From Trinidad to Australia, Kenya to Barbados, Canada, India and beyond, film-makers have captured the rich diversity of the Commonwealth. This edition looks at childhood. - BBC
* Forgotten Faces of Jamaica *
This ones about the modern social effects of past immigration, due to the slavery of European and Asian people migrating to the Caribbean and South America (aka the West Indies). Something I didn’t learn at school, surprise surprise. Mainly focusing on negative interactions with people of African decent, it may familiarise you with the types of behaviour we see internationally.
Here’s a more upbeat doc on the same topic, accounting the positive cultural influences the Irish and Jamaicans have had on one another, called * The Black Irish of Montserrat *. Not too sure about the soundtrack, although I suppose it was filmed in the 70s: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0QHYFXDGf4Y
And a little background research: http://www.ballinagree.freeservers.com/jamaica.html
"Tree" and "ting"… yep, you guessed it.
* Biracial Not Black Damn It *
A 10 part documentary series that explores the complexities of growing up biracial. Pt 1 & 2 are an up close view of the perception of being black when you have a parent that is white, or other than black. Biracial in America is the fastest growing population under 18, to self identify has become the message dictated by this new young generation that is proud of being all that they are, not excluding any parts.
In the UK we call it ‘half-caste’ which actually means half a person so that needs to stop. Theres also mixed-race and dual-heritage, which most of us are even if we don’t look it. People whos immediate family are interracial may not feel belonged because of others insecurities. It seems to be more of an issue in the US.
* Amy Winehouse: The Day She Came to Dingle *
"Back in 2006 on a stormy December night, Amy Winehouse flew to the remote, south-western corner of Ireland to perform for Other Voices, an acclaimed Irish TV music series filmed in Dingle every winter. Amy took to the stage of Saint James’s church, capacity 85, and wowed the small, packed crowd with a searing, acoustic set of songs from Back to Black.
After leaving the stage, a relaxed and happy Amy spoke about her music and influences - Mahalia Jackson, Sarah Vaughan, Ray Charles and the Shangri-Las to name a few. Arena joined forces with Other Voices and went to Dingle to catch up with some of the people that Amy met on that day, including taxi driver Paddy Kennedy, her bass player Dale Davis and Rev Mairt Hanley of the Other Voices church.
This film showcases not only Amy herself, but the musical geniuses that inspired her to forge her own jazz pop style” - BBC.
* RIZE *
"Before you can understand ‘krumping’ and ‘clowning’, you’ve got to understand the history and people of South Central Los Angeles. Director David LaChapelle opens his documentary, Rize, with news footage and images from the 1965 Watts riots and the 1992 Rodney King riots. Out of the violence and hate came Tommy the Clown, the hip-hop clown who got kids to stop fighting and start dancing. These ‘clown groups’ gave kids an alternative to gang life. Clown dancing grew, expanded, and evolved into an entirely new form of dance – ‘krumping’. It may look aggressive and violent, but it’s pure release, expression, and art. When LaChapelle shows footage of African tribal dancing, one can’t help but see the resemblance to ‘krump’ dancing, from the quick and deliberate body movements to the face paint, as if that dancing was in their blood. Rize gives these dancers something the rest of society has long denied them – dignity and respect." - Austin Movie Show
* ANONNYMOUS: THE STORY OF THE HACKTIVISTS *
This one’s all about immoral control versus justified chaos in the digital age.
* (A)SEXUAL *
Finally the expansive spectrum of sexuality is being explored in this doc. In a sex predatory world we live in its always refreshing to meet someone whose top priority isn’t bedroom activities in general. But there are levels of asexuality where people have lower sexual interests or no interest whatsoever, and may be more attracted to just meaningful, romantic relationships. It’s more proof that humans vary and it’s a shame that asexuals have been unknowingly ostracised in a world where sex sells. Maybe one day no one will have to ‘come out’ but just be able to describe themselves confidently in conversation.
* FREE SPEECH *
"The live current affairs debate show comes from Winchester in front of an audience of young people divided between those educated in the state system and those educated privately. In the run-up to the show viewers help set the agenda by voting for the questions they want to see debated on the show’s Facebook page, which are then discussed by the panel."
Granted it’s not a documentary but it’s still important. Other issues are the UK welfare system and the possible affects of porn. Here’s a doc on the latter: http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b040n2ph/porn-whats-the-harm
* SPOKEN WORD POETRY EMPOWERS STUDENTS TO USE AUTHENTIC VOICES *
Just a quick one. ‘Are schools enough?’ Well, no. Most/some(?) schools haven’t been the best at preparing us for the world so projects like this where one can express themselves are a must.
Over centuries we have become so used to categorising everything in order to make sense of it all that we suppressed any expression of being multifaceted. We then began to realise that an individual can possess many identities at different levels of expression that can change over time. For those who find this plurality a faulty existence of being, it is hard to do a kind of rational risk assessment in the mind, when such an analysis is fogged with fear and negative connotations associated with identities traditionally deemed contradicting.
"Documentary following three boys who have won New Foundation Scholarships to Eton College. In this first episode, the boys prepare for their new lives ahead."
Will edit this later as I’ve got loads of work to do. Goodness knows I need their discipline! Their college isn’t as elitist as we feared… today anyway.