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    Secondary Hivemind Nexus jaguar skills's Avatar
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    Sep 2012
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    Documentary recommendations

    I've been on a bit of a documentary spree on Netflix lately. Can't get enough of them. Problem is, the recommendation algorithm is absolute dogshit so it always takes ages for me to find the next hit.

    Anyone got some gems I may have missed? Region isn't an issue, doesn't have to be limited to the UK selection.

    I'll throw out a few that I enjoyed to kick things off;

    Into The Abyss - Werner Herzog interviews a guy due to be executed in a week for an awful crime, and also talks to others caught up in the aftermath

    Happy People - Werner Herzog again, spending a year with some of the most remote people on earth as they hunt and survive in an incredibly hostile part of Siberia

    Knuckle - A documentary spanning 20+ years of feuding between two Irish traveller families and the fights between their bare knuckle boxers

    The Act of Killing - Gangsters involved in the violence of Indonesias communist hunt in the 60's/70's recreate their crimes on camera, possibly one of the most disturbing pieces of work I've seen (yeah, I'm just all butterflies and sunshine)

    Mirage Men - Looking at the possibility that most, if not all of the alien mythology coming out of the US over the last 60 years has been the result of government misinformation to cover up the far more crucial information about advanced weaponry testing. This one was very special as I had all sorts of baggage going in and yet it still surprised me and confronted certain predispositions I had about the subject.

    Cocaine Cowboys / Cocaine Cowboys 2 - The first is an amazing study of the Florida cocaine boom in the eighties, it focusses mainly on the smugglers, dealers and hitmen involved and talks briefly about the woman overseeing it all who makes Scarface look like a pussycat. The second documentary somehow manages to be at least as fascinating as, from jail, the same woman starts a relationship with a young drug dealer from Oakland. Don't want to give anything away but both pieces are hypnotic.

    Dogtown and Z-Boys / Bones Brigade / Waiting for Lightning - Pretty much essential viewing if you've ever had a passing interest in skateboarding but riveting even if not. The first is about the 70's skateboarding scene and the California-based surfers who transformed it from a 60's fad to near enough the machine it is today. Bones Brigade picks up the story in the 80's, when a member of that original group put together another team featuring kids who would go on to be icons in the sport (Tony Hawk and Rodney Mullen being two of the best known). Finally, Waiting for Lightning is about 90's - present icon Danny Way and his quest to jump over Chinas Great Wall. All brilliant for different reasons, but each great insights into the sort of obsessive, insane mind it takes to be the best at your chosen field.

    Ayahuasca Vine of the Soul - A documentary exploring the spiritual shortcut possible with DMT, a powerful hallucinogen used in ceremonies for hundreds of years in Peru. It's become popular with westerners seeking enlightenment through the least amount of work possible, and apparently acts as a purging process for the soul. Whatever your opinion on that sort of thing, it's an interesting watch.

    Cosmos - The new one, with Neil Tyson. I don't think anyone will spend this much money on proper educational TV for a long time, so make the most of it and watch it!

    Inequality for All - Essentially a lecture, but structured to be easy to digest and fun to watch. It's about how the structure of the USA has gradually eroded, resulting in economic and political dysfunction. It's very left-leaning (probably not too much of a problem around here), but eloquently argued. I'd be interested to see a companion piece done by one of those Randian libertarian nutters.

    Right, I think that gives you an idea of where my tastes are. What shall I watch next?
    Last edited by jaguar skills; Today at 07:12 PM.
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