Thursday, January 13, 2011

Awards-Nazi Award nominations: Documentary

Best Documentary:

Catfish (Henry Joost, Ariel Schulman):
It starts as a suspicious online relationship that turns into a thrilling investigation that ends up a settled contemplation about what our digital age society and the people in it are all about. Speculations that it may be a hoax are beside the point, because it tells its story and delivers its message so effectively and entertainingly.

Exit Through the Gift Shop (Banksy):
A brilliantly edited, mercurial meditation on the nature of art, culture, and creative expression vs creative fakery. We never know what the film is really about until the final frames, just like we never really know whether it's a "real" documentary or an elaborate ruse. Whatever the answer, it remains an ingenious and hilarious work of art.

Inside Job (Charles Ferguson):
This searing expose on how Wall Street greed and irresponsibility lead to the global economic crisis of 2008 succeeds both as an enlightening lesson in the follies of the structure of our financial system and the people governing it, as well as a witty and compelling piece of entertainment that'll leave you both bemused an enraged.

Restrepo (Tim Hetherington, Sebastian Junger):
It's a miracle that this riveting documentary should even exist. It's a testament to the dedication and courage of Hetherington and Junger, who spent a year in the most dangerous place on earth to conduct an objective study of men at war. No political position is taken. The only concern is to observe the harrowing life of the American soldier.

Waste Land (Lucy Walker):
A stirring and inspiring tale of art and social responsibility, it's not hard to see why Waste Land brings festival audiences to their feet. The only thing more extraordinary than Vik Muniz's garbage creations is how profoundly they affect the lives of the people who inspired him. director Lucy Walker wisely avoids an formalism in telling a story as emotional as this.

Just missed: Countdown to Zero, Waiting for Superman, Gasland

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