Don Schwartz Spotlight on Documentaries

Welcome to the Blog of actor/journalist/personal historian Don Schwartz.

Don has been published in a variety of publications since 1977. His book, Telling Their Own Stories: Conversations with Documentary Filmmakers, is available from Amazon in softback or Kindle edition.

Don holds multiple degrees, including a Ph.D. in psychology and counseling from the California Institute of Integral Studies.

Don is a regular guest on our web radio show, The Art of Film Funding, produced by From the Heart Productions, reviewing documentary films with founder Carole Dean—http://www.blogtalkradio.com/the-art-of-film-funding

Don also contributes film reviews and filmmaker profiles to CineSource Magazine online—www.CineSourceMagazine.com

His weekly film review appears in The Marin Posthttps://marinpost.org/

Don’s actor resumé, voice samples, and reel may be found at: www.DonSchwartz.com

You can access Don’s Personal Historian services at:

You can find, and Like Don’s official Facebook page athttps://www.facebook.com/OfficialDonSchwartz

Between the Folds: Origami Evolving

September 18th, 2014

3da-intel-paper-panther-hiRes Vanessa Gould’s documentary Between the Folds is an exquisite work of art about exquisite works of art – and their creators. Gould interviews 16 origami artists, and at least one paper maker, presenting their completed works as well as works in progress. Although less than an hour long, Gould, who also narrates, has deftly filled this brief time wit ...Read More

Kumpanìa: Flamenco Los Angeles

September 18th, 2014

a69bbf2d29fd380bbda485f75de43bf8Kumpanìa is Katina Dunn’s exhilarating documentary about the flamenco community in Los Angeles, California. Dunn interviews the dancers, singers, players and cultural historians. She provides astounding performances of music, voice, and dance. Narrator  Bruce Bisenz is our host – and a flamenco-loving photographer who has ...Read More

Trust: Second Acts in Young Lives

September 16th, 2014

Produced by Marin County, California filmmakers Nancy Kelly and Kenji Yamamoto, Trust deftly weaves several stories. We learn about the founding and work of the Albany Park Theater Company in Chicago. Working with adolescents, David Feiner and David_Directing1Maggie Popadiak produce plays based on the teens’ experiences. Each young person in the theater troupe has a life story; this group of teens share these stories; ...Read More

The Art of the Steal

September 15th, 2014

The Art of the Steal is an elaborate game of Clue, only instead of figuring out who murdered who, with what weapon, in which room; it’s who destroyed one man’s beatific vision, with what tactics, in which jurisdiction? art_of_the_steal The film opens with these words: “In 1922 Albert C. Barnes, M.D., created the Barnes Foundation in Lower Merion, Pennsylvania, five miles from the center of Philadel ...Read More

Particle Fever: The Search for the Higgs boson

September 15th, 2014

Released theatrically in 2014, Particle Fever documents the search for ‘the God particle’—the Higgs boson, the discovery of which would ‘explain everything’—at the Swiss-based Large Hadron Collider. ATLAS_Detector Like Ron Howard’s Apollo 13 and every biographical, historical, and biblical movie ever made, we know the end of Particle Fever. And, like Apollo 13, this fi ...Read More

An Unreal Dream: The Michael Morton Story

September 15th, 2014

I’m not a critic. I don’t criticize films, I review them. And I only review a film if, for any one reason, I recommend it. With rare exception, I review only documentary films. I review them because I hold the conviction that our world will be a better place if and when very large numbers of people see and respond to these films. UnrealDreamCover-lo-res A few of the documentary films I see are en ...Read More

a woman like that: a portrait of artemisia gentileschi

September 13th, 2014

artemisia-gentileschi-1-sizeda woman like that is a dual focus documentary primarily focusing on the life and work of 17th century Italian female artist Artemisia Gentileschi. The secondary focus is on the film’s maker, Ellen Weissbrod who introduces her film by telling of her 30-year career making other people’s ideas, and of her discovery of Artemisia from the reading of a b ...Read More

9000 Needles

September 12th, 2014

9000 Needles is a simple, straight-forward story which has a profound 9000-Needles-Poster_OM-Timesimpact on the viewer – and equally profound implications about our American healthcare system. It is the story of Devin Dearth. The film’s website introduces Dearth’s life elegantly. “At forty years old, Devin Dearth is a successful businessman, a loving husband, father of thre ...Read More

A Fierce Green Fire: The Battle for a Living Planet

September 11th, 2014

San Francisco Bay Area filmmaker Mark Kitchell (Berkeley in the Sixties) begins A Fierce Green Fire with this introduction: "The environmental movement is about nature versus humanity. It arose at a time when our industrial civilization has grown so powerful, it threatens the natural world on which we depend for survival. It has become the battle for a living planet." A  nearly two-hour history of t ...Read More

War Photographer

September 9th, 2014

g1_u31628_nachtwey4War Photographer is Christian Frei’s portrait of veteran photojournalist James Natchwey who covers wars, poverty and other places of strife. Frie’s camera follows Natchwey on assignment, at his workshop, and those who speak of Natchwey ...Read More