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Body of War (2008)

Body of War (2008)

This movie is sad and, at times, hard to watch.
It is about Tomas Young, a soldier who signed up for the US Army immediately following the terror attacks of September 11, 2001.
Only five days into his deployment in Iraq, Young took a shot in the back, leaving him paralyzed from …

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The Lazarus Effect (2010)

The Lazarus Effect (2010)

Forty cents a day.
That’s how much it costs to supply antiretroviral (ARV) drugs to an HIV/AIDS patient in sub-Saharan Africa.
That is the gist of this short (30 minute) documentary created by HBO and (RED).
Set in Zambia, the film documents the lives of several people whose lives have been turned around …

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Spinning Boris (2002)

Spinning Boris (2002)

This movie is disappointing.
Which is too bad, because its premise is intriguing: three American political consultants (i.e., spin doctors) are hired to help Russian President Boris Yeltsin with his campaign in 1996.
While the comedy is fictional, it is based on a true story.
The team, made up of George Gorton, Dick …

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Inside Guantanamo (2009)

Inside Guantanamo (2009)

The fact that people of all political stripes take issue with this movie goes a long way to revealing its even handedness.
Director Bonni Cohen does a wonderful job of introducing the audience to the men and women who interact with the Guantanamo detainees all day, every day.
The prison at Guantanamo …

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"Crude" filmmaker to be handed subpoena for footage

"Crude" filmmaker to be handed subpoena for footage

A federal judge has allowed Chevron to subpoena filmmaker Joe Berlinger for hundreds of hours of footage not used for “Crude,” a 2009 documentary.
“Crude” is about the 17-year, $27.3 billion lawsuit brought against Chevron for allegedly dumping toxic oil waste in the Amazon sector of Ecuador.
The 30,000 residents of the …

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I Am because We Are (2008)

I Am because We Are (2008)

Silence = Death
That anti-AIDS slogan should be heeded worldwide but perhaps even moreso in Malawi.
The singer Madonna traveled to the country, one of the world’s poorest, in 2006 and wrote and produced this documentary.
It is about children growing up without parents who have died from AIDS and who have AIDS …

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The Glass House (2008)

The Glass House (2008)

Iranian expatriate. Marjaneh Halati has created a center in Tehran called Omid e Mehr, where women living on the margins of Iranian society can come for training and hope for a better future.
That is what this documentary is about.
It follows the lives of four young women over an 18 month …

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Amreeka (2009)

Amreeka (2009)

This is a charming film.
Set at the beginning of the current war in Iraq, the movie follows the lives of Palestinians Muna and her teenage son, Fadi.
The pair relocate to a small town in Illinois where they encounter obstacles to achieving their dreams.
One theme that runs throughout the movie is …

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An independent Arab film in the works

An independent Arab film in the works

The following are excerpts from an article that appears on the National Public Radio Web site:
“British-Egyptian actor Khalid Abdalla jokingly calls his recent films — about Sept. 11, Afghanistan and Iraq — his ‘war on terror’ trilogy. Abdalla played a hijacker in United 93, an Afghan immigrant in …

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Prominent Iranian filmmaker detained

Prominent Iranian filmmaker detained

Human Rights Watch reported this week that Iranian filmmaker Jafar Panahi was arrested at his home on Monday, March 1st, together with his wife, daughter and 15 dinner guests who are fellow filmmakers and actors.
Fellow FPA blogger Neshani Jani writes about it in her Middle East …

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Crude (2009)

Crude (2009)

What is refreshing about this documentary is that it is balanced.
It is about the 17-year, $27.3 billion lawsuit brought against Chevron for allegedly dumping toxic oil waste in the Amazon sector of Ecuador.
The 30,000 residents of the area have filed a class action suit against Chevron, which assumed control of …

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The Oscars and the state of film in the U.S.

“Sure, ‘The Hurt Locker’ was a compelling profile of a horrible, though heroic, job — dismantling bombs.  And more generally, fighting wars is a horrible, thankless occupation pushed on our young men and women.  But anything deeper on war and peace, Hollywood fails to provide.  Yes, the adrenaline rush and …

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Is "Avatar" anti-American?

Is "Avatar" anti-American?

Fellow blogger Joel Davis tackles the question head on in his blog U.S. Role in the World: “For our focus on the U.S. role, I think the real question is, did the director intend to depict Americans? Having seen the film, I’d say the answer to that question is yes.”
[kml_flashembed …

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Makers of "Hurt Locker" stole bomb expert's story, says sergeant

A U.S. Army sergeant is suing the makers of the Oscar-nominated film “The Hurt Locker.” He says he felt betrayed because they stole his story. Master Sergeant Jeffrey S. Sarver, 38, claims in court documents the film makers turned an account of his frightening duties defusing bombs in …

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Germany Year Zero (1948)

Germany Year Zero (1948)

This movie is all about desperation.
It focuses on a family eking out an existence in post World War II Berlin.
The main character, Edmund, is 13 years old and does what he can to help the family get by.
It appears the film was shot entirely on location in rubble-strewn Berlin where …

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About the Author

Sean Patrick Murphy
Sean Patrick Murphy

Sean Patrick Murphy is a graduate of Bennington College, where he majored in politics and Latin American literature. He has worked for Current History magazine, Physicians for Human Rights, and Citizens for Global Solutions (formerly the World Federalist Association). He lives outside Philadelphia.

Areas of Focus:
Cinematography; Independent Films; Documentary;

Contact

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