Sunday, February 22, 2009

Best documentary.... presented by Bill Maher

My God, I'm turning into a cheerleader. More kudos for letting the directors of the five best documentary-feature nominees have some pretty decent screen time to talk about why they make the kind of films they do, despite the fact that they don't make a lot of money and don't get the kind of recognition that goes to the directors of fifth-rate fiction features. And for getting documentary legend Albert Maysles to direct them — class act all the way.

The winner: Man on Wire, the popular doc about Philippe Petit's historic (and so totally illegal) 1974 tightrope walk between the twin towers. Did I really just see an Oscar-winning filmmaker do a magic 101 trick with a coin given to him by Werner Herzog? It's a wacky, wonderful world

Megan Mylan wins for documentary short Smile Pinki, about doctors who donate their time and expertise to help poor children around the world born with cleft palates. Worthy, worthy, worthy, but not about the Holocaust... that qualifies as a surprise.

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