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—

Don also contributes film reviews and filmmaker profiles to CineSource Magazine online—

His weekly film review appears in The Marin Post

Don’s actor resumé, voice samples, and reel may be found at:

You can access Don’s Personal Historian services at:

You can find, and Like Don’s official Facebook page at

Old Dog: A Profile of Shepherd Paul Sorenson

“I am eternally in a state of bewildered awe as to what they are capable of. I never look at the individual dog and say ‘what a clever dog.’ To me, it’s the dog/shepherd unit that’s most impressive.” Dr. Nick Cave, Massey University, New Zealand. New Zealander Paul Sorenson had his fair share of an unhappy childhood, yet he found solace and healing in dogs. Sorenson began training sheepdogs at the age of 14. In adulthood he and wife Honey purchased a large

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Bathtubs Over Broadway: The Transformation of Steve Young

The title Bathtubs Over Broadway, may, like the film it represents, seem cutesy and quirky, but this documentary has a serious subtext—the profound story arc of Steve Young’s fairy-tale journey through dark humor, into joy and compassion. A writer on ‘The Late Night with David Letterman’ for 25 years,

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Into the Okavango: A Harrowing, Life Changing Expedition

‘The Okavango Delta is one of the largest freshwater wetlands in southern Africa, the main source of water for a million people, and one of Africa’s richest places for biodiversity. Since 2015, National Geographic Fellow Dr. Steve Boyes and an interdisciplinary team of scientists and explorers have been surveying the river system and working to protect the Okavango watershed.’ __________________________________________________     “Whe

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The Rest I Make Up: Maria Irene Fornes

“I don’t know of any playwright more intuitive, more reliant on taking stuff from the unconscious, and letting that create form.” Edward Albee The Rest I Make Up has three characters.

  1. Cuban-American Maria Irene Fornes (May 14, 1930 – October 30, 2018), is the legendary off-Broadway playwright who wrote

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Satan & Adam: The Epic Odysseys of Sterling Magee and Adam Gussow

“I realized very early, this is the best gig I’m ever going to have.” Adam Gussow Films—fiction or nonfiction—do not get any more inspiring than Satan & Adam. Director V. Scott Balcerek tells the story of African American Sterling Magee and Caucasian Adam Gussow who spent 12 years as a duo writing and performing blues

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Dog’s Best Friend: The Life and Dogs of Jacob Leezak

“The only reason I’m on this Earth is to be with dogs. This is all I know. This is all I’ve ever known. This is all I want to know.”   Australia’s Jacob Leezak has had much more than his fair share of trauma. His life’s journey, however, carefully guided this big, strong man to the world of dogs. He founded and runs the ...Read More

RiverBlue: The Deaths and Rebirths of Rivers

“My dad, in the late sixties, brought home a photograph of Earth, as seen from outer space. And I was so impressed by it, but one, it made me realize, in the overall scheme of things, that our planet is quite small and quite finite. The other thing that was very noticeable is, I mean, clearly it’s a blue planet, but of all the water on this Earth, 97% is saline, it’s in the oceans, two percent is locked up in ice. That only leaves us one percent that’s found in

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Point of No Return: Flying Around the World on the Sun’s Power

Point of No Return tells and shows the story of Solar Impulse, the first solar powered airplane to fly around the world. The environmental demonstration project was created by Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg who took turns piloting the plane through the legs of its 505 day journey at an average speed of 45 MPH. The pla

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The Serengeti Rules: The Nature of Nature

Written and directed by veteran filmmaker Nicolas Brown, The Serengeti Rules tells the story of the discovery of keystone species—species that play a crucial role in

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Life in the Doghouse: Two Men and a Lotta Dogs

"We don't care if they adopt from us, we just want them to adopt. It's just saving lives." Ron Danta Four million animals a year are euthanized annually in the United States—primarily because of human carelessness and the greed of puppy mill operators. Companion and partners Ron Danta and Danny Robertshaw are doing anything and everything they possibly can to reduce that number. Their work was initially inspired when they rescued 600 dogs abandoned in

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