Author Topic: Grimmest documentaries you've seen  (Read 108813 times)

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #30 on: July 11, 2012, 09:23:16 AM »
Well yesterday I settled down to watch The Donner Party, followed with a second course of Just Melvin.[1]

The first was quite interesting and a bit bleak, but the second was repulsive, on various levels. I was hoping the guy's funeral might have provided a bit of resolution but the guy conducting the ceremony who was calling his daughters into line for just reacting, and insisting that people share good memories ("he was a fantastic mechanic") was infuriating, as was the love Melvin was getting at the hospital. The scene with one of his daughters imploding outside that room while he's on camera in the background getting love from the others he abused will stay with me for a few days, I think.
 1. Why I did this to myself, I'm not quite sure. I guess I'm drawn to the bleak

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #31 on: July 11, 2012, 09:27:41 AM »
Bulgarias Abandoned Children


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Dark Sky

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #32 on: July 11, 2012, 09:44:38 AM »
I don't think its been completely proven to be real, or fake, but its by far a poor man's TalHotBlond.

Catfish is one of my favourite films.  I've now ordered this TalHotBlond film of which you speak, and it's costing me £12.  If it isn't as good as Catfish then I shall be turning to you for a refund.  Just so you know.

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #33 on: July 11, 2012, 11:11:58 AM »
Take it to the courts, peasant.

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #34 on: July 11, 2012, 01:35:25 PM »
The Ross Kemp "Extreme World: Congo" that was on last night was horribly grim, particularly as those things are still going on.

Moribunderast

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #35 on: July 12, 2012, 02:06:51 AM »
I just watched TalHotBlond on the back of this thread. Fascinating story and though I wouldn't label it "grim" like some of the other movies in this thread, watching the whole thing play out does leave you with a sense of hopelessness. My one objection to the film was the narration. Seriously, what on earth compelled them to narrate from the point of view of the murdered man? It didn't add anything and in some instances really took me out of the story as they'd assert things from his opinion to which I'd merely think: You can't possibly know that!

DarkSky, I think you'll enjoy it. I too loved Catfish (and was sad to read after that it may've been a hoax) and this, while presented very differently, is an equally interesting story of internet deception.

Shameless Custard

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #36 on: July 13, 2012, 04:27:26 PM »
I Think We're Alone Now is basically just a big gawp at two lonely, mentally-ill people isn't it. I nearly switched it off a few times when I watched it a couple months back. Reasonably interesting, but mostly left a bad taste in the mouth

Official word on Catfish, according to yer makers, is that it's all true, but they re-shot a lot of bits. Either because they missed capturing them on camera, or to make them seem a bit more fast-paced and exciting than the reality

Though I'm not really convinced, as like a previous poster noted, you can see the acting steaming off them, and all the way through the film. Doesn't really matter though, as it's very entertaining. Dunno how it'd stand-up to a rewatch after you know what's it's all about, mind

Dear Zachary is orrible, but the editing job irked me somewhat too. The volume levels were all over the shop, and it was doing my head in, and pulling me out of the film, which was disturbing enough to take in already. Anyone else think that? Maybe I had a bad copy. It'd go quiet, loud, quiet again. The Nirvana of films.

Heh, seems crazy to be moaning about the editing, of all things, in that film, but what can I say? My ears didn't like it
« Last Edit: July 13, 2012, 05:54:37 PM by Shameless Custard »

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #37 on: July 13, 2012, 05:02:20 PM »
Does anyone know the name of the British documentary that came out a year or two ago about the old gay man who had this young lad with some sort of mental/alcohol problem living with him? That looked grim as fuck.

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #38 on: July 13, 2012, 05:43:04 PM »
Does anyone know the name of the British documentary that came out a year or two ago about the old gay man who had this young lad with some sort of mental/alcohol problem living with him? That looked grim as fuck.

It's called 66 Months, you can watch the trailer or rent it here - https://distrify.com/films/1135

I watched the trailer when someone posted it on here a while back, and I struggled getting through just that.

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #39 on: July 13, 2012, 05:47:45 PM »
Yes, that one, thanks!

ZoyzaSorris

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #40 on: July 14, 2012, 12:16:54 PM »
Watching a very basic online documentary (cant remember the name but it was on youtube I think) about the rape of Nanking late of night on my own whilst feeling already quite mentally fragile was not one of my best ideas with hindsight. Some of the horrendous footage has stayed with me and I wish it hadnt.

Marty McFly

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #41 on: July 14, 2012, 10:11:09 PM »
It's not really a documentary, more a 'true' film, but Christiane F, the German film about a (young) teenage girl who becomes a heroin addict in 1980s Berlin - which would be grim enough on its own without the junkies - and resorts to prostitution to feed her habit. I've only ever seen it once, and I'll always remember when it was, because just after the credits rolled I went online and the news was then breaking that Michael Jackson had died. Horrible, horrible film.

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #42 on: July 15, 2012, 02:45:08 AM »
I think someone may have posted a Youtube on the subject of rape, perhaps in the 'shitstorm' thread, and one of the related vids was a 15 minute thing about prison rape. Just hearing the rapists talking matter of factly about what they did, as if it's no big deal or even normal, is fucking nauseating.

I honestly can't fathom American attitudes towards prison rape. It's not that they ignore it, they seem to actively encourage it.

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #43 on: July 19, 2012, 11:46:59 AM »
It's not really a documentary, more a 'true' film, but Christiane F, the German film about a (young) teenage girl who becomes a heroin addict in 1980s Berlin - which would be grim enough on its own without the junkies - and resorts to prostitution to feed her habit.

A very interesting film indeed (with a cracking soundtrack courtesy of a certain Mr Bowie!). This film perfectly encapsulates life for many youngsters in West Berlin. Imagine that: these young people were living in a walled-in city that existed under the ever-present threat of invasion/annihilation at the hands of the Communist power that surrounded them. West Berlin was never officially part of West Germany, one consequence of this being that young people living in West Berlin were exempt from National Service, which in turn saw West Berlin become a haven for drugs as well as people looking to pursue a 'bohemian' lifestyle. This is why West Berlin always exuded this aura of exotic grittiness that famously attracted the likes of Bowie and Iggy Pop. It's a fascinating place. Needless to say, Bahnhof Zoo has since been utterly transformed.

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #44 on: July 20, 2012, 12:32:06 AM »
Although Capturing the Friedmans is bloody grim, I was moved to tears by the end by the rather heartwarming return of Jesse to his mother. There was a semblance of hope in that film, I feel.

I always find Charles Crumb's part of Crumb quite chilling.

I'm not being particularly original, but these are two of my favourite films - so by default my favourite grimmies.

Both feature successful survivors (David and Robert) from a stock of siblings whose lives have turned out sheer circumstantial opposites, despite being of identically mannered kin. In Capturing The Friedmans it's Jesse who is wrongfully condemned, rather than the other brothers, on the fortuitous accident of his age. He happened to be of a high school age, being home enough to assist with his father's computer classes, whilst his father's long-dormant crimes happened to be finally discovered.

It's a frightening story of a life chewed up by chance, and how everyone connected to that person thereafter spends their life considering, reenacting that turn of chance. At the end there is at least a lot of solace to be found as a viewer in the reconciliation of Jesse and Elaine, Elaine's marriage and David's success in a passionate industry.

R. Crumb and his brothers are a trio of strange individuals. Unlike the Friedmans, they are seemingly from the hard-faced, serious minded 50s world as satirized in Crumb's own comics - no abuse or the sorts of family incidents that one would explain a few developmental kinks into an adult personality.

Comparing it with the Friedmans, there are two sets of brothers who lose on chance: Jesse is put in a real bars-and-concrete prison, but the fameless Crumb brothers have fates which are less angering but more upsetting and hopelessly longing. They're free, but creatively aimless and coping with eccentricities whose expression is self-destruction rather than fame and acclaim - even "high art."

R. Crumb either doesn't want to say, or it does not occur to him, that had his own career not carved a lucrative niche for his revolutionary art, he would plausibly have ended up much like them. So similar are they all. As it is, his life is enviably well-lived. He is very much at peace with the world, and his notoriety has persuaded society to celebrate his eccentricities.

Crumb's own fetishes are of course less extreme than his brother Maxon's impulses towards unsolicited daylight sexual engagement, but Crumb has had the fortune of having his turn-ons enmeshed as an inseperate part of his artistic aesthetic/ public persona... and so had plenty of opportunities to work out the strange erotic associations that still remain childish in Maxon and the late Charles.

Maxon years after the film:


Kishi the Bad Lampshade

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #45 on: July 21, 2012, 11:13:00 AM »
I just watched TalHotBlond on the back of this thread. Fascinating story and though I wouldn't label it "grim" like some of the other movies in this thread, watching the whole thing play out does leave you with a sense of hopelessness. My one objection to the film was the narration. Seriously, what on earth compelled them to narrate from the point of view of the murdered man? It didn't add anything and in some instances really took me out of the story as they'd assert things from his opinion to which I'd merely think: You can't possibly know that!

DarkSky, I think you'll enjoy it. I too loved Catfish (and was sad to read after that it may've been a hoax) and this, while presented very differently, is an equally interesting story of internet deception.

Definitely agree with the narration thing. It was cheesy and also made me uncomfortable sometimes when they'd assert things in that way. To be honest I think I preferred Catfish, the story here was interesting and I suppose they tried to get into psychological insights more but it all seemed to be pretty obvious stuff like "he was in love with a fantasy" - I think the woman in Catfish's grim life spoke for itself rather nicely. As I said I didn't like the narrative/framing device they used here, and I also didn't agree with the implied conclusion that 'talhotblond' was as guilty for the murder as Montgomery and that she should be in jail. For what? Using her daughter's pictures and pretending to be her is definitely urgh and creepy and her family is right to hate her for it (never mind the fact that a crime of 'not being who you really are on the internet' is pretty unenforceable) but at least as far as the story was told in the documentary, it seemed like all she did was tease the two guys, in an attempt to get some attention and live life as a gorgeous young woman for once. One of the lawyers outright said she never incited Montgomery to kill the victim. It was Montgomery who became ridiculously jealous and unstable. Whether 'talhotblond' was fake or not and the fact that it happened over the internet is neither here nor there; if a real-life woman was being a tease to Montgomery and his response was to shoot his 'rival' everyone would agree she was at worst a bit of a bitch and not really responsible for something like murder.

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #46 on: July 21, 2012, 11:58:04 AM »
I'd recommend Jonestown - The Life and Death of Peoples Temple, in which through original (and disturbing) footage, and interviews with the sparse number of survivors and those associated, we explore the cult of Jim Jones, who lead 909 people to their deaths in 1978.

You can watch the whole documentary here -
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iQYoHiM-Uko

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #47 on: July 21, 2012, 07:33:43 PM »
Just watched Jonestown, more or less transfixed by it for the duration. Some of the footage that was able to be caught is extraordinary, and the tragedy is made all the worse by the sense that the commune they were all part of could have been wonderful in a different kind of way. By the last twenty minutes or so of this, I was intermittently a blubbering wreck. I too recommend this.

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #48 on: July 22, 2012, 11:55:18 AM »
Dream Deceivers - The Story Behind James Vance Vs Judas Priest
In 1985 two teenage Judas Priest fans get high and decide to commit suicide via shotgun. One (James Vance) survives but is horribly disfigured. The parents decide to sue Judas Priest for influencing their kids to do it in their song lyrics.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eDsv_oG3KWY

Grim as the boy being interviewed only has half a face. Also it's obvious fairly quickly that lawsuit is a joke, and that the kids had really bad home lives.

Lee Van Cleef

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #49 on: July 22, 2012, 12:19:07 PM »
I'm downloading most of these films now, so expect me to commit suicide in the next month or so.  If someone wants to make a documentary about it, PM me.

Shameless Custard

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #50 on: July 22, 2012, 04:55:14 PM »
Stuck for something to watch in the early hours of this morning, I started looking for serial killer docs on that YouTube on the Xbox

Eventually I opted for the Crime Stories film on John Wayne Gacy

Bloody éll. It made for extremely uncomfortable, grim viewing. It was mainly the interview bits with Gacy himself, where he didn't appear even remotely arsed about offing 33 young men and boys and sticking them under the floorboards in his basement. He even had the gall to deny it, despite him admitting to the murders previously, and you know, all the evidence and bones under his house

His total detachment from what he'd done really got to me. Just so strange to watch. No remorse, no care. Took 33 lives, horribly, and yet he discusses it like he'd dropped a few eggs on the way home

Grim, grim, grim

phes

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #51 on: July 22, 2012, 05:04:40 PM »
conversely, I still get insanely angry when telling people about dropping a tray of eggs on the way home.

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #52 on: July 23, 2012, 08:40:37 AM »
How the fuck can you watch all this stuff? This isn't an attack I am just genuinely curious as to how you can have the stomach for it. I find it hard enough reading the headlines on the front of the papers in the newsagent in the morning when there has been some sort of murder/suicide without being haunted by images for the rest of the day without soaking it up for 90 minutes.

Some of these films sound fascinating but watching them would probably break me.

tookish

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #53 on: July 23, 2012, 09:29:45 AM »
I watched Dear Zachary last night on this thread's (sort of) recommendation. Horrible. I thought it wasn't affecting me much, because all the comments were about how people had 'bawled' throughout it. I felt very still and quiet during it. But my heart plunged with shock when I realised that Zachary was going to die. I honestly thought (somehow) that it would turn out okay.

This again isn't a documentary so much as a 'true film' but A Short Stay In Switzerland is probably the most I've cried at anything in my life.

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #54 on: July 23, 2012, 11:09:06 AM »
Hart 2 Heart

Tony Hart talks about his life and work in an interview recorded before his death. Midway through the documentary cracks in his demeanour suddenly appear (prompted by the interviewer bringing up his relationship with Johnny Ball).

"Johnny? New kid on the block, fucking talentless prick. Used to call himself "the maths wizard" - I prefer Vorderman, at least she has bigger tits."

There then follows some unaired footage of Hart going mental in the studio, stomping on morph and biting the head off Chas before pissing on "The Gallery". He then strips and starts making lewd comments about children sending in their "special artwork".

Interviewer: "Tell me about your state of mind at the time"
Hart: "Well, I wasn't in a good place. Art Attack had just started on ITV and were drawing the audience away from Hartbeat in their droves. All glitter and shit, that show. Neil Buchanan used to taunt me with subtle digs on air. i just snapped. Fucking put Johnny Morris in hospital and spent a couple of weeks in the clink".

The documentary ends with some of the last footage of Hart before his death in 2009. Sadly it was surveillance footage from Police video and CCTV of Hart selling his "wares" near Kings Cross Station. Dirty morph caricatures dressed in fetish gear and committing acts of indecency.

A truly disturbing documentary.

tookish

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #55 on: July 23, 2012, 02:51:28 PM »
Child of Rage was also really, really difficult to watch. Made better by the knowledge that Beth Thomas grew up to be an incredible, inspirational woman despite everything.

Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #56 on: July 23, 2012, 08:18:27 PM »
How the fuck can you watch all this stuff? This isn't an attack I am just genuinely curious as to how you can have the stomach for it. I find it hard enough reading the headlines on the front of the papers in the newsagent in the morning when there has been some sort of murder/suicide without being haunted by images for the rest of the day without soaking it up for 90 minutes.

Some of these films sound fascinating but watching them would probably break me.

By detaching yourself from the subject matter I suppose. I'm used to watching this type of stuff, but the odd thing does get to me.

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #57 on: July 23, 2012, 09:12:03 PM »
A grim serial killer documentary, which I can't remember the name of, but which contained a bit which made me laugh out loud.

It was some time after Fred West's conviction. It contained lots of footage of his police interviews - one of which displayed his unbelievable ineptitude with a scene which still makes me chuckle - in rather poor taste I have to admit.

Simply put, he denied everything, but piece by piece the police were reeling him in.

At one point they'd got him to confess to two of the murders which he claimed were actually accidental killings which he tried to cover up.

He was describing the aftermath of the second one they were aware of. He gruesomely described chopping up the body and burying it in his back garden before saying...

"I just stood their looking at what I'd done and thought - 'That's three now - this has got to stop'"

At which point the police obviously said "Three?"

Caught out he then proceeded to say things along the lines of "Yeah - I was confused obviously at the time and must have thought there was a third one, but it was definitely only two. Thinking about it now I actually remember thinking 'That's two now. This has got to stop.'"

Fred West - the funny murderer.

phes

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #58 on: July 23, 2012, 09:21:21 PM »
Hart 2 Heart

Tony Hart talks about his life and work in an interview recorded before his death. Midway through the documentary cracks in his demeanour suddenly appear (prompted by the interviewer bringing up his relationship with Johnny Ball).

"Johnny? New kid on the block, fucking talentless prick. Used to call himself "the maths wizard" - I prefer Vorderman, at least she has bigger tits."

There then follows some unaired footage of Hart going mental in the studio, stomping on morph and biting the head off Chas before pissing on "The Gallery". He then strips and starts making lewd comments about children sending in their "special artwork".

Interviewer: "Tell me about your state of mind at the time"
Hart: "Well, I wasn't in a good place. Art Attack had just started on ITV and were drawing the audience away from Hartbeat in their droves. All glitter and shit, that show. Neil Buchanan used to taunt me with subtle digs on air. i just snapped. Fucking put Johnny Morris in hospital and spent a couple of weeks in the clink".

The documentary ends with some of the last footage of Hart before his death in 2009. Sadly it was surveillance footage from Police video and CCTV of Hart selling his "wares" near Kings Cross Station. Dirty morph caricatures dressed in fetish gear and committing acts of indecency.

A truly disturbing documentary.

This is incredibly funny or very sad, depending on whether you just made this up. If you did make it up you'll be pleased to know that i'm googling and frowning. If you didn't make it up, please point me in the right direction.

yours

waiting with embarassment on standby

(edit - having just read it properly, i've got the shame face on. But I'll leave my foolishness here for others to smile at.)

Don_Preston

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Re: Grimmest documentaries you've seen
« Reply #59 on: July 23, 2012, 10:43:56 PM »
This is incredibly funny or very sad, depending on whether you just made this up. If you did make it up you'll be pleased to know that i'm googling and frowning. If you didn't make it up, please point me in the right direction.

yours

waiting with embarassment on standby

(edit - having just read it properly, i've got the shame face on. But I'll leave my foolishness here for others to smile at.)

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