Annal: 2000 Academy Award® for Best Documentary Feature

Results of the Academy Award® in the year 2000.

Film:One Day in September

One Day in September

Kevin Macdonald

On September 5, 1972, eight Palestinian terrorists killed two Israeli athletes and took nine others hostage at the Munich Olympic Village. The event stopped the games, gripped the world, and perhaps for the first time fully illustrated the volatile state of affairs in the Mideast to the world. Kevin Macdonald’s 1999 Academy Award(r)-winning documentary painstakingly reconstructs the events, shedding light on what the world saw on television with the exasperating revelation of behind-the-scenes blunders.

This visceral, tense film uses riveting news footage to…

Film:Buena Vista Social Club

Buena Vista Social Club

Wim Wenders

In 1996, composer, producer, and guitar legend Ry Cooder entered Egrem Studios in Havana with the forgotten greats of Cuban music, many of them in their 60s and 70s, some of them long since retired. The resulting album, Buena Vista Social Club, became a Grammy-winning international bestseller. When Cooder returned to Havana in 1998 to record a solo album by 72-year-old vocalist Ibrahim Ferrer, filmmaker Wim Wenders was on hand to document the occasion. Wenders splits the film between portraits of the performers, who tell their stories directly to the…

Film:Genghis Blues

Genghis Blues

Roko Belic

The ancient art of Tuvan throat singing may not sound like the most scintillating subject for a movie, but for those wishing to immerse themselves in a different culture or meet remarkable people, this inspiring and exhilarating Oscar-nominated documentary will be pure pleasure. This is a story no Hollywood screenwriter could have imagined. Paul Pena is a blind San Francisco blues singer who has played with the likes of John Lee Hooker and Jerry Garcia (he also penned “Jet Airliner,” which Steve Miller covered). One night while listening to his shortwave radio,…

Film:On the Ropes

On the Ropes

Nanette Burstein, Brett Morgen

That every cliché and stereotype has some basis in fact is axiomatic. Boxing movies have long relied on archetypes such as the tough-but-big-hearted trainer who acts as a mentor, the crooked promoter, the hard-nosed kid who fights his way from the streets to the top. On the Ropes has all of these, but the kicker is this film isn’t fiction; this is a remarkable documentary that follows three young boxers, George, Noel, and Tyrene, in and out of the ring as they struggle with tough circumstances in their Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood while they train…

Film:Speaking in Strings

Speaking in Strings

Paola di Florio

Emotional, raw, and revealing—those adjectives apply to the documentary Speaking in Strings and the person profiled, Nadja Salerno-Sonnenberg, one of the world’s most acclaimed violinists. The intense musician’s professional journey, which began at Carnegie Hall when she was a teenager, was sidetracked when she accidentally cut off the tip of a finger and almost ended when she tried to commit suicide. Filmmaker Paola di Florio was a childhood friend, and this intimacy is reflected in frank oncamera interviews. (“Feeling more than anyone I know” can be…

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