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

It’s Criminal: “If I Was Born Nicki, I Would Be in Jail”

That’s one of the statements made by a Dartmouth student about her experience participating in a unique program created by Dartmouth Professor Pati Hernandez. The summer program brings female students together with incarcerated females to produce a play based on the experiences of the prisoners. This year’s program—covered by Sig

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An American Conscience: The Reinhold Niebuhr Story

An American Conscience is an hour-long documentary introducing the work and—especially—person of theologian Reinhold Niebuhr. The inspiration for this documentary is both the power and impact of Neibuhr’s expressions, and the filmmaker’s intention to expand awareness

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Tower: One Day in August

From the film’s website: “On August 1st, 1966, a sniper rode the elevator to the top floor of the University of Texas Tower and opened fire, holding the campus hostage for 96 minutes. When the gunshots were finally silenced, the toll included 16 dead, three dozen wounded, and a shaken nation left trying to understand.” Keith Maitland’s Tower tells stories of those who surv

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Moving from Emptiness: The Life and Art of a Zen Dude

Moving from Emptiness profiles Alok Hsu Kwang-han who is called a ‘Zen calligraphic painter.’ The phrase is way too small. He is a teacher of Zen Buddhism, an artist, and workshop leader. But those words do not come close to capturing who he really

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The Business of Amateurs: Degree Not Included

student-athlete (n): an unrecognized profession where pain and gain are mutually exclusive. There are a fount of adjectives to describe college sports in the United States of America: Unjust, Immoral, Unethical, Dangerous, Risky, Unhealthy, Tragic—and having just viewed Bob DeMars The Business of Amateurs—add the no

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Forced Perspective: A Profile of Artist Derek Hess

If you’re an extremely talented, massively prolific, and commercially successful artist like Derek Hess, you want your documentarian to do justice to yourself and your work—to mirror the passion and dedication and authenticity you bring to your work, and consequently, to those who view it. That’s just what director/editor Nick Cavalier has done for Cleveland-based Hess with his film, ...Read More

Casablancas: The Man Who Loved Women

‘In May 2011,’ the film begins, ‘John Casablancas met his friend Hupert Woroniecki in New York City. They spent three days locked in a studio and recorded his life story. What neither knew at the time was that John would die of cancer two years later, in 2013—making this recording a unique posthumous testimony on one of our most glamorous eras.’ Casablancas ...Read More

Homeland: Iraq Year Zero

“No way to live in peace, not under Sadam, not after him.” A distinguished Iraqi gentleman as he views a collaterally destroyed home. France-based Iraqi filmmaker Abbas Fahdel has single-handedly produced a monumental documentary film. Homeland: Iraq Yea

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The Mama Sherpas: Midwives Across America

Brigid Maher’s The Mama Sherpas introduces the practice of nurse-midwives. The film covers their work in four birthing centers. The primary purpose is to promote this work and, in so doing, help reduce the number of unnecessary Cesarean births—and humanize our approach to the birthing proc

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Sound of Redemption: The Frank Morgan Story

The Kino Lorber Sound of Redemption disc was one of a pile of ten recently-received DVDs. I nonchalantly got to the disc, and found myself unexpectedly moved by this story of a troubled master. Frank Morgan lived a life of cr

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