Sundance special jury prize winner "Pussy Riot - A Punk Prayer" kicks off HBO's popular Summer Docs series next week. The latest edition of Indiewire's curation of Hulu's Documentaries page takes a look back at several other popular docs that the venerable brand has produced or presented in the past. Watch them now for free!
"Pussy Riot - A Punk Prayer"
- Andrew Jarecki's complex investigation of a family accused and convicted of child sexual abuse, "Capturing the Friedmans," won the grand jury prize at Sundance upon its world premiere in 2003. It was later nominated for the Academy Award for Best Documentary.
- Another award-winning portrait, John Landis' "Mr Warmth: The Don Rickles Project," premiered at the New York Film Festival in 2007 and went on to win an Emmy Award for Outstanding Variety, Music, or Comedy Special, as well as an Emmy for Rickles for Best Individual Performance. The film profiles the legendary insult comic with interviews and an overview of his screen and stage performances.
Dana Flor and Toby Oppenheimer take on a controversial figure in "The Nine Lives of Marion Barry." Their portrait of the Washington DC mayor who infamously lost his post amid a crack scandal, only to later reclaim his office, paints a full picture of a man typically presented in the media in broad strokes.
Andrew Jarecki's "Capturing The Friedmans."
- Also looking at a divisive subject, Matthew Galkin's "Kevorkian" profiles the infamous "Dr Death." The film follows Dr Jack Kevorkian after his parole from prison for practicing physician-assisted suicide, as he runs for Congress in Michigan in 2008 and combats public perception that he was a dealer in death.
- Alexander Olch also tries to separate truth and fiction in his attempt to finish his late mentor's film in "The Windmill Movie." After struggling for two decades to complete his film, Richard P Rogers died, leading his wife to recruit Olch to transform the footage into a singular exploration of Rogers' life.
- Finally, Kate Davis crafted a moving tribute to a captivating individual in "Southern Comfort." The film, a chronicle of the last year in the life of Robert Eads, a female to male transsexual suffering from untreated ovarian cancer, won the grand jury prize at its debut at Sundance in 2001.
EDITOR'S NOTE: "Indiewire @ Hulu Docs" is a regular column spotlighting the Iw-curated selections on Hulu's Documentaries page, a unique collaboration between the two sites. Be sure to check out the great non-fiction projects available to watch free of charge. Disclosure: Some of the selections are titles provided to Hulu by SnagFilms, the parent company of Indiewire.
ABOUT THE WRITER: Basil Tsiokos is a Programming Associate, Documentary Features for Sundance, Senior Programmer for DOC NYC, and a consultant to documentary filmmakers and festivals. Follow him on Twitter (@1basil1) and visit his blog (what (not) to doc).