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New DVDs have hit the shelves at the public libraries - here are some choice picks from our nonfiction movies.
"Blues: a musical journey," is a seven-part series that traces the origins of the Blues as a musical tradition. Each disc contains a movie by a different director (Martin Scorsese, Charles Burnett, and Clint Eastwood are a few) allowing us a glimpse of the director's take on the music, a bit of history, classic musicians, and newer artists. If you pick this up to hear the music, be sure to take a look at the special features on each disc - that's where the full-length performances are.
"Letters to the Wall," is a powerful and moving look at what the Vietnam War Memorial means to real people - the children, spouses, parents, brothers, sisters and friends of those lost in the war. This documentary focuses on the human reality, not the politics behind the war.
"Pulp Cinema," is designed to whet your appetite for film noir classics. Each of these more than four dozen film trailers entices without giving the plot away (the way trailers should be!) - spend some time and put together a "need to see" list of movies such as "Anatomy of a Murder," "Strange Triangle," and "Double Indemnity" (many of which can also be found at the library), featuring greats like Humphrey Bogart, Vincent Price, Lauren Bacall, and Jack Palance.
"America Dances!" covers nearly 50 years of social dance on film in 75 minutes - everything from the Lindy Hop to the Airplane Waltz. These are original film clips from newsreels and movies of professional dancers that have been sadly neglected until now. Check out the Charleston, the Jitterbug, and the Cakewalk, then take a look at some very tired couples in some amazing dance marathons!
"The Forgetting: a portrait of Alzheimer's," offers insight and information to the 95% of Americans who feel that Alzheimer's disease is a serious national problem. In presenting the disease in a social, historical, and scientific context, Shenk creates a collage of highly persuasive images that underscore the reasons for the race to a cure.
"Hawaiian Quilting with Nancy Lee Chong" is the video for those learning to quilt Hawaiian-style. Whether you are right-handed, left-handed, a beginner, or have some experience under your belt, Chong's clear verbal instruction accompanied by video close-up demonstrations, combined with her low-stress style make learning to make a Hawaiian quilt straightforward. The video's 2 hours include information on selecting your fabric and pattern to learning the stitches used to create the finished product. A great rainy day project-starter!
"Accessible Yoga for Every Body" Heard about the benefits of yoga and want to give it a try but are afraid of popping things out that are better left in? Susan Winter Ward is an advocate of the very gentle approach to yoga: this is a non-traditional and non-flashy introduction to the poses that are most beneficial to beginners and mature adults.
"Okie Noodling" The sport of catching fish using only your hands is legal in four states: Louisiana, Tennessee, Mississippi, and, of course, Oklahoma. Originally a Native American fishing technique, it has evolved into a sport with a unique and dedicated subculture. Okie Noodling catches the excitement and drama of using your hands as bait for 60-lb catfish. Also, see the first annual Okie Noodling Queen crowned! Strange and amusing viewing.