Film Review: The Present-Day Consciousness of ‘Selma’

By: Sunday January 11, 2015 1:12 pm

A present-day social consciousness flows throughout this chronicle of the period in 1965, when Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. led a nonviolent campaign in Selma, Alabama, to secure the right to vote for blacks. And, although King may be the focus, the story does not deify King but shows that the small acts of hundreds [...]

Film Review: ‘These Birds Walk’ Immerses Viewers in Life of Runaway Boys in Pakistan

By: Sunday January 19, 2014 10:15 am

The feature documentary centers on The Edhi Home and Ambulance Foundation in Pakistan, a highly respected philanthropic organization in Pakistan and part of a social welfare system pioneered by Abdul Sattar Edhi, sometimes called “Father Teresa of Pakistan.” Edhi has spent decades helping unwanted or runaway children. The film opens with eighty-six year-old Edhi washing [...]

The Dissenter’s Top Films of 2013

By: Sunday December 29, 2013 11:11 am

Throughout the year, I see many films, and, whenever I have the time after viewing a film to produce a review, I do because I enjoy writing about films. Like a number of others, it has become a tradition of mine to put together a list of ten top films at this time of year. [...]

Film Review: ‘Act of Killing’ & What Happens to Society Unwilling to Confront History of War Crimes

By: Sunday August 4, 2013 10:03 am

This documentary is one of the most surreal yet unflinching attempts to understand how mass murderers are able to walk freely without facing justice or accountability for their actions, even decades after the atrocities they have committed. It also explores how this impunity can affect the history which children learn and pervert the future of [...]

Film Review: ‘Dirty Wars’ Is a Fine Effort to Bring America’s Shadow Wars Into the Light

By: Friday May 31, 2013 11:28 am

Journalist Jeremy Scahill’s film, Dirty Wars, is an effort to give Americans a peek at how the United States government is fighting the global war on terrorism in the shadows. It is also a plea to Americans to confront what their government is doing and challenge the justification for operations, which Congress is reluctant to scrutinize [...]

‘We Steal Secrets’ Documentary Focuses on Personalities of Assange, Manning Over Significance of WikiLeaks

By: Thursday May 23, 2013 12:22 pm

Academy Award-winning director Alex Gibney held a special screening for his new documentary, We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks, in Washington, DC, on May 21. Gibney also participated in a question and answer session after the film that was moderated by POLITICO‘s Josh Gerstein. First, the title reinforces widespread perceptions created by the United States government [...]

Film Review: ‘At Any Price’ Explores What Corporatization of Agriculture Has Done to the Family Farmer

By: Sunday May 5, 2013 11:48 am

The American Dream leads most Americans to believe they are entitled to prosperity and success. Some feel they are more entitled to that prosperity and success than others. Some also are more willing to toil for that prosperity and success. If one is handed down prosperity and success, there is an even greater weight to [...]

Robert Greenwald’s ‘War on Whistleblowers’ Shows Importance of Preserving Press Freedom

By: Tuesday April 16, 2013 5:33 pm

In a small auditorium at the Newseum in Washington, DC, Brave New Films director Robert Greenwald held the premiere of his new documentary, “War on Whistleblowers: Free Press and the National Security State.” It features four stories of men who are clear examples of whistleblowers that most Americans would think deserve protection when exposing government [...]

The Vigilantism of ‘Zero Dark Thirty’

By: Sunday January 13, 2013 11:15 am

The Oscar-nominated film Zero Dark Thirty depicting the hunt for Osama bin Laden opened everywhere in the United States this weekend. Coincidentally, the date it opened was also the eleventh year anniversary of the opening of the Guantanamo Bay prison. Much has been written about the film throughout the past month, particularly how it shows [...]

Film Review: ‘Rampart’ Deftly Explores the Character of a Corrupt Cop

By: Saturday February 25, 2012 12:26 pm

Undercover LAPD officer Frank Lyga, a white cop, has already shot and killed Kevin Gaines, an off-duty black LAPD officer, in a road rage shootout. LAPD officer David Mack has already been arrested for his involvement in the robbery of  a Bank of America branch. LAPD officer Brian Hewitt, who was part of the Community [...]

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