The Smithsonian Channel dives into “Russia’s Wild Sea”

The Smithsonian Channel dives into “Russia’s Wild Sea”

Source:  Realscreen

The Smithsonian Channel is prepping a two-part documentary on the Sea of Okhotsk, one of the world’s richest and most dangerous seas.

“Russia’s Wild Sea” explores the wildlife and environment of the sea, located 4,000 miles from Moscow in the far east of Russia, as well as the ingenious adaptations that make life possible in the region despite its many hardships.

Director Franz Hafner and his crew were granted full access to the region, which required arriving by plane and exploring by ship, as no roads reach the shores of the sea.

“Russia’s Wild Sea” premieres June 5 on the Smithsonian Channel with part two airing on June 12.

Watch the trailer and read the story at Realscreen.

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“The Dog Doc” profiles Marty Goldstein, a veterinarian practicing holistic medicine

“The Dog Doc” profiles Marty Goldstein, a veterinarian practicing holistic medicine

Source:  The Hollywood Reporter

Both interpretations of the film’s title, “The Dog Doc,” are accurate.  It’s a canine-centric documentary (with a few cats as background players), and it’s a portrait of veterinarian, Marty Goldstein.

Director Cindy Meehl has crafted an admiring portrait, to be sure, but one that also poses penetrating questions about what passes for health care today in the United States, for people and their pets alike.

At the center of the film is Goldstein’s veterinary practice in upstate New York that’s devoted to lost-cause pets, those with dire diagnoses or unexplained symptoms.

Instead of invasive surgery and pharmaceutical regimens,  Goldstein and his three female colleagues practice integrative veterinary medicine, which combines such alternative therapies as homeopathy and acupuncture with conventional medicine.

That this approach, in 2019, is still considered by many in the medical field to be unusual is amazing.  So too is the fact that immune-system support and nutrition aren’t curriculum topics for most veterinary and medical students.

Goldstein, who’s been swimming against the medical tide for 45 years, may be quietly exasperated, but the film makes its points by demonstrating the effects of his care.

“The Dog Doc” recently screened at the Tribeca Film Festival.

Read the story at The Hollywood Reporter.

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National Geographic’s “Hostile Planet” reveals how animals struggle to survive in six of the most extreme environments on Earth

National Geographic’s “Hostile Planet” reveals how animals struggle to survive in six of the most extreme environments on Earth

Source:  Screen Rant

Between the BBC, Netflix, Discovery, and National Geographic, there’s now a terrific new nature documentary to watch on an almost weekly basis.

And while most succeed in detailing the splendid beauty of life in the animal kingdom, National Geographic’s latest, “Hostile Planet,” demonstrates just how fragile that life can be, and how the Earth’s changing climate isn’t making things any easier.

Narrated by Bear Grylls, the six-episode series shows how animals struggle to survive in six of the most extreme environments on Earth.

Watch the first two episodes of “Hostile Planet” at National Geographic.

Read the story at Screen Rant.

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Essential doc “Tigerland” shines a light on endangered tigers and those fighting for their survival

Essential doc “Tigerland” shines a light on endangered tigers and those fighting for their survival

Source:  IndieWire

You’ll have to wait a while before “Tigerland” introduces its eponymous stars, but like many elements of Ross Kauffman’s emotional, often harrowing new documentary, the eventual reveal will be worth it.

The “E-Team” and “Born Into Brothels” filmmaker has always been concerned with shining a light on those in need of help (or common decency), and for his third feature, Kauffman turns his interest toward a threatened animal population and the humans trying to save them.

While “Tigerland” takes some time to find its footing, kicking off with an odd kid-voiced monologue that attempts to spell out the historical meaning of the tiger and then looping together two seemingly different stories, Kauffman eventually finds connections that go far beyond the superficial.

“Tigerland” premieres March 30 on the Discovery Channel.

Read the story at IndieWire.

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Rob Stewart’s final film “Sharkwater Extinction” again shines a spotlight on the issue of shark preservation

Rob Stewart’s final film “Sharkwater Extinction” again shines a spotlight on the issue of shark preservation

Source:  The Hollywood Reporter

Few filmmakers had as singular a mission as Rob Stewart, who dedicated his life to bringing attention to the increasingly endangered status of sharks across the globe.

Stewart’s life was tragically cut short in 2017 when he died at age 37 in a diving accident while working on what would be his third and final film.

A sequel to his 2006 advocacy documentary “Sharkwater,” “Sharkwater Extinction” serves as a fitting cinematic tribute informing us that while progress has been made, much more work needs to be done.

“Sharkwater Extinction” is available now on iTunes, YouTube, and Google Play.

Read the story at The Hollywood Reporter. 

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“Kifaru” explores the challenges of the ongoing wildlife conservation crisis

“Kifaru” explores the challenges of the ongoing wildlife conservation crisis

Source:  The Hollywood Reporter

Native to the grasslands and savannahs of eastern and southern Africa, rhinoceros are under assault from almost every conceivable direction—poachers coveting the horns of these gentle giants, trophy hunters out for a big game kill, extractive resource initiatives, and local communities seeking to grow and prosper all pose increasing threats.

While the rhino’s precarious survival has been well-publicized, the possibility that smaller populations of the species could actually be wiped out has not perhaps been as widely known. Until a solitary male rhino named Sudan became the international symbol of looming extinction.

“Kifaru,” David Hambridge’s account of efforts to protect the only surviving northern white rhinos in the wild, arrives at a critical stage in the preservation of the species.

Confronting the possibility of extinction through the eyes of a dedicated team assigned as Sudan’s caretakers adds another layer of urgency, transforming the film from competent conservation documentary into compelling real-life drama.

Read the story at The Hollywood Reporter.

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