Documentaries about film itself have existed for decades, but only with the advent of short-form internet video — preceded by the advents of powerful desktop editing software and high-quality home-video formats — did the form of the cinema video essay that we know today emerge. Over the past few years, the Youtube channel Every Frame a Painting has become one of the modern cinema video essay’s most respected purveyors, examining everything from how editors think to the bland music of superhero films to why Vancouver never plays itself to the signature technique of auteurs like Martin Scorsese, Jackie Chan, and, yes, Michael Bay.
On a chilly Saturday evening in a suburb just outside Washington, D.C., a crowd of kids were furiously pedaling away on a dozen bikes bolted to the base of a 35-foot Christmas tree display. We were just minutes from Silver Spring’s annual tree-lighting ceremony at the downtown plaza, and some were seriously giving themselves a full workout.
Long before vinyl records, cassette tapes, CDs and MP3s came along, people first experienced audio recordings through another medium — through cylinders made of tin foil, wax and plastic. In recent years, we’ve featured cylinder recordings from the 19th century that allow you to hear the voices of Leo Tolstoy, Tchaikovsky, Walt Whitman, Otto von Bismarck and other towering figures.
A hundred years ago, at the height of World War I, the British government faced a dilemma. As the slaughter on the Somme reached its climax, a vast munitions factory had been built on the border between England and Scotland, on an area covering more than fourteen square miles.
BARCELONA (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – When Alioune Thiam arrived in Barcelona, he joined hundreds of other undocumented African migrants peddling their wares illegally on the streets. Now he’s part of a scheme to give some of the Spanish city’s most vulnerable people an alternative.
Savita Devi is leading a group of 10 Dalit (formerly known as untouchable) women who have broken stereotypes by coming together to form a drum band.
Performances by drum bands have been part of an old tradition at various ceremonies, but it’s a profession almost completely dominated by men.
On the large terrace of a traditional, stilted wooden Cambodian house just four kilometres from downtown Siem Reap, a dozen or so countryside workers sit cross-legged atop rattan floor mats, brows furrowed deep in concentration. Methodically – almost meditatively – they craft a mysterious product. Through an intricate process, they transform the fibre from green and woody stems into ‘white gold’ – shimmering threads of lotus fibre that is fast becoming a coveted luxury fabric.