The Innocence Files trailer

Being locked up for something you didn’t do is one of the most terrifying things imaginable, but it’s a harsh reality for untold numbers of people in this country thanks to systemic problems in our justice system. Now a new Netflix documentary series called The Innocence Files wants to put a spotlight on those injustices. The series, which is directed by people like Alex Gibney (Going Clear), Liz Garbus (Lost Girls), Roger Ross Williams (Life, Animated), and other high-profile documentarians, focuses on members of The Innocence Project as the organization works to overturn eight wrongful convictions across the country. Check out the trailer below.
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Life Animated Trailer

Almost everyone has memories of growing up watching Disney movies. Whether it was in theaters or on VHS, the animated movies of Walt Disney Pictures have touched billions. But for one young man, they helped him cope with autism and connect to a world that he struggled to understand.

Life, Animated tells the story of Owen Suskind, an outgoing child who suddenly showed signs of autism at a young age. The documentary tells his life story as we follow Owen, now a twentysomething young man, as he sets out to live in his own apartment for the first time. And in this story, we see how Disney movies changed his life by way of clips from the movies, reenactment by Owen himself, and some gorgeous original animation as well. Watch the Life Animated trailer after the jump. Read More »

Green Band Trailer

Trailers are an under-appreciated art form insofar that many times they’re seen as vehicles for showing footage, explaining films away, or showing their hand about what moviegoers can expect. Foreign, domestic, independent, big budget: What better way to hone your skills as a thoughtful moviegoer than by deconstructing these little pieces of advertising? This week we ingest the latest Frank Zappa documentary ahead of Alex Winter’s Kickstarted one, a look at an autistic boy who found sanctuary in Disney, try to make sense of something nearly senseless, break out the spray paint, and try to help women feel comfortable in whatever skin they’re in. 

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Life, Animated

Life, Animated is a joyful film about the true power of cinema. Movies are not disposable entertainment but stories that have the power to inspire and dramatically change our lives. Academy Award-winning documentary filmmaker Roger Ross Williams tells the story of an autistic boy named Owen Suskind who re-learned language and found understanding through Disney animated movies.
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Some of the best filmmaking stories involve fueds, and while the run-up to the Oscars in the press was largely concerned with the constructed narrative of Cameron vs. Bigelow, it was a smaller but far more real conflict that took center stage for a moment.

In an Oscar telecast that was noticeably light on dramatic moments, one odd near-confrontation really stands out. When the Oscar was presented to the creator of Music by Prudence, winner in the documentary short category, director/producer Roger Ross Williams took the stage, only to be forcibly interrupted by producer Elinor Burkett, who wrestled the mic away from Williams to make her own speech. What was that all about? Turns out the duo aren’t exactly copacetic, and that there is some difference of opinion as to who is more important to the film’s genesis. Read More »