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Tip #1744: The Best Docs About Filmmaking

Larry Jordan – LarryJordan.com

Five key documentaries on filmmaking.

Alfred HIghcock (left) and François Truffaut (right)

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This article, written by Jourdan Aldredge, first appeared in PremiumBeat.com. This is a summary.

These insightful documentaries about filmmaking can offer more inspiration and advice than most film classes.

If you really want to learn about how films are actually made, you should watch films about filmmaking. There are tons of incredible documentaries that cover the art of filmmaking, ranging from director retrospectives, famous “the making of” documentaries, as well as comprehensive studies about filmmaking itself.

Here’s a list of some the author’s favorites:

  • Lost in La Mancha. We’ll start with one of the best documentaries about the sheer insanity of filmmaking. Lost in La Mancha is a 2002 documentary that tells the story of Terry Gilliam‘s (first) attempt to make a film adaption of the famous Miguel de Cervantes novel Don Quixote de la Mancha. SPOILER: He ultimately fails at his endeavor.
  • Hitchcock/Truffaut. Premiered in 2015 at the Cannes Film Festival, Hitchcock/Truffaut is any cinephile’s documentary dream, providing an in-depth exploration into the work of two of the most famous, iconic filmmakers of all time.
  • Electric Boogaloo: The Wild, Untold Story of Cannon Films. For those who have ever wondered how Cannon Film favorites ever came to existence in the first place, this will give you the best primer on how one audacious company financed, produced, and distributed such a wide array of eclectic films, ranging from action to horror to sci-fi.
  • Room 237. The film is presented through voiceovers as various film theorists provide their interpretations into why Stanley Kubrick made The Shining and what he was trying to say with his many profound, yet confusing, filmmaking decisions.
  • My Life Directed by Nicolas Winding Refn. The acclaimed director granted unprecedented access into the filming of his 2013 action/crime drama Only God Forgives to one of the most intimate documentary filmmakers ever—his wife.

The article – linked above – provides more details, plus links to all these videos.


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