Extra Credit

Poster for When We Were KingsAs we have discussed in class, the written medium is not the only way in which we can make an argument.  We try to convince others of our opinion in a plethora of ways, and documentary film is a very effective way to do so.  You have the chance to earn two points of extra credit by watching two of the documentaries below.  You will receive one percentage point each for any of the films you watch (two is the limit).  In order to receive the credit, you need to write a short statement (300-400 words) in which you explain what the director’s thesis was, if they convinced you (Why?  Why not?) and what sort of evidence they provided to support their claims.  The extra credit is due Sunday, July 24 by midnight at the latest.  You can email it to me at ahidalgo@purdue.edu any time before then.

Here are your choices for documentaries.  You can borrow them for free at your public library or watch them through Netflix or rent them at video stores like Blockbuster.  Some of them are also available for free on the web.  Purdue may also have some of them at our library.  Feel free to watch them together and discuss them, but make sure to present your opinion individually.  The thesis may be the same, but the evidence you discuss and your reaction to the film should be different.

I have added the link to the films’ imdb page so you can explore them before you commit to them, but I recommend that you don’t read the summaries, as it will ruin your watching experience.  Please do not choose films that you have already seen but try to get to know new work, which is one of the main goals of this assignment.  If you have questions about what you would like to watch, please email me or talk to me after class and I’ll give you some suggestions.

Babies directed by Thomas Balmès, 2010.  Main topic: childrearing around the world.


Born into Brothes directed by Zana Briski and Ross Kauffman, 2002.  Main topic: children of prostitutes and photography.


Bowling for Columbine directed by Michael Moore, 2002.  Main topic: gun control.


Catfish directed by Henry Joost and Ariel Schulman, 2010.  Main topic: virtual relationships.


Darkon directed by Luke Meyer, 2006.  Main topic: fantasy war games.


DiG! directed by Ondi Timoner, 2004.  Main topic: two indie bands’ journey.


Exit Through the Gift Shop directed by Banksy, 2010.  Main topic: street art.


Fahrenheit 911 directed by Michael Moore, 2004.  Main topic: 9/11.


Food Inc. directed by Robert Kenner, 2008.  Main topic: Corporate versus organic food production.


Gimmer Shelter directed by Albert Maysles, 1970.  Main topic: the Rolling Stones.


Girl 27 directed by David Stenn, 2007.  Main topic: a woman sues MGM studios.


Girlhood directed by Liz Garbus, 2003.  Main topic: girls and crime.


The Gleaners and I directed by Agnes Varda, 2000.  Main topic: Recycling food and objects.


Good Hair directed by Jeff Stilson, 2009.  Main topic: African Americans and hair.


An Inconvenient Truth directed by Davis Guggenheim, 2006.  Main topic: global warming.


Jesus Camp directed by Rachel Grady, 2006.  Main topic: children and Christianity.


Join Us directed by Ondi Timoner, 2007.  Main topic: religious cults.


Mad Hot Ballroom directed by Marilyn Agrelo, 2005.  Main topic: children and dancing.


Made in L.A. directed by Almudena Carracedo, 2007.  Main topic: textile workers.


Man on Wire directed by James Marsh, 2008.  Main topic:  about a man that tight rope walks across the World Trade Center.


More Than a Game directed by Kristopher Belman, 2008.  Main topic: basketball and LeBron James.


The Rape of Europa directed by Richard Berge and Bonni Cohen, 2006.  Main topic: Art stolen during WWII.


Religulous directed by Larry Charles, 2008.  Main topic: atheism and religion.


Roger and Me directed by Michael Moore, 1989.  Main topic: job outsourcing in America.


Sicko directed by Michael Moore, 2007.  Main topic: health care system.


Spellbound directed by Jeffrey Blitz, 2002.  Main topic: spelling bee competitions.


Super Size Me directed by Morgan Spurlock, 2004.  Main topic: fast food and obesity.


Tarnation directed by Jonathan Caouette 2006.  Main topic: mental illness.


Thin directed by Lauren Greenfield, 2006.  Main topic: anorexia.


Trouble the Water directed by Carl Deal and Tia Lessin, 2008.  Main topic: Hurricane Katrina.


V-Day: Until the Violence Stops directed by Abby Epstein, 2003.  Main topic: women’s rights.


When We Were Kings directed by Leon Gast, 1996.  Main topic: the Muhammad Ali v. George Forman championship fight in Zaire.


Who Does She Think She Is? directed by Pamela Tanner Boll and Nancy Kennedy, 2008.  Main topic: motherhood and art.


Young @ Heart directed by Stephen Walker.  Main topic: the elderly and singing.



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