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Prog Rock Britannia

   2009    Art
Documentary about progressive music and the generation of bands that were involved, from the international success stories of Yes, Genesis, ELP, King Crimson and Jethro Tull to the trials and tribulations of lesser-known bands such as Caravan and Egg. The film is structured in three parts, charting the birth, rise and decline of a movement famed for complex musical structures, weird time signatures, technical virtuosity and strange, and quintessentially English, literary influences.
It looks at the psychedelic pop scene that gave birth to progressive rock in the late 1960s, the golden age of progressive music in the early 1970s, complete with drum solos and gatefold record sleeves, and the over-ambition, commercialisation and eventual fall from grace of this rarefied musical experiment at the hands of punk in 1977. Contributors include Robert Wyatt, Mike Oldfield, Pete Sinfield, Rick Wakeman, Phil Collins, Arthur Brown, Carl Palmer and Ian Anderson.

Genesis. Where Are We Coming From

   2005    Nature
The cycle of life of a handful of different animals is captured on film in a whole new way in this documentary. Using special motion-control photography equipment, Genesis allows filmgoers to view animal behaviors which are too small, too slow, or too difficult to normally be seen with the naked eye, including a chick hatching its way out from inside an egg, jellyfish drying into nothing under the heat of the sun, or a snake slowly swallowing prey bigger than itself. This footage is accompanied by narration from Sotigui Kouyate, who uses simple props and easily understandable analogies to explain the science behind what its shown on screen. Genesis was directed by Claude Nuridsany and Marie Perennou, who previously created another acclaimed scientific documentary, Microcosmos.

Art Rock

   2007    Art
Rock became a vehicle for artistic ideas and theatrical performance. From the pop-art multi-media experiments of Andy Warhol and the Velvet Underground to the sinister gentility of Peter Gabriel's Genesis. We follow Pink Floyd from the fated art school genius of Syd Barrett through the global success of Dark Side of the Moon. The film explores the retro-futurism of Roxy Music and the protean world of David Bowie.
Series: Seven Ages of Rock

Fractals Hunting the Hidden Dimension

   2010    Science
The ultimate adventure in scientific inquiry, this fascinating program follows the exploits of a small group of pioneering mathematicians who discovered a whole area of study that is revolutionizing all branches of understanding in the world: fractal geometry. Fractals are most recognized as a series of circular shapes with a border surrounded by jagged "tail-like" objects. The program, aimed at the average viewer does a fine job of explaining the background of fractals, first by beginning with the story of Pixar co-founder, Loren Carpenter's work at Boeing, developing 3D terrain from scratch using fractals. From there the program starts at the beginning with an introduction to Benoit Mandelbrot and his revolutionary work. The explanations are full of solid factual information but never talk above the level of a viewer who has some understanding of basic mathematical principles. Once the concept is presented the program spends the rest of the time showing how prevalent the fractal is in life. For a program about a mathematical concept, "Fractals" is very engaging, showing how the process was applied to special effects as far back as the Genesis planet from "Star Trek II" all the way to the spectacular finale on Mustafar in "Star Wars: Episode III." I found myself astonished at how fractals were the source of the lava in constant motion and action during the Obi-Wan/Anakin fight. What is more amazing is when the program delves into practical applications such as cell phone antennas, and eventually the human body. For the average person who enjoys watching science related programs, even on a sporadic basis, "Fractals" will prove to be a very worthwhile experience. The program is well produced, integrating talking head interviews (including some with Mandelbrot himself) with standard "in the field" footage. The structure of the program is very logical and never finds itself jumping around without direction. In simplest terms, this is a program as elegant as the designs it focuses on.

Some of the Things That Molecules Do

   2014    Science    HD
The story begins with Tyson sitting at a campfire, and telling how the wolf changed through artificial selection, and selective breeding into the dog breeds around today. He then enters the Ship of Imagination, and explains natural selection with the process that helped to create the polar bears. Along the way he talks about DNA, genes and mutation. Next he goes to a forest and describes the Tree of life, this leads him to discussing the evolution of the eye. He then discusses extinction, by going to a monument called the Halls of Extinction, dedicated to the broken branches of the tree of life. Explaining the five great Extinction events. He then tells how some life has survived, and then focuses on the tardigrade. From there he talks about what other kinds of life might have been created on other worlds. He then goes to Saturn's moon Titan. From there he speculates about life and how it first began. He then returns to Earth and tells about abiogenesis and how life changed and evolved. The show ends with an animated sequence from the original series of life's evolution from one cell to humans.
Series: Cosmos 2014
The Germanic Tribes
The Germanic Tribes

   2007    History

   2015    Medicine
Through the Wormhole
Through the Wormhole

   2011    Science
How Art Made the World
How Art Made the World

   2006    Art
Enemies of Reason
Enemies of Reason