Jason and I completed the challenge last night but before we write up our summary we need to get some documentary reviews out of the way. I’m writing six and Jason will write six later. I’m listing them in the order I liked them best.
Written by Stacy
Why are the world’s bees dying? A 3rd generation German-Swiss beekeeper wonders why his purebred black bees are dying while John Miller in the California has some idea of why his bees are dying in the world’s largest almond groves. By traveling around the world we can begin to get a clearer picture of how modern global living is stressing the bees beyond what they can handle. I loved learning about the way the hives are being manipulated and the perserverance of the killer bees. This is a much watch for everyone.
I was a late convert to Amy Winehouse but fell in love with her voice after her premature death. You can feel every emotion in her songs. This films uses only clips to show her life and how falling in love with the wrong guy, drugs, and her ascent to stardom started her on a downward spiral from which she would not recover. The world lost an amazing talent. It’s a heartbreaking story and a must see for fans.
Migrant workers in China’s big cities go home only once a year, if they’re lucky, and only at great expense and hardship. This family of five, the grandmother and two grandchildren at a very remote farm, and the two parents in the city sewing to earn money, struggle to stay connected year after year. The parents stress education to their children so that the will not end up in a dead end job like their parents, but it’s hard to parent from so far away. It was an eye opener for sure. Well worth the subtitles.
2014. Stacy 4/5 & Jason 4.5/5
Told with first hand accounts of survivors and home and military video this is a harrowing look into the Vietnam War. One of the last infantry companies to be drafted, trained and sent to the war zone together this was a personal look at the daily lives of these soldiers. It was powerful, showing the solidarity of these men even after all these years.
2014. 1 hour 34 minutes. Jason and Stacy 4/5
Eugene Cernan became the 11th and last (so far) man to walk on the moon in 1972. He tells the story of his invitation to become and astronaut and what life was like training with his friends for multiple trips to space. He was driven, ambitious, and able to excuse himself of his shortcomings as a father and husband. It was a fascinating look at the space program in its heyday. He died this month at the age of 82.
2016. 48 minutes. Stacy 1.5/5 & Jason 2.5/5
A small tribe in the Amazon along the Brazil border makes its first contact with civilized society. Parts of it felt so fake, maybe because it felt like so much of the story was missing.