Documentary Films

Non-fiction films

Rock star son’s quest to learn more about quantum physicist dad

Parallel Worlds, Parallel Lives, a recent PBS/Nova episode rocked my world recently. (my S.O. tivos Nova, and kept this episode for me). Mark Everett (the E of the band Eels) goes on a quest to understand more about Hugh Everett (his dad) and dad’s radical theory of quantum physics.

The musician son who didn’t inherit dad’s math gene seeks to learn about the remarkable theory his dad dreamed up.

[from the show’s about page:] “My father never, ever said anything to me about his theories,” Mark says. “I was in the same house with him for at least 18 years, but he was a total stranger to me. He was in his own parallel universe. He was a physical presence, like the furniture, sitting there jotting down crazy notations at the dining room table night after night. I think he was deeply disappointed that he knew he was a genius but the rest of the world didn’t know it.”

Mark Everett jokingly admits that he can barely tabulate a restaurant tip, let alone understand ...Read More

Posted by Susan A. Kitchens on November 10, 2008 in • Documentary FilmsPersonal History
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A slave-trading story from the deep north

Friday’s episode of The Story, a public radio show about, well, stories and storytelling, is devoted to Katrina Browne’s family story. She discovered that her family –The DeWolfes from Bristol, Rhode Island– had been the largest slave trading family in the history of the U.S.

40 minutes of the hour-long show is a conversation with Katrina and Dick Gordon (The Story‘s host) about what Katrina did in response: visit the locations where the slave trade took place—Rhode Island, Ghana, Cuba. She invited members of the extended family to go, and 9 accepted. It’s a spell-binding listen.

Browne (along with Alla Kovgan and Jude Ray) made a documentary film from the trip—Traces of the Trade, which was just premiered at Sundance and will be shown on PBS’s P.O.V. this summer. (The timing of the film release is significant; it coincides with the 200th anniversary of the abolition of slave tradiding.) A relative, Thomas DeWolf, went on that trip and wrote his ...Read More

Posted by Susan A. Kitchens on February 12, 2008 in • BooksDocumentary Films
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