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SUNDANCENOW DOC CLUB PRESENTS "ARMISEN, MEYERS & HADER FAVORITES"


 

Creators of IFC's Upcoming Original Comedy Series DOCUMENTARY NOW! Curated a Collection of 

13 Documentaries, Available Now At DocClub.com

  

 

New York, NY (August 10, 2015) - SundanceNow Doc Club, the advertising-free boutique SVOD service dedicated solely to documentaries, announced today that Fred Armisen, Seth Meyers and Bill Hader - the creators of DOCUMENTARY NOW!, IFC's upcoming original upcoming comedy series parodying some of the world's best-known documentaries - have guest curated a collection for Doc Club entitled "Armisen, Meyers and Hader Favorites." The collection is available to stream now, only at DocClub.com, and DOCUMENTARY NOW! will premiere on the IFC channel on Thursday, August 20.

 

On the importance of documentaries, Armisen stated: "Documentaries have been in existence since the very start of filmmaking. It's important for every human to have seen them all. Not just a few, all of them. And also back to back. One right after the other. In one sitting."
 

Meyers added: "Go to a party, a fancy party. Perhaps it's in a museum or an embassy. Walk up to the bar and order a snifter of brandy. Swish it around in the glass. Now walk up to a group of people and say, 'Have you seen the new Spider-man?' Look at their faces judging you. You've made an ass of yourself. But now try it again and ask, 'Have you seen the new Errol Morris?' Ahhhhhh, there's the reaction you were looking for! The subtle nods, the knowing smiles. You're fitting in! Documentaries: Earn your brandy."

 

And, Hader recounted: "In my spare time I like to have imaginary conversations with the legendary director Werner Herzog. Recently, Werner shared this amazing insight into the nature of documentary filmmaking:

 

All cinema, fictional films and so-called documentaries, speaks the language of resignation and thus emerges from the same fetid soil of our strenuous dreams. I fully embrace and reject this facile definition... And let me just say these Tuesday night laser tag dates have been the great joy of my life as of late. You are a cool friend, Bill.

 

Thanks, Werner."

 

The 13 films featured in the collection, alongside Armisen, Meyers and Hader's personal comments on each of their selections, are:

 

Fred Armisen's Picks:

 

EAMES: THE ARCHITECT AND THE PAINTER (2011)

James Franco narrates Jason Cohn and Bill Jersey's captivating look at the most influential design duo of the 20th century, Charles and Ray Eames. In addition to skillfully tracing the couples' innovations, the film highlights the often sad story of the fractured relationship between husband Charles and wife Ray, who had to put up with Charles' infidelities and being thought of as a supportive helper, rather than a vital contributor to the business.

 

"I knew so little about this couple before seeing this! I love anything that has to do with people who dedicate their lives to making great things (great art)."

 

 

JOE STRUMMER: THE FUTURE IN UNWRITTEN (2007)

As the front man of The Clash from 1977 onwards, Joe Strummer changed people's lives forever. Drawing on both a shared punk history and the close personal friendship which developed over the last years of Joe's life, Julien Temple's film is a celebration of Joe Strummer - before, during and after The Clash. Temple wastes no time tracing Joe Strummer's development from teen folkie to one of punk's most inspiring agitators.

 

"This film has Joe Strummer talking and singing in it. Anything that has Joe Strummer in it is automatically the best movie ever."

 

 

THE QUEEN OF VERSAILLES (2012)

With epic proportions of Shakespearean tragedy, Lauren Greenfield's film follows two unique characters, whose rags-to-riches success stories reveal the innate virtues and flaws of the American Dream. The film begins with the family triumphantly constructing the biggest house in America, a 90,000 sq. ft. palace. Over the next two years, their sprawling empire, fueled by the real estate bubble and cheap money, falters due to the economic crisis. Major changes in lifestyle and character ensue within the cross-cultural household of family members and domestic staff.

 

"I don't know how this director knew to shoot all of this before any actual drama went down. I can only assume there was some luck involved. A fascinating study on dreams, reality, and optimism. "

 

 

WHO IS HARRY NILSSON? (2006)

A must-see for rock fans and Beatles-buffs, John Scheinfeld's engrossing bio-doc chronicles the tumultuous life of John Lennon's favorite singer-songwriter, Harry Nilsson, who achieved fame with hit singles like "Everybody's Talkin" and "Without You." Scheinfeld peppers his fascinating film with terrific anecdotes from Nilsson's friends and fans, including Robin Williams, Brian Wilson, Yoko Ono, Eric Idle and many more.

 

"Harry Nilsson didn't do many (or I think any) live performances, so this is a good way to see some of his incredible-ness. There's an appearance he makes on a late night Playboy show in the late 60's, and he sings Good Old Desk. A beautiful version, in black and white video."

 

 

Seth Meyers' Picks:

 

BILL CUNNINGHAM NEW YORK (2011)

"We all get dressed for Bill," says Vogue editrix Anna Wintour. For decades, Schwinn-riding cultural anthropologist Bill Cunningham has been inventively chronicling fashion trends for the Times Style section. Wintour, Tom Wolfe, Brooke Astor appear in the film professing their love for Bill. Richard Press's BILL CUNNINGHAM NEW YORK is a delicate, funny and poignant portrait of a dedicated artist whose only wealth is his own humanity and unassuming grace.

 

"A great film about not just its subject but the city he lives in.  A testament to what it means to love what you do."

 

 

HARVARD BEATS YALE 29-29 (2008)

On November 23, 1968, Yale and Harvard's undefeated football teams met in Cambridge, with Yale heavily favored. Led by Brian Dowling and Calvin Hill, Yale goes up 22-0. With less than one minute to play, Yale leads 29-13. For Harvard, the end is exhilarating; for Yale, supreme confidence gives way to a life lesson. Interviewees add context to Kevin Rafferty's film with comments about the Vietnam War, the sexual revolution, and players' friendships with George W. Bush (Yale), Al Gore (Harvard), and Meryl Streep (Vassar).

 

"One of the great all-time sports films.  Full of participants who are VERY well-spoken about the events that transpired.  Plus, TOMMY LEE JONES!"

 

 

JIRO DREAMS OF SUSHI (2011)

JIRO DREAMS OF SUSHI is David Gelb's quiet yet enthralling documentary that chronicles the life of Jiro Ono, the most famous sushi chef in Tokyo. For most of his 85 years, Jiro has been perfecting the art of making sushi. He works from sunrise to well beyond sunset to taste every piece of fish; meticulously train his employees; and carefully mold and finesse the impeccable presentation of each sushi creation. Although his restaurant Sukiyabashi Jiro only seats ten diners, it is a phenomenon in Tokyo that has won the prestigious 3-Star Michelin review, making him the oldest Michelin chef alive. JIRO DREAMS OF SUSHI chronicles Jiro's life as both an unparalleled success in the culinary world, and as a loving yet complicated father of two.

 

"Not really food porn.  That's not classy enough.  It's "food erotic fiction."  A guy cries trying to make eggs and you want to cry too.  What more do you want?"

 

 

Bill Hader's Picks:

 

INTO THE ABYSS (2011)

In his fascinating exploration of a triple homicide case in Conroe, Texas, master filmmaker Werner Herzog (Cave of Forgotten Dreams, Grizzly Man) probes the human psyche to explore why people kill-and why a state kills. In intimate conversations with those involved, including 28-year-old death row inmate Michael Perry (scheduled to die within eight days of appearing on-screen), Herzog achieves what he describes as "a gaze into the abyss of the human soul." Herzog's inquiries also extend to the families of the victims and perpetrators as well as a state executioner and pastor who've been with death row prisoners as they've taken their final breaths. As he's so often done before, Herzog's investigation unveils layers of humanity, making an enlightening trip out of ominous territory.

 

"The squirrel speech always gets me."

 

 

BILLY WILDER SPEAKS (2006)

Oscar-winning director Volker Schlöndorff's love and admiration for German-born Hollywood director Billy Wilder is apparent in this charming and reverent documentary, which features revealing anecdotes about WIlder's work with famous actors, including Marilyn Monroe, Jack Lemmon and Audrey Hepburn. A must-see for lovers of classic Hollywood cinema.

 

"Candid and insightful interviews with one of the greats."

 

 

CRAZY LOVE (2007)

Dan Klores' CRAZY LOVE tells the astonishing story of the obsessive roller-coaster relationship of Burt and Linda Pugach, which shocked the nation during the summer of 1959. Burt, a 32 year-old married attorney and Linda, a beautiful, single 20 year-old girl living in the Bronx had a whirlwind romance, which culminated in a violent and psychologically complex set of actions that landed the pair's saga on the cover of endless newspapers and magazines. With the cooperation of the principles, Burt, now 79, and Linda, 68, Klores examines the human psyche and the concepts of love, obsession, insanity, hope and forgiveness.

 

"Looking for a funny and charming romance that will leave you feeling light as air?  Then this is definitely not the movie for you."

 

 

DAVID HOLZMAN'S DIARY (1975)

Jim McBride's groundbreaking docu-fiction anticipates the work of a diverse range of filmmakers, including Abbas Kiarostami, Christopher Guest and Sacha Baron Cohen. The more David tries to capture "truth on film", the further away from reality he gets - a fitting metaphor for the confusing time period in which the film was made.

 

"'This random, particular, accidental state... it's so meaningful.' A hilarious take on Cinema Verite from 1968 that's just as relevant today."

 

 

GATES OF HEAVEN (2005)

Errol Morris's film immediately attracted acclaim for its straight-faced treatment of a subject practically begging for ridicule. When the Foothill Memorial Gardens pet cemetery closed, the 450 animals interred there had to be moved to Bubbling Well Memorial Park in nearby Napa. Morris saw the transfer as an opportunity to explore the world of pet owners who are so devoted that they see nothing wrong with giving their animals a full dose of the last rites.

 

"A film that sparked Errol Morris's brilliant career and caused a man to eat a shoe onstage."

 

 

THE THIN BLUE LINE (1988)

Errol Morris's film is the fascinating, controversial true story of the arrest and conviction of Randall Adams for the murder of a Dallas policeman in 1976. Billed as "the first movie mystery to actually solve a murder," the film is credited with overturning the conviction of Randall Dale Adams for the murder of Dallas police officer Robert Wood, a crime for which Adams was sentenced to death. With its use of expressionistic reenactments, interview material and music by Philip Glass, it pioneered a new kind of non-fiction filmmaking. Its style has been copied in countless reality-based television programs and feature films.

 

"The true crime classic and one of my first loves of documentary. (And, no I'm not gonna make a milkshake joke here)."