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

The Many Sad Fates of Mr. Toledano

Phillip Toledano is a prolific multi-media artist. Very multi-media, very prolific. Here is his CV. sad-fatesThe Many Sad Fates of Mr. Toledano is filmmaker Joshua Seftel’s faithful coverage of iconic photographer Phillip Toledano’s three-year-long

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The Red Pill: Cassie Jaye’s Fall Down the Rabbit Hole

In my introduction to Telling Their Own Stories: Conversations with Documentary Filmmakers I compared the watching of documentaries to taking The Matrix’s ‘red pill’ the act of which indicates the taker is committed to seeing the world as it is—not as they imagine or wish, just as it is. captureCassie Jaye’s latest release, The Red Pill, is well-titled

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The Best Democracy Money Can Buy: A Tale of Billionaires & Ballot Bandits

greg-palast-3Written, directed, and starring Greg Palast, The Best Democracy Money Can Buy is another look at the usurpation of the United States’ government—and many states’ governments—by the wealthy and powerful. The film is as entertaining as it is infuriating. Palast portrays an amalgam of journalist an

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Talent Has Hunger: Seven Students, Seven Years

jackie-plays-at-the-juries_cuJosh Aronson’s Talent Has Hunger follows legendary cello teacher Paul Katz and a group of students over a period of seven years. The film is a rare opportunity and treat to experience the depth and breadth of skills required to master an instrument, and the dedication it takes to stay with the challenges

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How to Dance in Ohio: ‘We like to socialize, but we don’t know how.’

Whatever the etiology, the number of children who develop autism has increased dramatically, if not exponentially. This tragic phenomenon has created an inevitable subculture—with micro-cultures within that subculture. One of those sub-subcultures is individuals ‘on the higher functioning end of the autism spectrum.’ htdio-still-5How to Dance in Ohio follows a

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You See Me: Forgiveness Is Relative

stanley-natalie-linda-and-susan-brown-reading-pa-scaledYou See Me is a documentary film about the filmmaker’s family. Veteran documentarian Linda J. Brown tells her family’s story. She is searching for meaning, understanding, and resolution in the lifelong dynamics of this family. Her father, Stanley, is the central characte

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Shamans of the Global Village

Directed by Niles Heckman and hosted by Rak Razam, Shamans of the Global Village covers the resurgence of shamanistic practices in the West. Each episode will cover a shaman and a particular ethnogenic medicine she or he incorporates in their practice. The series’ planned episodes are listed below. sgv_bio_namastdave-3The first episode—premier date is October

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Enter the Faun: The Transformation of Gregg Mozgala

First Run Features’ Enter the Faun is about two subjects: The creation of a dance piece and the transformation of Gregg Mozgala’s body and mind. Mozgala is an actor, playwright, artistic director, and has cerebral palsy. enter-the-faunTamar

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In Search of the Great Song: Fifty voices. Twelve Countries. One Question

Alex3photo‘the Great Song’ in Michael Stillwater’s beatific In Search of the Great Song is a metaphor, a reference to the sacred, to the spiritual connections with our world, to the grace and dignity of nature, and to the power of music, voice and sound.   ...Read More

Requiem for the American Dream: Noam Chomsky and Ten Principles of Concentration of Wealth & Power

unspecifiedFimmakers Peter D. Hutchison, Kelly Nyks and Jared P. Scott have taken interviews of legendary author/speaker/activist Noam Chomsky and woven them into a coherent narrative of the corruption of our American socio-economic-political systems. In addition to being a requiem, the film is also a post mortem—descriptions of the strategies and tactics that have transformed the United States of America into an oligarchy. The Ten Principles are: Reduce Democ

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