Broadly considered a brand that inspires fervour and defines cool consumerism, Apple has become one of the biggest corporations in the world, fuelled by game-changing products that tap into modern desires. Its leader, Steve Jobs, was a long-haired college dropout with infinite ambition, and an inspirational perfectionist with a bully’s temper. A man of contradictions, he fused a Californian counterculture attitude and a mastery of the art of hype with explosive advances in computer technology.(59 min)
This documentary was the Official Golden Harvest tribute to the master of the Martial Arts Film, 4 years after the 33 year-old Bruce Lee died of cerebral edema. His stature has only grown with time. There has been 50 or so documentaries and films made about him including the excellent 2011 I am Bruce Lee. (86 min)
I’ve been reading the book “Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World” by Jack Weatherford which was a 2004 New York Times best seller. Through extensive research, Weatherford makes a convincing argument that Genghis Khan was an excellent and noble king contrary to the traditional Western image of him as a bloodthirsty pagan.
Pursuing the notion that Genghis Khan was the noblest of kings, this great movie from 2007, spoken in Mongolian with English subtitles brings the beauty and brutality of ancient Mongolia to life. The epic film recounts the story of a young Genghis Khan and how events in his early life lead him to become a legendary conqueror. The 9-year-old Temüjin is taken on a trip by his father to select a girl as his future wife. He meets Börte, who says she would like to be chosen, which he does. He promises to return after five years to marry her. Temüjin’s father is poisoned on the trip, and dies. As a boy Temüjin passes through starvation, humiliations and even slavery, but later with the help of Börte he overcomes all of his childhood hardships to become one of the greatest conquerors the world has ever known.
Let’s Get Lost is an American documentary film about the turbulent life and career of jazz trumpeter Chet Baker written and directed by Bruce Weber. When Baker died in 1988, he was demonized and dismissed as a musician because of his love affair with heroin. This Academy Award-nominated film didn’t pull any punches but also highlighted his genius and brought him back from obscurity. Now more Chet Baker records are sold than ever in his lifetime. (120 min)
This biography is about Mexican painter Frida Kahlo, a woman who gracefully balanced a private life of illness and pain against a public persona that was flamboyant, irreverent and world-renowned. Kahlo was an eyewitness to a unique pairing of revolution and renaissance that defined the times in which she lived.
Kahlo is best known for dozens of self-portraits through which she tells the story of her dramatic life. She was severely injured in a bus accident at 18, and her paintings reflect the debilitating effects she endured for the rest of her life: 35 operations, body casts, metal corsets, constant pain and the inability to bear a child. Kahlo’s work also reflects her passionate love affairs (including a brief one with Russian revolutionary Leon Trotsky), and her turbulent marriage to Mexican muralist painter Diego Rivera. Segment 1 (11 min)
Frank Gehry is that rare kind of architect who has garnered both critical acclaim and popular fame. Not since Frank Lloyd Wright has an architect been such a household name. Gehry’s designs dramatically blur the line between art and architecture, yet the strong appeal of his sculptural designs does not obscure the role of function. He follows a painstaking process of subtle vision and revision both in his sketches and in his model shop. (83 min)
Through interviews with friends, former colleagues and business associates, Bloomberg’s GAME CHANGERS reveals the many layers of the intensely private Steve Jobs – his style of leadership, management and creative process. Interviews include Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, former Apple CEO John Scully, journalist turned Venture Capitalist Michael Moritz, Dreamworks CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg, former Apple “Mac Evangelist” and Silicon Valley Entrepreneur, Guy Kawasaki and Robert X.Cringely, technology journalist and former Apple employee. (48 min)
Segment 1 (10 min)
Narrated by Simon Schama, this episode of the BBC documentary series Power of Art, is on the life of Gian Lorenzo Bernini (Naples, 1598 – Rome, 1680), an Italian artist who worked principally in Rome. He was the leading sculptor of his age and also a prominent architect. In addition he painted, wrote plays, and designed metalwork and stage sets.
A student of Classical sculpture, Bernini possessed the unique ability to capture, in marble, the essence of a narrative moment with a dramatic naturalistic realism which was almost shocking. This ensured that he effectively became the successor of Michelangelo, far outshining other sculptors of his generation. (58 min)
Released in 2000, this was the first major documentary profiling the life of Freddie Mercury outside the world of the rock band Queen. It tells the story of Freddie’s life, and recreates his early life in Zanzibar and India, his early days in England, his life in Queen, his solo projects and collaboration with Montserrat Caballe, and his illness and death.
The excellent documentary features contributions from many people closest to Freddie – his mother Jer Bulsara, sister Kashmira Cooke, Brian May, long term partner Jim Hutton, former girlfriend and longterm friend Mary Austin, personal assistant Peter Freestone, best friend Peter Straker, and numerous other people who knew Freddie as socially or through Queen projects. Segment 1 (10:36 min)