July 2, 2019

Screen Time: Week of July 1

From PJ Raval's "Call Her Ganda," which premieres July 1 on "POV." Courtesy of PJ Raval.

Screen Time is your curated weekly guide to excellent documentaries and nonfiction programs that you can watch at home.

DA Films is now featuring a collection of four films from legendary Dutch documentarian Joris Ivens. A Valparaíso (1962)  profiles, through images both starkly real and lyrically poetic, the Chilean port city at the center of sea transportation via Latin America before the completion of the Panama Canal, with vast differences between poverty and wealth apparent at first glance. The short Le Petit Chapiteau (1963) was also made during the director’s stay in Chile, capturing the genuine and unflagging enthusiasm of children at a circus show. Rotterdam Europort (1966) is a docu-fiction portrait of the Dutch port city, which was rapidly revitalized after the bombing during World War II. 17th Parallel (1968), made during the director’s journey to Vietnam, depicts civilian life during the War, and the strong anti-American sentiment that prevailed there.

New on MUBI, It’s All Good (Está Todo Bien) is a portrait of two patients, a doctor in training, an activist medication smuggler and a pharmacist on the verge of bankruptcy--all of whom are impacted by the medical crisis amidst the political and economic turmoil in Venezuela. Director Tuki Jencquel focuses on the real human stories rather than facts and statistics as a way to connect with the people affected by this issue.

Joining Netflix’s new line-up this month, Parchis: El Documental premieres July 10. Parchis was a widely popular kid’s band in Spain that sold millions of albums, toured around the world, starred in movies and had several Top 10 hit songs between 1979 and 1985. Through testimonies of its members and those close with the band, this documentary examines the inside experience of these young stars as they navigated their careers and launched into adulthood.

Premiering July 1 on POV, Call Her Ganda calls for justice for Jennifer Laude, a Filipina trans woman who was brutally murdered by a US Marine. Director PJ Raval showcases the fight from an activist attorney, a transgender journalist and Jennifer’s mother, who called her Ganda, meaning “beautiful” in Tagalog. The film exposes the violence and injustice done towards trans people set against the US colonial power in the Philippines.

Marking the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, National Geographic Channel is premiering Apollo: Missions to the Moon on July 7. Emmy-and-Peabody Award-winning director Tom Jennings brings together 1,300 hours of rare and newly transformed footage and audio from the Apollo black box, Mission Control, TV and NASA archives and home videos of those who watched the expedition from their living rooms. With a soundtrack from Hans Zimmer and Russel Emanuel, this two-hour feature tracks the history of the Apollo programs as part of Nat Geo’s Space Week.