Tuesday, October 22, 2013

What people are saying...

Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall challenges preconceptions about inmates and prison life in surprising and hopeful ways. Barens reveals the heart of humanity beating loud and strong within the harshest environments.

Faced with living and dying inside, the inmates we meet have chosen to live in community with one another. The commitment of the inmate hospice volunteers – and the competence and reverence with which they provide care – shows that dying people’s comfort and dignity can be preserved even in the least desirable situations. Our society could learn a lot from the example they set. A triumph of documentary filmmaking!
Ira Byock, MD, palliative care physician and a Professor of Medicine, Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth; author of Dying Well and The Best Care Possible.

Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall transcends classification; it is more than a film about prison, and suffering or death.  It is a deeply layered story of how the human spirit overcomes the greatest fear of all prisoners - the degradation and isolation of dying alone in prison. This stunning film helps us to gain compassion for those that we both fear and ostracize. 
Susan Rosenberg - Human rights activist, adjunct professor, award-winning writer

Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall shows us both the pain and the humanity of life behind prison walls. In doing so, it gets beyond the day-to-day politics of crime and punishment, and challenges us to think about how we can bring out the best in all of us, even those who may have committed terrible acts in their lives. 
Marc Mauer - Executive Director of The Sentencing Project and author of Race to Incarcerate
Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall is an insightful and sensitive documentary. Barens, given a rare opportunity to film within the correctional institution, makes the most of this opportunity. Viewers will undoubtedly marvel at the profound working relationships between prison staff and inmate volunteers.
Russ Immarigeon - Editor of Offender Programs Report

Thursday, October 17, 2013


Oscars: Eight Documentary Short Subjects Make the List

Forty films were submitted, and three to five of them will earn nominations.

October 10, 2013 - The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' documentary branch has selected a short list of eight documentary short films that will compete for the 86th Academy Awards.

The eight films were chosen from 40 eligible entries. Three to five films will be nominated in the documentary short subject category when nominations are announced Jan. 16

The eight films, listed in alphabetical order by title, with their production companies, are:
CaveDigger, Karoffilms. Jeffrey Karoff's film tells of Ra Paulette, an artist who digs cathedral-like caves in the sandstone cliffs of New Mexico.

Facing Fear, Jason Cohen Productions. Jason Cohen's directorial debut centers a gay man, who was attacked by a gang of neo-Nazis as a teen, and encounters one of his attackers 25 years later. 

Jujitsu-ing Reality, Sobini Films. Chetin Chabuk's documentary focuses on a screenwriter, Scott Lew, dealing with Lou Gehrig's disease.

Karama Has No Walls, Hot Spot Films. Yemeni-Scot filmmaker Sara Ishaq looks at one tragic day during the 2011 Yemeni revolution.

The Lady in Number 6: Music Saved My Life, Reed Entertainment. Malcolm Clarke's film is a portrait of 109 year-old holocaust survivor Alice Herz Sommer, who offers her views on how to live a long and happy life. Clarke, along with Bill Guttentag, won the Oscar in this category in 1989 for You Don't Have To Die.

Prison Terminal: The Last Days of Private Jack Hall, Prison Terminal LLC. Shot over a six-month period at Iowa State Penitentiary, Edgar Barens' doc looks at the final months in the life of a terminally ill prisoner.

Recollections, Notrac Productions. Nathanael Carton's film concerns survivors of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami.

SLOMO, Big Young Films and Runaway Films. Joshua Izenberg's film follows Dr. John Kitchin, a neurologist who abandons his career to take up rollerblading along the Pacific Coast.