Das Reichsorchester (doc. 2007) Enrique Sánchez Lansch

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The Reichsorchestra: The Berlin Philharmonic and the Third Reich (Doc. 2007) Enrique Sánchez Lansch
Digital Concert Hall; Arthaus Musik Blu-ray (1:30)

It’s always difficult for people in the arts to continue to produce great art in the midst of a totalitarian regime, but that’s exactly what happened to the world-renowned Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra in 1933 when it was taken over and placed under Nazi control. Most orchestras – even the great ones like Berlin – have had times of struggle and in a strange way, Nazi control offered stability, but at a huge price.

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The Beatles: Eight Days a Week – The Touring Years (doc. 2016) Ron Howard

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The Beatles: Eight Days a Week (Doc. 2016) Ron Howard
Hulu streaming (1:45)

The Beatles: Eight Days a Week is still in theaters, but you can now stream it exclusively on Hulu, which I did tonight. If you’ve been a Beatles fan for decades (like me), you probably think you’ve already seen it all. Some experts have guessed that hardcore fans have already seen at least 90% of the footage in the new documentary, but you know we’re going to watch for that 10%. (Heck, I’d watch for 1%.)

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The Barkley Marathons: The Race That Eats Its Young (doc. 2014) Annika Iltis, Timothy James Kane

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The Barkley Marathons: The Race That Eats Its Young (doc. 2014)
Directed by Annika Iltis, Timothy James Kane
Netflix streaming (1:29)

The Barkley Marathons may be the oddest documentary I’ve ever seen. While watching it, I struggled with how much of the film was possibly being manipulated by the filmmakers, then at a certain point, I – like many of the runners in the film – quit thinking and just plowed ahead. Unlike the marathons themselves, this is a film that’s nearly impossible to stop watching once you’ve started it. It may also teach you things about yourself you’d rather not know.

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Annapolis Film Festival 2015 Final Report

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The 2015 Annapolis Film Festival was a very good experience and one that I would recommend to any film lover (especially in the Washington DC area). I had previously attended and enjoyed the first festival in 2013 (and missed 2014), but this year was several notches higher in organization, quality, and enjoyment. I look forward to seeing this festival grow even more in the coming years. The organizers are to be congratulated for a job well done.

The first three films are reviewed in full via the links provided. Unfortunately, time permitted me to write only capsule reviews of the other films. I hope you’ll find a few films here to seek out.

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