We all wish that this lockdown were finally over, but the truth remains that we have to stay at home and take all the health measures as suggested by the health authorities. I have prepared a list of documentaries that are worth watching.
“The Silence of Others”: One of the best documentaries coming from Spain in the last few years. Directed by Aludena Carracedo and Robert Bahar, it narrates what happened to victims of human rights abuses during Franco’s regime. Much of the documentary follows the progress of a lawsuit filed in Argentina, whose courts, using a principle called universal jurisdiction, could theoretically step in where Spain would not. This is an excellent documentary and an eye opener!
“Shirkers”: A 2018 documentary from Singapore-born Sandi Tan. It won the World Cinema Documentary Directing Award at the Sundance Film Festival. In 1992, when Tan was 19, she and and several friends shot at independent film which they titled “Shirkers.” But one of them, Georges Cardona, stole the film and the footage disappeared. It was not until 2011, four years after Cardona’s death that his ex-wife returned the film, which had been in her possession all the time, to Tan. Tan decided to create something new—a documentary about the making of the film. It consisted of interviews with people who were involved in the original filming and also people who knew Cardona.
“Sad Hill Unearthed”: A 2017 Spanish documentary directed by Guillermo de Oliveira which was nominated for the Goya Award for the best documentary film. It has interviews with Clint Eastwood and Ennio Morricone and is set on location where “The Good, the Bad and the Ugly” was shot. It features Sad Hill Cemetery, which was the location where Clint Eastwood, Lee Van Cleef, and Eli Wallach had their showdown. It’s a great memorialization of the classic 1966 Western.
“Casting JonBenet”: This 2017 Australian documentary will surprise you for what it is not. It is not like so many crime shows that analyze famous unsolved murders. Instead, it delves into why it is that we are so obsessed with the death of a little girl and creates countless possible scenarios of what might have happened. The director, Kitty Green, uses a unique approach in that she interviews and films actors auditioning to play the part of the dead girl, her parents, and others who were part of the life and eventual death of JonBenet. She piles all these stories and, in the end, demonstrates that we are incapable of knowing what truly happened.