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 Post—https://marinpost.org/
You can access Don’s Personal Historian services at:
When Jon Betz and Taggart Siegel make a film, it is a must-see. They’ve given us The Real Dirt on Farmer John and Queen of the Sun—strong, hard-hitting films about agriculture.
Their latest, Seed: The Untold Story, is both inspiring and demoralizing.
The unhappy yet predictable aspec
Joseph Dorman’s and Oren Rudavsky’s documentary, Colliding Dreams is an objective exploration of the core Middle East conflict between Israel and its neighbors. The filmmakers use the ideas and history of Zionism as their springboard into this seemingly unending and hopeless conflict.
Directed by narrative filmmaker Asif Kapadia, Senna is a biography of Brazilian Formula One racing legend Ayrton Senna. There are different approaches to or philosophies of documentary film production. Kapadia chose the track less traveled—he used archival footage exclusively to tell the
It is so easy to become inured to the travails of our world—necessary, some might say, in order to maintain one’s sanity.
Our planet’s human population is rapidly approaching 9 billion. Hundreds of millions—if not more—already live in abject poverty. Economic, political, and social injustice reign supreme around the Earth. War and strife are endemic—
Judy Irving, the producer/director/cinematographer/editor of the wildly successful The Wild Parrots of Telegraph Hill has given us another delightful avian-based documentary, ...Read More
Fogo Island is a small island, off a larger island, off the coast of Canada’s Newfoundland.
Todd Saunders grew up there, as did Zita Cobb.
Saunders is an architect who now lives in Norway. Cobb found success in her professional life, and wanted to benefit the people, community, and Island of Fogo.
The island’s economy was based upon fish. Like many seas arou
Director Shalini Kantayya’s Catching the Sun addresses global warming and economic inequities by focusing on the use of solar power to reduce and eventually eliminate fossil fuels—more jobs, less pollution.
Liberal icon Van Jones embodies the film’s thesis with the concept of ‘green
Spring Hurlbut is a successful artist, as is Arnaud Maggs. The two share the love of a lifetime.
Produced by Marcia Connolly, David Craig, and Katherine Knight, Spring and Arnaud explores their professional biographies, their work, and their love story. Being a card-carrying philis
“The United States has become a national security state whose raisin d’etre is war. We’ve created a terrorist-industrial complex that is self-perpetuating, and now—searching for the reason for this constant state of war—terrorism is the perfect case for us. We can do this forever.”
Col. Lawrence Wilkerson
Chief of Staff to Secretary of State Colin Powell, 2002-2005
Written and directed by Tonje Hessen Sch
Veteran filmmaker Nelson George’s A Ballerina’s Tale tells the dramatic story of African American ballerina Misty Copeland who broke multiple barriers in the rarefied world of professional ballet—and found pop stardom along the way. In addition to the racial barrier, she broke morphological barriers with her curvy muscular physique.
In 2013, in the midst of her exciting ascent,