See also: FILMS ON THE HOLOCAUST WW2
FILMS ON GENOCIDE WORLD WAR TWO:
The World at War — Disc 10
Documentary 1974 NR 11 discs. Disc 10 includes the following segments: “The Final Solution: Part 1” and “The Final Solution: Part 2.” Many regard this 26-hour British TV documentary from 1973 as television’s greatest and most comprehensive account of World War II — a stirring history that features interviews with Allied and Axis leaders, civilians, officers, politicians and more. Narrated by the great Laurence Olivier, this 30th-anniversary collection also features eight hours of bonus documentaries, including Disc 10 with the following segments: “The Final Solution: Part 1” and “The Final Solution: Part 2.”
Inside the Nazi State
Documentary 2005 TV-PG Season 1 DVD. This six-part documentary series tackles one of World War II’s — and history’s — most disquieting and repugnant subjects: the Holocaust and its infamous killing factory, the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp.
Documentary 1985 NR 4 discs. Director Claude Lanzmann’s devastating Holocaust documentary sheds light on one of the darkest periods in the history of humankind. With more than nine hours of footage, the film relies solely on testimony from survivors, witnesses and perpetrators. Eschewing archival footage, Lanzmann interviews each subject — many at length — beginning with Simon Srebnik, one of only two Jews who survived the Chelmno death camp.
Night and Fog
(Nuit et Brouillard)
Documentary 1955 NR 31 minutes. Employing haunting images, such as a hill of human hair or a pyramid of shoes, director Alain Resnais contrasts 1955 footage of Auschwitz’s quiet, empty buildings with black-and-white footage shot there in 1944. This landmark documentary — one of the first cinematic reflections on the unspeakable horrors of the Holocaust — is as lyrical as it is graphic, and has influenced contemporary movies such as Schindler’s List.
FILMS ON GENOCIDE OF NATIVE AMERICANS
Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee
Docudrama 2007 NR 132 minutes. A dark chapter of U.S. history comes to light in this epic saga of the U.S. government’s deliberate extermination of the American Indians. Beginning after the Sioux victory at Little Big Horn, the film traces the stories of three men: a Sioux doctor (Adam Beach), a lobbying senator (Aidan Quinn) and the Lakota hero Sitting Bull (August Schellenberg). (Earned an Emmy Award for Best Made-for-Television Movie). See Full Review
Ishi, The Last Yahi
Documentary 1992 NR 56 minutes. Ishi, the sole survivor of California’s Yahi Native American tribe before his death in 1916, is the subject of this documentary featuring interviews and historical footage that tell Ishi’s story of survival in the face of non-native encroachment. Narrated by Oscar Award-winning actress Linda Hunt, the enlightening presentation chronicles not only Ishi’s story, but also the fledgling science of anthropology as it existed in the early 20th century. See Full Review
The story of Ishi, The Last Yahi documentary is also told in the docudrama The Last of His Tribe.
The Last of His Tribe
Docudrama 1992 PG-13 91 minutes. Decades after his entire tribe was slaughtered, the sole survivor of the attack, Ishi, (Graham Greene) comes out of hiding having lived for years in isolation. Anthropologist Alfred Kroeber (Jon Voight) learns of Ishi’s story and makes it his subject of study. Impressed with the man’s courage and eager to learn the tribe’s history, Kroeber takes Ishi in and devotes his research to finding out the truth. I came across this gem looking for movies on Native Americans. I am not ashamed to admit that I had no idea who Ishi was. Not only did this movie enlighten me to this interesting historical fact, it was well acted and very well directed. Graham Greene, who I am convinced can play any Native American on the planet, is heartbreakingly splendid in his role as Ishi. This story spans the four years these men spent together and manages to touch on the important points.
The story of The Last of His Tribe docudrama is also told in the documentary Ishi, The Last Yahi.
I Will Fight No More Forever
Docudrama 1975 PG 106 minutes. Chief Joseph (Ned Romero) takes a stand against the U.S. government in this drama about the famous Nez Perce leader. Tensions mount when Gen. Howard (James Whitmore) orders the Indian chief to relocate his people to inadequate reservation lands. The defiant leader makes a dangerous attempt to lead his tribe 1,500 miles to Canada. Sam Elliott and John Kauffman also star in this made-for-television drama, which first aired in 1975. The movie is okay as far as 1970s television movies were concerned, but this is such an important moment in American history and it really deserves better treatment from a film maker.
We Shall Remain
Docudrama 2009 NR 3 discs / 5 episodes. With depth, breadth and richness, Native American history is told through indigenous eyes in this revolutionary docudrama. Exploring five pivotal periods, the series spans 300 years of Indian adversity, resilience and self-determination.
Documentary 1995 NR 4 discs. Kevin Costner hosts this documentary that explores various American Indian nations and their fall to European conquerors. The program chronicles North and Central American tribal history from the pre-Columbian era to the end of the 19th century.
FILMS ON GENOCIDE IN VIETNAM
Sir! No Sir!
Documentary 2005 NR 84 minutes. Filmmaker and activist David Zeiger’s documentary chronicles the largely forgotten antiwar activities of American GIs and other members of the military during the Vietnam era — actions that put them in greater peril than civilian protesters. Powerful and surprising, the film weaves together the stories of veterans who participated in the opposition movement, an effort that, by the early 1970s, found widespread support from civilians and troops alike.
Documentary 1972 NR 96 minutes. Banned by network television when released, this daring 1972 documentary examines reports of atrocities committed by U.S. soldiers during the Vietnam War. Using the 1971 Detroit Winter Soldier Investigation as its basis, the film features interviews with Vietnam veterans who saw or participated in the crimes paired with footage of the war. The film serves as a permanent reminder of the tragic effects of war and the human capacity for cruelty. See Full Review
Remember My Lai
Documentary Frontline 1989. In 1968, American soldiers massacred over 500 adults and children in a Vietnamese hamlet called My Lai. Frontline explores the legacy of that savage day on the men who were there and the Vietnamese who survived.
Battle’s Poison Cloud
Documentary 2004 NR 56 minutes. In this critically acclaimed exposé, filmmaker Cecile Trijssenaar documents the record numbers of birth defects and other health problems related to the lingering toxins of Agent Orange that had been sprayed over the landscape of Vietnam by U.S. troops. Even after the war ended, a cloud of tragedy remained due to the 17 million gallons of the chemical weapon that was dumped. The film calls for an admission of culpability and a much-needed cleanup.
FILMS ON GENOCIDE IN AFRICA
Docudrama 2004 PG-13 122 minutes. Amid the holocaust of internecine tribal fighting in Rwanda that sees the savage butchering of hundreds of thousands of men, women and children, one ordinary hotel manager musters the courage to save more than 1,000 helpless refugees.
The Devil Came on Horseback
Documentary 2007 NR 1hr 25m. In this unflinching documentary chronicling the genocide in Darfur, a former Marine captain is forever transformed by the atrocities he witnesses.
Attack on Darfur
Thriller 2009 R 1hr 38m. Three journalists reporting on Darfur wrestle with their obligation to the story and to the lives of the people with whom they are in daily contact.
FILMS ON FEMALE GENDERCIDE IN CHINA AND INDIA
It’s A Girl
Documentary 2012 NR 1hr3m. This grave documentary spotlights the cultural traditions that surround widespread female “gendercide”, female infanticide, and violence toward women in India and China. It tells the stories of abandoned and trafficked girls, of women who suffer extreme dowry-related violence, of brave mothers fighting to save their daughters’ lives, and of other mothers who would kill for a son. Global experts and grassroots activists put the stories in context and advocate different paths towards change, while collectively lamenting the lack of any truly effective action against this injustice.
Must-See Movies—For What You Need to Know
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