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Icarus Film
Films from independent
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Subject Index
Films & DVDs on U.S. History  Text Size Increase Font Size Decrease Font Size
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    A

  • Afghanistan 1979: The War That Changed the World

    Afghanistan 1979: The War That Changed the World - A behind-the-scenes history of the Soviet Union's 10-year long war in Afghanistan.

  • Americas in Transition - A concise and fast-paced history of the volatile forces at work in Chile, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Nicaragua in the 1980s

  • C

  • Clara Lemlich - The story of the young, Jewish, Ukrainian-born woman who in 1909 sparked the 'Uprising of the 20,000' -- the first massive strike of New York City garment workers.

  • Conversations with Roy DeCarava - The life of the first black photographer to win a Guggenheim Fellowship.

  • Cul de Sac

    Cul de Sac - An allegory for a working class suburb in decline, this film investigates the story of Shawn Nelson, who stole a tank and went on a rampage through the residential streets of Clairemont, CA.

  • D

  • Deadly Enemies - From early attempts to use bacteria as weapons, to the advent of gene splicing and the creation of superbugs, this is the chilling story of the development of biological weapons.

  • Dealing with the Demon - Three-episode series that interweaves contemporary human stories with crucial scenes from the history of the drug trade, providing a provocative and timely commentary from which to view the ongoing debate.

  • Dear Dr. Spencer - From the early 1920s until his death in 1969, Dr. Robert Douglas Spencer practiced medicine in a small town in Pennsylvania, where he treated colds, set fractures - and performed illegal abortions.

  • Death Squadrons

    Death Squadrons - The previously untold story of how the French military trained Latin American death squads in the 60s and 70s (and even U.S. Special Forces in the early days of our Vietnam War).

  • Devils Don't Dream! - Analysis of the CIA-sponsored 1954 coup in Guatemala.

  • Ducktators - A unique look at the use of cartoons during World War II.

  • E

  • An Empire of Reason - What it would have been like if television had covered the ratification process of the US Constitution in 1781.

  • Epoca

    Epoca - How is history created? What does or does not enter our memory? By staging a variety of historical fragments, this meditative documentary challenges the idea of "authentic" history.

  • F

  • Far from Vietnam - The landmark collaboration between Jean-Luc Godard, Joris Ivens, William Klein, Claude Lelouch, Chris Marker and Alain Resnais in protest of the Vietnam war.

  • The Film of Her - A Library of Congress clerk tries to save early cinematic treasures in Bill Morrison's doc-fiction hybrid. Music by Henryk Gorecki & Bill Frisell.

  • Finally Got the News - A film about the League of Revolutionary Black Workers, which was, "in many respects the most significant expression of black radical thought and activism in the 1960s." - Manning Marable, Prof. of History, Columbia Univ.

  • First Kill

    First Kill - Compellingly brings out the contradictory feelings that war evokes - fear and anger, but also seduction, fascination and excitement. With Michael Herr (Apocalypse Now, Dispatches).

  • Fundi - Friend and advisor to Martin Luther King, FUNDI reveals the instrumental role that Ella Baker played in shaping the American civil rights movement.

    G

  • Ghosts of Attica - The definitive account of America's most violent prison rebellion, its deadly suppression, the days of torture that ensued, and the almost 30 year legal case that followed.

  • The Great Flood - Artist Bill Morrison and musician Bill Frisell evoke the Mississippi River Flood of 1927 and ensuing transformation of American society.

  • A Grin Without A Cat

    A Grin Without A Cat - Chris Marker's epic film-essay on the worldwide political wars of the 60's and 70's: Vietnam, Che, May '68, Prague, Chile, and the fate of the New Left.

  • I

  • I Am Somebody - 1969 hospital workers struggle in Charleston, South Carolina.

  • In Motion: Amiri Baraka - Biographical profile of the out-spoken African-American writer.

  • An Injury To One - Reconstructs the long-forgotten murder of union organizer Frank Little in Butte, Montana, and draws a connection between the unsolved murder of Little, and the attempted murder of the town itself.

  • The Internationale - Draws on people's stories of an emotionally charged radical song (the long-time anthem of socialism and communism) to celebrate the relationship between music and social change.

  • The Intolerable Burden - One black family's commitment to a quality education, from the pre-1965 time of segregation, through desegregation, and through the recent period of resegregation. **Winner, John E. O'Connor Film Award, American Historical Association**

  • J

  • Japan's Peace Constitution - Explores the origins of Japan's Constitution in the ashes of war, and the significance of its famous peace clause, Article 9, and the debates surrounding it, in the 21st century.

  • Jesus Politics - A personal investigation into the role of religion in American politics, and specifically this year's presidential election.

  • Joe Polowsky: An American Dreamer

    Joe Polowsky: An American Dreamer - The story of an American World War II veteran who met the Russians at the Elbe River, and who dedicated his life to promoting peace.

  • Justice and the Generals - Investigates the human rights and legal issues involved when two Salvadoran generals are sued in an American court for atrocities (such as the murder of four American churchwomen) committed during El Salvador's civil war.

  • L

  • The Last Happy Day - A portrait of a doctor who saw the worst of society and ran.

  • The Loving Story - Oscar-shortlist selection, this is the definitive account of Loving v. Virginia, the landmark 1967 Supreme Court decision that legalized interracial marriage.

  • M

  • Milk in the Land

    Milk in the Land - How did milk become so popular, and iconic? An entertaining and innovative history and deconstruction of milk and American culture!

  • N

  • Notes on Marie Menken - The story of the "mother of avante-garde film"—the influential experimental filmmaker who inspired artists such as Stan Brakhage, Andy Warhol, and Kenneth Anger.

    O

  • Outerborough - A trolley traveling over the Brooklyn Bridge in 1899 helped create the footage underlying Bill Morrison's neo-travelogue. Music by Todd Reynolds.

  • P

  • Persons of Interest - The government calls them terrorists - they call themselves Americans. A unique and compelling film that gives voice to the human costs of the government's anti-terrorism campaign.

  • The Photographer, His Wife, Her Lover

    The Photographer, His Wife, Her Lover - A complex tale of art world profit, deception and crime, framed by O. Winston Link's stunning iconic photographs of the last of the American steam locomotives.

  • The Prize of the Pole - Robert Peary's quest to plant an American flag at the North Pole came with enormous, and sometimes unacknowledged, costs. Now his great-grandson wants to set the record straight.

  • Public Enemy - Four former leaders of the Black Panther Party reflect on the impact of their radical 60s civil rights movement, and the promise and limitations of attempting revolutionary change.

  • R

  • Release - Al Capone's release from prison is eagerly awaited by a crowd in Bill Morrison's split-screen panorama. Music by Vijay Iyer.

  • S

  • Sermons and Sacred Pictures

    Sermons and Sacred Pictures - Profiles Reverend L.O. Taylor, a Baptist minister and inspired photographer / filmmaker who documented the fabric of black American life prior to the civil rights movement.

  • Seven Songs for Malcolm X - An homage to the inspirational African-American civil rights leader.

  • The Sixth Side of the Pentagon - Chronicle of the 1967 Mobilization to End the War in Vietnam protest march on the Pentagon, by documentary essayist Chris Marker. Also on this disc is a second film, THE EMBASSY.

  • The Substance - Chock-full of rare footage and LSD-celebrity interviews, an informative and entertaining historical and scientific "trip."

  • T

  • Tighten Your Belts, Bite the Bullet

    Tighten Your Belts, Bite the Bullet - The 1970s fiscal crises in New York and Cleveland.

  • Time of the Locust - Critically examines American involvement in Vietnam through a compilation of American, Japanese and Vietnamese combat footage.

  • To Tell the Truth: The Strategy of Truth - Directly follows the previous episode and examines documentary filmmaking in times of war and how it was used as propaganda.

  • To Tell the Truth: Working for Change - A detailed history of documentary filmmaking in the US and the UK from 1929 to 1941 focused on the social movements of the times, The Great Depression, The New Deal, and the awakening of the Leftwing in the UK.

  • W

  • Wandering Souls

    Wandering Souls - Thirty years after the end of the war against the United States, two Vietnamese veterans continue to search for the remains of their dead comrades.

  • We All Fall Down - The rise and fall of America's mortgage system and the damage in the wake of its collapse. With Nouriel Roubini, Richard Sylla and Chris Mayer.

  • With God On Our Side - A comprehensive six-hour series treating one of the most important political and cultural stories in contemporary America: the rising power of the Religious Right from 1950 through the 1990s.

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