Annal: 2005 Academy Award® for Best Documentary Feature

Results of the Academy Award® in the year 2005.

Film:Born into Brothels

Born into Brothels

Zana Briski, Ross Kauffman

Born Into Brothels is an inspiring look at the transformative journey of a group of extraordinary children in Calcutta’s red light district. Voted Best Documentary by the National Board of Review and the Los Angeles Film Critics Association. Born Into Brothels, which was produced and directed by New York based filmmakers Zana Briski and Ross Kauffman, also garnered over 20 major film festival awards including the Audience Award at the Sundance Film Festival and the Best Documentary Award at the Seattle International Film Festival.

A tribute to the resiliency of childhood and the restorative power of art, Born Into Brothels is a portrait of several unforgettable children who live in the red light district of Calcutta where their mothers work as prostitutes. Zana Briski, a New York based photographer, gives each of these youngsters a camera and teaches them how to take pictures, simultaneously causing…[more]

Film:The Story of the Weeping Camel

The Story of the Weeping Camel

Luigi Falorni, Byambasuren Davaa

This breathtaking blend of documentary and fiction filmmaking provides an unobtrusive glimpse into the relationships, rituals, and livelihood of a four-generation family of nomadic shepherds in the Gobi desert of South Mongolia. It is birthing season for the family’s herd of camels and after several healthy foals are born, the last birth is difficult. With quiet perseverance, the family helps to deliver a rare white colt, which the mother camel quickly rejects and refuses to nurse. With growing concern for the colt’s survival, the family decides to employ a…

Film:Super Size Me: A Film of Epic Portions

Super Size Me: A Film of Epic Portions

Morgan Spurlock

Filmmaker Morgan Spurlock, rejected five times by the USC film school, won the best director award at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival for this alarmingly personal investigation into the health hazards wreaked by our fast food nation. Under extensive medical supervision, Spurlock subjects himself to a steady diet of McDonald’s cuisine for 30 days just to see what happens. In less than a week, his ordinarily fit body and equilibrium undergo dark and ugly changes: Spurlock grows fat, his cholesterol rockets north, his organs take a beating, and he becomes subject to…


Tupac: Resurrection

Lauren Lazin

Title aside, we’ll never see the likes of Tupac Shakur again. The late rap superstar was a complex, contradictory figure and, throughout the course of this riveting documentary, it’s as if he’s back in our world again. Produced by his mother, former Black Panther Afeni Shakur, Tupac Resurrection isn’t so much “biased” as it’s subjective. In the MTV film, accompanied by a book and soundtrack, director Lauren Lazin looks at Tupac’s short, full life from beginning to end and doesn’t avoid the dark times—the arrests, the shootings—but she does tend to…

Film:Twist of Faith

Twist of Faith

Kirby Dick

There’s no easy way to address a highly charged subject like the sexual abuse of young boys by Catholic priests, but with Twist of Faith, director Kirby Dick has taken a straightforward approach, using neither fanfare nor frills to create an unflinching but highly personal documentary about this disgraceful episode. The 2004 film’s focus is on one place, Toledo, Ohio, and primarily on two men. On the one hand, there’s fireman Tony Comes, mid-thirties, married with two kids. Some twenty years earlier, he’d been molested by his then-priest; callow,…

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