Docs In Theaters: ‘Lenny Cooke,’ ‘Tim’s Vermeer,’ ‘Unhung Hero’ and More

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Nonfics is not able to review every documentary and nonfiction film released in the U.S. That’s why Docs In Theaters is here to provide at least a guide to all the new releases, without critical thoughts. Where available, we will link to our own review of the film or a review at our sister site, Film School Rejects.

All the Way Through Evening

Directed by Rohan Spong (T Is for Teacher)

Starring Mimi Stern-Wolfe

Official Synopsis: Every year, exuberant “70-something” East Village concert pianist Mimi Stern-Wolfe performs a breathtaking concert of works by her friends, all composers, who were lost to the silent killer of New York City. All the Way Through Evening chronicles the era when the HIV/AIDS pandemic swept through a downtown arts community and ravaged the world. Accompanied by the moving music written by those departed, the film recalls this tragedy with candid interviews from friends, family and the lovers that survived it. Acclaimed wherever it screens, this engaging and poignant documentary charts Mimi’s struggle as she prepares for the concert, and is a true testament to the strength of friendship and the power of music. [Perseus Pictures]

Nonfics Rating: n/a

Now playing at Village East Cinema in New York City.

For details on current and upcoming theatrical openings, check the see the “see it” page on the film’s website.

A Journey to Planet Sanity

Directed by Blake Freeman

Official Synopsis: The film follows Director/Actor Blake Freeman, who takes a 69 year old man named Leroy, on a journey in search of the truth. Leroy’s spent his life savings on trying to protect himself from aliens and paranormal ghost, by entrusting the help of psychics. Upon the discovery of Leroy’s plight, Blake decides he must take Leroy on a hilarious journey across the country to “uncover the truth” of of all things paranormal. From Aliens to Voodoo curses, Blake and Leroy take on them all! [Wunderkind Pictures]

Nonfics rating: n/a

Playing tonight only at the Bijou Metro in Eugene, Oregon.

Also now available on VOD, iTunes, Amazon Instant Video and other digital outlets.

Lenny Cooke

Directed by Ben & Joshua Safdie (Daddy Longlegs)

Editing by Ben Safdie and Nonfics contributor Robert Greene (All In: The Poker Movie)

Starring Lenny Cooke

Official Synopsis: In 2001, Lenny Cooke was the most hyped high school basketball player in the country, ranked above future greats LeBron James, Amar’e Stoudemire and Carmelo Anthony. A decade later, Lenny has never played a minute in the NBA. In this quintessentially American documentary, filmmaking brothers Joshua and Benny Safdie track the unfulfilled destiny of a man for whom superstardom was only just out of reach. [Shop Korn Productions]

Film School Rejects grade: A [Review by Caitlin Hughes]

Now playing at the Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center in New York City. Opens in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, on Wednesday, and in Los Angeles next Friday.

For details on current and upcoming theatrical openings, check the screenings page on the film’s website.


Written, directed and produced by Rob Stewart (Sharkwater)

Executive produced by Gus Van Sant (Act Up!), Brian Stewart (Sharkwater), Rob Merilees, David Hannan and Sandy Campbell

Official Synopsis: Revolution follows Rob Stewart on an adventure from photographer/filmmaker to environmental activist trying to change the world. Stewart faces danger, conflict and drama in his struggle to find the key to empowering the conservation movement so it can affect change on a global scale. The movie begins with the release of Stewart’s film Sharkwater in China, where Stewart soon realizes that — despite his six-year effort to save sharks — their future is in jeopardy. The presence of ever-greater environmental catastrophes means that not only will sharks be wiped out, so too will the oceans, and ultimately, mankind. Stewart realizes that we’ll never solve our environmental crisis using traditional means. His solution is unexpected and revolutionary! [D Films]

Nonfics rating: n/a

Now playing in New York City and Los Angeles.

Also now available on iTunes in Canada.

Tim’s Vermeer

Directed by Teller

Produced by Penn Jillette (The Aristocrats) and Farley Ziegler (The Aristocrats)

Executive produced by Teller, Tim Jenison, Glenn S. Alai (The Aristocrats) and Peter Adam Golden (The Aristocrats)

Featuring Jenison, Jillette, Teller, Martin Mull (The Aristocrats), David Hockney (Superstar: The Life and Times of Andy Warhol)

Official Synopsis: Tim Jenison, a Texas based inventor, attempts to solve one of the greatest mysteries in all art: How did 17th century Dutch Master Johannes Vermeer (Girl with a Pearl Earring) manage to paint so photo-realistically — 150 years before the invention of photography? The epic research project Jenison embarks on to test his theory is as extraordinary as what he discovers. Spanning eight years, Jenison’s adventure takes him to Delft, Holland, where Vermeer painted his masterpieces, on a pilgrimage to the North coast of Yorkshire to meet artist David Hockney, and even to Buckingham Palace to see a Vermeer masterpiece in the collection of the Queen. [Sony Pictures Classics]

Nonfics Rating: ★★★★ [Review by Daniel Walber]

Also see our interview with Jenison here.

Now playing its limited Oscar-qualifying run at the Lincoln Plaza Cinemas in New York City. Opens officially on January 31, 2014.

Unhung Hero

Directed by Brian Spitz (second unit director on Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo)

Produced by Spitz, In-Ah Lee (The Grace Lee Project), Lynn Schmitz and Thomas Brettschneider

Featuring Spitz, Patrick Moote, Dan Savage (Making the Boys), Annie Sprinkle (Inside Deep Throat)

Official Synopsis: When Patrick Moote’s girlfriend rejects his marriage proposal at a UCLA basketball game on the jumbotron, it unfortunately goes viral and hits TV networks worldwide. Days after the heartbreaking debacle, she privately reveals why she can’t be with him forever: Patrick’s small penis size. Unhung Hero follows the real life journey of Patrick as he boldly sets out to expose this extremely personal chapter of his life confronting ex-girlfriends, doctors, anthropologists and even adult film stars. From Witch-Doctors in Papua New Guinea to sex museums in Korea, Patrick has a lot of turf to cover on his globe trotting adventure to finally answer the age old question: Does size matter? [Breaking Glass Pictures]

Nonfics Rating: n/a

Now playing at the Arena Cinema in Los Angeles.

Available on DVD December 10th.

(Editor in Chief)

Christopher Campbell is the founding editor of Nonfics.