Documentaries to see before you go into cryo-statis

All but one are on Netflix streaming, for easy access.  These are the cream of the crop in my eyes.

The Pixar Story
It was awesome all the way through.  I grudgingly have more respect for Steve Jobs and (can’t believe I’m saying this) George Lucas for having the vision to give computer animation a chance, when Disney said “This is a waste of time”.

Freakanomics
Fascinating film made from the best-selling book of the same name.  It studies things from a large-number perspective.  They look at huge sets of data and find patterns, and do things like proving cheating in sumo wrestling.  Sumo wrestlers have been murdered over suggesting things like that, but the numbers don’t lie.  Surprisingly interesting documentary.

The Parking Lot Movie
This one was awesome.  Had no idea what it was about until I watched it.  It’s a parking lot business, and it follows the attendants over three years.  It is surprisingly insightful about life and philosophy.  The attendant job is highly sought after, and is near a university, so some highly intelligent people end up working at this shitty little lot.  Really fun film if you stick with it.

Believe: The Eddie Izzard Story
The story of Eddie Izzard, possibly my favorite stand-up comedian ever.  His routines are intelligent and decidedly awesome.  This is the story about where he came from, how hard he worked to get where he is today.  He’s a rock star of comedy, but he had to claw his way to the top.

Exit Through the Gift Shop
An idiot documentarian starts filming his life, and never stops.  He drifts aimlessly until he stumbles upon the world of street art.  He then stumbles right into being the first person to extensively film Banksy, the most famous, and notorious, street artist in the world.  Google Banksy if you don’t know the name, his social commentary type artwork is incredible.  Anyway, Banksy had to take over the film itself, because the self proclaimed “director” was definitely NOT a director.  Out came this film, it’s bizarre and extremely good.

The Fog of War
Not on streaming, I rented this way back in the day at Blockbusters =)  Oscar winning documentary is basically an interview with former Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara.  He talks about how close we came to disaster in his career.  In this film he is brilliant and articulate, even at his advanced age.

Restrepo
Named after a soldier who lost his life, the filmmakers spend a year with the Second Platoon in what was considered the most dangerous valley in Afghanistan.  It mostly captures the trials every day people go through in war, of the tolls of being a soldier.  One of TimHetherington’s documentaries.  His recent death has been covered in the news, as he was killed while covering the conflict in Libya.  Made me sad to hear it.  Though good, this is probably the weakest documentary in the “worthy as evening’s entertainment” category.

That’s it for now!  Next up is probably low budget or indie films that are amazing.

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