Top Three Favorite Documentaries of 2016

Going behind the veil, finding the creative origins or making a statement that will change society as we know it, documentaries represent some of the most important and informative filmmaking. A true art form to present as full of a picture as possible surrounding the highs, lows and levels of each documentary topic.  2016 had its share of quality documentaries creating conversation, stoking memories and stirring controversy.  Here are three of my favorite documentaries from this year focusing on the life cycle of movie posters, trading cards and an infamous religious movement that all have affected generations after them. 

24X36: A MOVIE ABOUT MOVIE POSTERS - Directed by Kevin Burke

I had a chance to witness this incredible documentary at this year's FANTASTIC FEST and at the ITHACA FANTASTIK FILM FESTIVAL.  One of the best documentaries I have watched as well as one of the best overall films in 2016, 24X36: A MOVIE ABOUT MOVIE POSTERS is a detailed vision surrounding the birth, death and resurgence of one of the most crucial aspects of promotion for a film... the movie poster.  Blending the history of this art form into complete narrative, 24X36 offers generational perspectives of artists, collectors, fans, professionals and more very candid interviews from across the country as well as an incredible multi-media presentation that comes together like an impactful painting.  24X36: A MOVIE ABOUT MOVIE POSTERS is not only an entertaining experience but an educational one that cultivates humor, knowledge and the connection of what not only makes the experience of the movies unforgettable but what at the heart of the experience we can hold onto.  Kevin Burke's personal journey is a love letter to all those involved and it shows with every frame and moment of 24X36: A MOVIE ABOUT MOVIE POSTERS

Interview participants include: Filmmaker Joe Dante, Andrea Alvin, Artists Paul Ainsworth, David Byrd, Tracie Ching, Matthew Chojnacki, Thomas Hodge, Roger Kastel and Gary Pullin.

For more information visit http://24x36movie.com

30 YEARS OF GARBAGE: THE GARBAGE PAIL KIDS STORY - Directed by Joe Simko and Jeff Zapata

Breaking down the impact of one of the most unforeseen and truly changing events within the last four decades of trading cards and collectibles, artists and documentary creators Joe Simko and Jeff Zapata present a very personal and well-crafted narrative surrounding the birth, struggles, demise and rebirth of a twisted movement as part of the counter culture in the 1980's around the worldwide phenomenon of TOPPS and GARBAGE PAIL KIDS.  Creating a very genuine, funny and behind the scenes account with truly eclectic characters, vast history, candid interviews and stories from insight and perspectives over the thirty years from different artistic walks of life.  The documentary 30 YEARS OF GARBAGE not only gives us a full portrait about the impact of these collectible then, but the impact now about the results of a legal battle.  The dark side of the business.  Personal and cultural significance as well as the impact of the secondary markets.  Available only on DVD right now, 30 YEARS OF GARBAGE is a must for fans of the 1980's and like the other two documentaries, an educational piece to the part of history that spoke for a generation of fans and creative. 

Some of the interviewed participants include: Creators/Artists Tom Bunk, Jay Lynch, James Warhola, John Pound, Art Spiegelman, Len Brown, journalist Rebekah McKendry, Actors Mackenzie Austin and Kevin Thompson. 

More information at http://www.30yearsofgarbage.com

SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL: THE TRUE STORY OF THE PROCESS CHURCH OF THE FINAL JUDGMENT - Directed by Neil Edwards

I experienced this film at the BOSTON UNDERGROUND FILM FESTIVAL and in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania at the PhilaMOCA.  Associated with some of the most infamous moments of the 1960's, the name of THE PROCESS CHURCH OF THE FINAL JUDGMENT means different things to different people.  For some it's a philosophy to follow.  For others, it is a name that stirs great fear.  For some it is true evil.  For some it is a satanic cult influencing those to its cause.  Still for others, it is the focus of a movement that defined a counter-culture born in 1960's England that created a flirtation with celebrities, the wealthy and royalty.  Going deep inside the inner circle and behind the veil of one of the truly misunderstood and truly feared organization, filmmaker Neil Edwards spoke with many of the key heads and members of THE PROCESS CHURCH OF THE FINAL JUDGMENT for this documentary telling stories and recollecting on what THE PROCESS CHURCH OF THE FINAL JUDGMENT has meant over their life.  THE PROCESS CHURCH OF THE FINAL JUDGMENT narrative is built on a foundation of history, impactful photography, truly honest opinions and recollections of the groups that traveled around the world and impacted those left in their wake.  Put against the insight of those associated with the organization as well as the music from the legendary band "Funkadelic" and the electric sounds by Nicholas Bullen, SYMPATHY FOR THE DEVIL: THE TRUE STORY OF THE PROCESS CHURCH OF THE FINAL JUDGMENT breaks down the myth and the ideals cultivated by the public at large and set straight by this group through their different incarnations, members and changing philosophies.

Some of the interview participants include: Member Timothy Wyllie, Hope White and Malachi McCormick, Cult Filmmaker John Waters, FUNKADELIC Musicians George Clinton, Artist Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, and renowned Authors Gary Lachman, Robert Irwin, Gaia Servadio and biographer Simon Wells.

More information at http://www.theprocessmovie.com.

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