thanks
    • Moralistic ▶ Yes please
    • Rules ▶ Rigid or strongly constrained
    • Overall Depth ▶ Deep or penetrating
X

99 Homes (2015)

100.0% Match

  • With: Andrew Garfield, Michael Shannon, Laura Dern, Tim Guinee, Noah Lomax, Clancy Brown, J.D. Evermore
  • Written by: Ramin Bahrani, based on a story by Ramin Bahrani, Amir Naderi, Bahareh Azimi
  • Directed by: Ramin Bahrani
  • MPAA Rating: R for language including some sexual references, and a brief violent image
  • Running Time: 112 minutes
  • Release Date: 09/24/2015
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The Circle (2000)

Just a few weeks ago, the Shooting Gallery film series released Marziyeh Meshkini's and Mohsen Makhmalbaf's The Day I Became a Woman. I was afraid then that no one would see that beautiful and vibrant film because it seemed to be about "battered Iranian women," though it was really about their breathtaking attempts to escape domination. Now comes Jafar Panahi's The Circle, a far more heavyweight, but equally brilliant film about women whose escape seems unlikely. read more...
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    • Optimistic ▶ No thanks
    • Rules ▶ Rigid or strongly constrained
    • Overall Depth ▶ Deep or penetrating
X

The Circle (2000)

99.0% Match

  • With: Maryiam Palvin Almani, Nargess Mamizadeh, Fareshteh Sadr Orfani, Monir Arab, Elham Saboktakin, Fatemeh Naghavi, Mojgan Faramarzi
  • Written by: Kambuzia Partovi
  • Directed by: Jafar Panahi
  • MPAA Rating: Unrated
  • Language: Farsi with English subtitles
  • Running Time: 91 minutes
  • Release Date: 09/05/2000
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Citizenfour (2014)

Sometimes a documentary goes beyond all critical appraisal and simply needs to be seen by every American. Although I understand that a theatrical release gives it more credibility, frankly it ought to be shown free, online. Perhaps in a few months, it will. read more...
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    • Anxiety Level ▶ I like my stomach in knots
    • Optimistic ▶ No thanks
    • Rules ▶ Rigid or strongly constrained
    • How Things Happen ▶ By cause and effect, mechanics, rules or facts
    • Overall Depth ▶ Deep or penetrating
X

Citizenfour (2014)

99.0% Match

  • With: Edward Snowden, Glenn Greenwald, Laura Poitras, Jeremy Scahill, Jacob Appelbaum, Julian Assange, Kevin Bankston, William Binney, Ewen MacAskill, Lindsay Mills
  • Written by: n/a
  • Directed by: Laura Poitras
  • MPAA Rating: R for language
  • Running Time: 114 minutes
  • Release Date: 10/23/2014
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Strange Victory (1948)

This poetic, essay-like documentary was released in 1948, but remains — crushingly — relevant in 2018. Director Leo Hurwitz combined harrowing footage of WWII and its aftermath with footage of civilians at home, carefully demonstrating how the ideas of hatred and separation that led to the war continue in America after its victory. Or, as the narrator puts it, the ideas of the losers are active among the winners. Strange Victory is a uniquely thoughtful, forward-thinking film, unafraid to point out the basic flaws of racism and cultural discrimination. True to form, the film's enemies, rather than listening to its arguments and responding intelligently, simply tried to shut it down, labeling it "communist" and blacklisting its maker. In the film, Hurwitz crosses images of worried-looking folks on the street with brutal images of destruction, then moves on to a moment of hope: the end of the war. He focuses on babies being born, all equal in their cribs, but notes their differences, and the ways that society will strive to keep them apart and to keep some of them down. He ends with the argument that hope is still in short supply and that the true victory is yet to be won. And, with hatred and racism rampant in the American mainstream today, that argument is still valid. read more...
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    • Optimistic ▶ No thanks
    • Rules ▶ Rigid or strongly constrained

Strange Victory (1948)

99.0% Match

  • With: Alfred Drake, Muriel Smith, Gary Merrill, Saul Levitt (narrators)
  • Written by: Leo Hurwitz
  • Directed by: Leo Hurwitz
  • MPAA Rating: NR
  • Running Time: 64 minutes
  • Release Date: 08/13/2018
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