July 2011

Summer Doc Reviews: Caves, Cowboys and Coke

Senior film critic Kurt Brokaw reviews three recent documentaries: Cave of Forgotten Dreams, Buck, and Hit So Hard.


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Horses from Werner Herzog's Caves of Forgotten Dreams.

A new landscape for Herzog, natural horsemanship by a legendary whisperer, and indie rock percussion and recovery by a woman who has done a lot of living. Kurt Brokaw gives his take on three docs playing this summer: Cave of Forgotten Dreams, Buck, and Hit So Hard: The Life and Near Death Story of Patty Schemel.

Cave of Forgotten Dreams
(Werner Herzog. 2010. France/Canada/USA/UK/Germany. 90 min.)

Just Like Us: The Truth About Light

Writer Lisa Pegram considers her friend Ahmed Ahmed's new documentary, "Just Like Us," relative to her own journeys.


Ahmed Ahmed takes comedy to the Middle East and back in "Just Like Us."

What happens when a friend accomplishes something huge, like finishing his film, when you're still struggling to find your own artistic way? Ahmed Ahmed's new documentary about comedy in the Middle East inspired poet and memoirist Lisa Pegram in more ways than one.

Late one night in early June, I was devouring a novel by candlelight after forgetting, for the third time in a week, to buy bulbs. The room was dim and though it was hell on my eyes, the poet in me was charmed by the whole feel of it. I took a short break to make the book last and contemplate a shadow in a far corner, when the room brightened with the flash of a text message on my cell phone.

It's Alive!

Doc filmmaker Chris Paine assures viewers and environmentalists--the electric car was just taking a very long nap.


The Chevy Volt makes an appearance in "Revenge," as do vehicles converted by motivated car owners.

If you thought the electric car died a slow, tragic death, you're right. And if you're like filmmaker Chris Paine, who helped document its demise in Who Killed the Electric Car? or the inventors and advocates in his new film, Revenge of the Electric Car then you believe, beyond a shadow of the doubt, electric can and will power vehicles of the future. Read what Paine told the The Independent's Katherine Brodsky after his film premiered.

Director Chris Paine is back with a follow-up to his highly touted documentary, Who Killed the Electric Car?, which celebrated the birth and mourned the death of the electric car. With help from a cast of unwavering advocates, Paine resurrects the vehicle in Revenge of the Electric Car.

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