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

All The Queen’s Horses: Small Town. Large Fraud. Global Problem.

Antisocial Personality Disorder: The presence of a chronic and pervasive disposition to disregard and violate the rights of others. Manifestations include repeated violations of the law, exploitation of others, deceitfulness, impulsivity, aggressiveness, reckless disregard for the safety of self and others, and irresponsibility, accompanied by lack of guilt, remorse, and empathy. It is among the most heavily researched of the personality disorders—a

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Antarctica: In the Footsteps of the Emperor

Antarctica: In the Footsteps of the Emperor contains three films on a 2-DVD set: “Antarctica: In the Footsteps of the Emperor” /// “Antarctica: Living on the Edge

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A Good American: The Odyssey of William Binney

Buried within the terabytes of data at one or more of Netflix’s server farms is the most incendiary documentary film I’ve seen to date: A Good American—a film about malfeasance, corruption, and ineptitude at our National Security Agency, and above. Director Friedrich Moser tells the story of a tragically terminated NSA program called ThinT

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The Farthest: Voyager In Space

Prologue: It is rare that I play a movie at home and not press pause. I did not press pause, nor avert my attention as I watched Emer Reynolds’ The Farthest—his feature documentary about the Voyager ...Read More

ACORN and the Firestorm: The Brief Tumultuous History of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now

“I think there’s bigger fish to fry out there than them.” Travis Munnerlyn In ACORN and the Firestorm, directors Reuben Atlas and Samuel D. Pollard present the history of ACORN focusing on the surreptitious video recording by Hannah Giles and James O'Keefe of a staged attempt to secure support from the organization in the creation of a brothe

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The Work: Intensive Group Therapy at Folsom Prison

“So, let’s remember Don, he talked about the intent. Right there, next to the wound, right there, next to the pain. When we go deep, when we go down to the bottom, right there next to where we hurt the most is where our medicine is at. Let’s remember that.” Group Therapy Participant at Folsom Prison Thirty miles north east of Sacramento, California, in an area called Represa, lies the legendary maximum security Folsom State Prison. Inside the prison is another

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Bird of Prey: Saving the Rarest and Largest Eagle on Earth

Eric Liner’s Bird of Prey covers herculean efforts to save the endangered Philippine eagle. There is very little old forest left in the Philippines. Consequently, the numbers of this magnificent avian creature are estimated between 100 and 800 individuals. Neil Rettig is the film’s central human character. In 1977, he provided the first moving i

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Strangers on the Earth: Walking the Camino

Triston Cook’s first feature documentary—Strangers on this Earth—introduces the uninitiated viewer to El Camino de Santiago, a ...Read More

Five Seasons: The Gardens of Piet Oudolf

“For me, garden design isn’t just about plants, it is about emotion, atmosphere, a sense of contemplation. You try to move people with what you do. You look at this, and it goes deeper than what you see. It reminds you of something in the genes—nature, or the longing for nature.” – Piet Oudolf” Five Seasons is a documentary film for p

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Morgenthau: Three Men. Three Generations. One Fight

Released in 2015, 7th Art’s Morgenthau is one of a countless number of documentaries that deserve a much wider audience. The film is both a series of history lessons that encompass three centuries, and profiles of three noble human beings: Henry Morgenthau Senior, United States Ambassador to the Ottoman Empire; Henry Morgenthau Junior, United

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