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Documentaries Archive

June 23, 2010

Real Housewives of New Jersey Recap: Revenge of the Squareboob Edition

Danielle-real-housewives-new-jersey Welcome to the first week of Real Housewives of New Jersey Minus One! Dina - aka Captain Zentastic - has left the show to focus on her family, her charity, and her horrifying cadre of hairless cats. Whatever shall we do? Wherever shall we go? There's only one way to find out, people: much like pulling off a band-aid or taking our first dip of the year into the chilly Atlantic, you've just gotta close your eyes... and go all-in.


The Real World's Return to New Orleans Reminder That The Real World Used To Be Good

Real World Logo MTV's The Real World's next season, it's 24th (!), will premiere June 30th and returns to New Orleans, the locale for it's 9th season. The latest Big Easy incantation follows a low-rated Washington season that tanked despite trying to piggyback on the political enthusiasm of young people following the 2008 presidential election. "What our audience wants is. . . . stories that relate to them. They don't want esoteric discussions," franchise creator and executive producer Jon Murray told the Washington Post on Monday. Apparently they're going back to boozing and humping. 


May 20, 2010

Babies On Film

Babies-movie-poster-thomas-balmes Babies are awesome. And a movie called Babies that opened earlier this month sets out to show us why, worldwide. 


May 05, 2010

Real Housewives of New Jersey Season 2 Premieres; Life Awesome Once Again

Real-Housewives-New-Jersey Quick: name the top five events in human history. Whaddya got? Alexander the Great discovering the New World? The evolutionary leap of opposable thumbs? The Boston Red Sox winning the 2004 World Series? Bruce Willis blowing up the killer meteor from beyond in Armafuckinggeddon? All worthy choices, but push 'em down — because as of right now, all five spots are officially taken by the relaunch of Real Housewives of New Jersey.


March 08, 2010

Meet the Woman Who Kanye'd the Oscars

Elinor-burkett-oscars There was precisely one moment of genuine drama during last night's Oscars -- and I know, because I watched the whole thing, down to the bitter overlong end, going down with the ship much like Avatar's hope of avoiding the James Cameron backlash -- and that was during the acceptance speech for (of all things) Best Documentary Short Film winner Music by Prudence. It was weird! And awkward! And awesome!


February 09, 2010

Selections for Your Snowbound Existence

Cabin_fever Many of your faithful MamaPop writers, myself included, are dealing with life under the current bizarro circumstances that come with one of the worst snowstorms ever.


January 28, 2010

Apocalypse Man Would Eat Will Smith With Some Fava Beans And A Nice Chianti

Woman1Those who know me enjoy poking fun at my endless fascination with how we're all going to die horribly. Will it be a giant asteroid, a flash ice age, a zombie-plague, a simultaneous failure of all technology, or my personal favorite, a self-awareness fueled robocalypse?

Frankly, the anticipation is killing me.  And while my friends and others have a little fun at my expense, I am now validated by The History Channel's documentary show Apocalypse Man.  Ha.


January 26, 2010

Teen Mom Finale Tonight! And 16 and Pregnant Season 2 Beginning Soon!

Teen_mom_dr_drew Teen Mom, MTV's spin-off of their groundbreaking documentary series 16 and Pregnant, airs its finale tonight, giving us a glimpse of Maci, Catelynn, Amber, and Farrah as they venture further into parenthood and adulthood.


January 14, 2010

'Herb & Dorothy' Gives Me a Glimpse of a Glorious Future

Herb-and-dorothy-vogel-megumi-sasaki When I think of an ideal future for my husband and I it is this: That we'll remain in love, be interested as well as interesting, still hold hands when we take a walk and continue to create and appreciate art. In other words, I'd like to be Herb and Dorothy Vogel, a postal worker and a librarian living in a tiny, one-bedroom apartment in Manhattan who have managed to amass one of the most important contemporary art collections in history. The documentary of their life, Megumi Sasaki's Herb & Dorothy, was just released on DVD and it will be only the second DVD I've purchased for myself in five years.

Warning: Incredibly un-cynical, heart warming, inspiring love story up ahead.


December 07, 2009

Amber's Story: An Interview with One of MTV's "Teen Mom" Teens

Teen_mom Last Thursday, I gave you a little peek into MTV's new series, Teen Mom, which premieres tomorrow, December 8th, at 10 p.m. The show follows the lives of four of the young parents featured on 16 and Pregnant. I recently had the opportunity to speak with Amber, whose struggles and triumphs as the young mother of her daughter, Leah, and fiance to Gary are chronicled on Teen Mom.


December 03, 2009

Preview of MTV's New Series, Teen Mom

Mtv_teen_mom A few months ago, I wrote about MTV's series 16 and Pregnant and also had the opportunity to speak with Catelynn, one of the young women featured on the show.

As any parent can tell you, pregnancy is just one tiny aspect of parenthood. And as many parents will attest, the reality of raising a human being can be a bit of a shock, even for the most prepared of us.


October 13, 2009

Awesome Documentaries about Very Specific Things

HelveticaBecause I am a frazzled working mom, I'm often way behind on seeing movies with smaller releases. This obviously applies to documentaries since I'm not in a huge release market and these things tend to fly through theaters anyway.

Thankfully, Netflix (and other such services) exist, so I'm able to catch up on some of the awesome stuff that I miss. Most recently, I rented and adored two documentaries that are about subjects so very micro that they're almost ridiculous: Helvetica (the font) and Donkey Kong.


October 07, 2009

The National Parks. Not America's Best Idea, but, Definitely Not the Worst

KenBurns NationalParks
September came and went without too much Pomp and Circumstance.  There were Things, I reckon.  There was the whole Kanye debacle.  We're still milking that bad-boy for all it's worth.  We're deep in the throws of the NFL and collegiate football.  *yawn*.  What?  Don't judge me.  Just because I like my Football to be of the European variety.  After all, it takes different strokes to move the world.

You know what curled my toes about September?  PBS.

I know, I know.  Does anyone under the age of 60 even watch PBS?  Not usually. 


September 22, 2009

Brick City Might Just Punch You in the Gut


The Sundance Channel has something really special, powerful, and moving that you need to check out if you can. It's called Brick City.

Brick City is the nickname for Newark, New Jersey. Like many American cities, Newark has experienced decades of decline, but is ready for rebirth. This rebirth comes from the people who live and die in Newark and Brick City follows their struggles and triumphs over five hour-long episodes, filmed during the summer of 2008.


August 19, 2009

Hard Knocks: Or, Why I Now Care About Cincinnati For The First Time Since WKRP Was Cancelled

Chad_Ocho_Cinco_Hard_Knocks There's a reason HBO is an essential part of modern life: because they consistently produce some of the most compelling television on television. If you've read this site before - like, uh... ever - you're well aware that Team MamaPop brings some big love to the good people at HBO with great regularity, notwithstanding the current inexplicable infatuation with rovampic melodrama.

Their expertise extends beyond fiction, however — as the just-started new season of Hard Knocks makes abundantly clear. As has been the case in previous seasons, this five-week documentary follows the strange and immensely fascinating world of preseason NFL training camps in a unique marriage of documentary, reality TV and sports drama that transcends the appeal of professional football to create a truly compelling on-screen experience.


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