Tonight we continue with our look at the "Netflix 6," the six major releases that Netflix has staggered out over the course of the fall, both in theatres and on their streaming service, in an aggressive bid for next year's Academy Awards. Last year they nearly grabbed the proverbial brass ring with Roma, scoring the most … Continue reading DownStream – Netflix and Shill, Part 2
I'm really running low on "doc" puns at this point. Anyway, tomorrow the Academy announces its shortlists for several categories outside the main ballot, including Documentary Feature. Since the list of submissions was announced, I've tried to find time to view as many that are available as possible. Sadly, at the moment I'm working two … Continue reading DownStream – Doc Around the Clock
Last year was a tremendous boon for Netflix when it came to the Oscar stage. The success of Roma (as well as The Ballad of Buster Scruggs to a lesser extent, not to mention a slew of documentaries over the years), followed by the Academy's rebuke of traditionalists like Steven Spielberg emboldened the world's premiere streaming … Continue reading DownStream – Netflix and Shill, Part 1
We're just about to wrap up the first half of 2019, so before we officially hit the midway point, this is as good a time as any to go DownStream and take a look at some recent streaming fare. On deck this time are four documentaries dealing with people and events that help reshape the … Continue reading DownStream – Fight the Power Couple
Welcome to the newest feature of "I Actually Paid to See This," which I call, "DownStream!" I've been thinking about doing this for a while. From about the midway point of last year, the majority of my "Back Row Thoughts" columns ended up being devoted to miniature reviews of documentaries and streaming films, which was … Continue reading DownStream: Sex, Drugs, and Rock & Roll
Well folks, I finally did it. As of Monday I have completed the Documentary Feature shortlist. No matter which five films are nominated next Tuesday, I will have seen and processed them. It turns out that the reason I could see them all was through an Academy program called "Oscars Spotlight: Documentaries." It's a new … Continue reading Back Row Thoughts – Achievement Unlocked!
There are 15 films that have been shortlisted for the Documentary Feature Oscar. When the list was announced, I had seen a grand total of three. I have endeavored each of the last two years to see all 15 potential nominees before they're announced at the end of January, as it tends to be a … Continue reading Back Row Thoughts – The To-Doc List
As Awards Season kicks itself into high gear, there's an overwhelming glut of movies to watch, especially now, in the age of streaming services. Filmmakers and content creators from all over the world have more outlets than ever to get their work to the masses, and into consideration for the industry's highest honors. It's in … Continue reading Back Row Thoughts: Chillin’ with Netflix
My apologies for not updating over the last couple of weeks. I'm in the middle of a new assignment which has required long hours, so not only do I have limited time to write, but there's less and less time to actually see new movies. There are two new reviews coming this week, but in … Continue reading Back Row Thoughts: More Docs in the Stream
It should come as no surprise that I like documentaries. I've reviewed quite a few on here already, and I obsessed over the challenge of seeing all 15 short-listed feature docs before the Oscar nominations even came out (I fell one short - sonofabitch!). I concede that I don't know much about the craft or … Continue reading Back Row Thoughts – What’s Up, Docs?