Tag: Documentary

American High School – Guardian Review

Thank you to Julia Raeside for the fantastic reveiw of American High School: Straight Outta Orangeburg. Read the review in full here

 

Alexander Parsons’ impressive score, mixing tinges of the music the kids listen to with his own emotive arrangements. Six episodes of hope, just when it’s needed.

 

American High School follows a charismatic principal and his students over the course of one school year and through their eyes we witness life-changing moments. In the US, life chances for students who graduate high school are often starkly different to those who don’t, a disparity even more marked for African-American pupils.

With the odds often stacked against them we follow the class of 2016 over this, their make-or-break year.

We experience their highs and their lows as they prepare for life after high school. We meet Ivy League hopefuls, male cheerleaders and young mothers on a tough journey into adulthood. This is school as you’ve never seen it before and a unique insight into how it really feels to be young and black in America today.

In the first episode, new principal Dr Peters arrives on a mission to improve grades and discipline, but a mass brawl and the threat of further violence gives him a swift reality check.

Meanwhile, high-achieving pupil Jalena begins college applications, but with college fees costing more than a house, will she even be able to afford to go? Male cheerleader Vernon, and star football player Kordel, each prepare for the big Friday night football game. Can a win for the school help to get Dr Peters’ ambitions back on track?

Producer/Director: Marcus Plowright
Executive Producers: Joe Evans and Neil Crombie
Production Company: Swan Films
Composer: Alexander Parsons

Secret World of Lewis Carroll, Telegraph review: ‘Excellent’

The Secret World of Lewis Carroll, review: ‘excellent’. Martha Kearney’s wonderfully engaging portrait shows us the scandalous and imaginative side of Carroll.

The Secret World of Lewis Carroll (BBC Two) was an excellent programme. Terry Ramsey, Telegraph
Read the article in full here

Extreme Dog Styling
Channel 4, New Year’s Eve

Across America, poodles are being crimped, pimped and dyed to compete in a multi-million-dollar activity. Extreme creative dog grooming is a fiercely competitive world where groomers vie to turn their dogs into ever more outlandish designs, with the owners as colourful as their canine creations.

Every year they come together at the world’s largest grooming event in Hershey, Pennsylvania: the Olympics of creative grooming.

 

The competition has always been dominated by big American groomers. But now, one British dog-lover, Su Eld-Weaver, travels with her poodle, Dobby, in an against-the-odds bid to beat the Americans.

For the first time in history, could a British dog triumph at Hershey? And could Dobby become the first non-American poodle ever to grace the cover of the industry’s prestigious Groomer to Groomer magazine?

 

First Broadcast: Channel 4 – 30th December 2013

Company: Swan Films
Producer: Joe Evans
Director: Marvyn Benoit
Music: Alexander Parsons

 

“Think of the movie Best in Show and ramp it up ten notches.” The Guardian
“Hilariously funny…Simon Callow’s straight-faced narration makes it unmissable.” The Observer
Prepare for your jaws to drop… It’s like the film Best in Show but actual real life.” Heat

Are You a Psychopath? Test Yourself

Broadcasting on Channel 4 at 9pm, Psychopath Night is a two-hour documentary I had the pleasure of scoring, alongside good friends and collaborators Sandy Nuttgens and Spike Scott.

Psychopaths are a ruthless breed who lie, manipulate and sometimes murder with no hint of conscience of remorse. One per cent of the population are classified as psychopathic. There may be one in your office. There could be one on your street. They are all around us, often in positions of power.

Psychopath Night unravels the mystery of this minority, with the help of leading experts. The programme goes inside the minds of psychopaths, finds out how to spot a psychopath, and meets real psychopathic killers.

Life In a Day: The Minicab Office

Life In A Day – The Minicab Office is a heart-warming, funny and surprising documentary about city life seen through the eyes of taxi drivers.

Courtesy Taxis is one of the biggest taxi firms in Norwich, with its 57 drivers and staff manning the office 24 hours a day, there is never a dull moment.

At the weekends the taxi office’s waiting room is usually full of clubbers looking for somewhere warm to eat their late night kebab. During the week Courtesy Taxis hosts all sorts of different characters, from the beloved old couple to the stern businessman, there is always a story to be told.

A ‘mini-rig’ of fixed cameras in both the mini-cab office and within the taxis themselves gives never seen before access to customers, following the story and journey seamlessly.

Producer: Tammy Hoyle
Production Company: Mentorn Media