Transcript: And the Oscar for best documentary goes to! | Apr 23, 2021

ANNOUNCER:
You're listening
to a TVO podcast.
COLIN:
Just a note.
This episode will
contain spoilers.

Welcome to
OnDocs.
A podcast about documentaries
and the stories they tell.
I'm Colin Ellis.
NAM:
And I'm Nam Kiwanuka.
Today we're going to be talking
about not one documentary,
but five. I'm so hyped for this.
All of these five are nominated
for the Best Documentary Feature
at this year's Academy Awards.
COLIN: And those documentaries
are
Time, Collective,
My Octopus Teacher, Crip Camp,
and
The Mole Agent.
We've watched them all,
and we're going to get into
what we like
and don't like about them,
and which one we think
will take home the gold.
NAM: Just think of
this as a cheat sheet
for your Oscar pool.
Is this how you won all those
Oscar pools in the past
in our office, Colin?
COLIN: I only won once.
NAM: (Laughing)
COLIN: And I've given away my
secrets as to how I've done that
in previous episodes.
NAM: Yeah, yeah.
Sure, sure, sure.
COLIN: So, if you want to
go listen back to those to
figure out how
I won that one time.
NAM: And I think the next guest
is one of your secret weapons,
isn't she?
COLIN: Well--
WOMAN: No.
COLIN: She'll--
(Laughing)
She'll tell you herself.
We brought on--
Yes. We do have a special guest.
Her name is Jane Jankovic,
she's TVO's Executive Producer
for Documentaries.
Jane, welcome back to OnDocs,
for what's becoming
an annual tradition.
JANE: Thanks, Colin.
I really love being here.
We had a lot of fun last year,
and we've got some really great
docs to talk about
this year, too.
COLIN: Definitely.
So, the way this worked is
we each kind of picked one doc
to talk about and dissect
for the listener,
and then, you know,
we'll talk about
kind of our predictions
and who we think
should win as well,
and Jane, you're actually
going to start us off.
So, you're going to talk
to us about which doc?
JANE: I'm going to talk
to you about
The Mole Agent.
(Clearing throat)
I love this doc.
I saw the pitch for
this doc when it was still
in pre-production, back in 2017,
and we expressed interest
in trying to get it,
but the big funders swooped in,
and that was that.
We got left in the dust,
but the story is about a woman
who believes herm other is
being abused in a nursing home
where she lives, and she hires
a private investigator
to find out what's
going on in the nursing home.
SERGIO:
(Speaking Spanish)
ROMULO:
(Speaking Spanish)
SERGIO:
(Speaking Spanish)
JANE: The PI puts an ad
in the paper looking for
an 80 or 90-year old man who's
going to be planted in this
nursing home and report on
the abuses that are there.
We witness a lot of,
you know, very funny scenes,
I think very funny scenes,
anyway,
about the screening process,
about who answers the ad,
and then the PI
settles on Sergio,
and he's our guy.
He's, like--
I think he's 83 years old.
He is planted in the nursing
home as a new resident,
but he's really there to spy
and report on the abuses.
There's also a really
charming scene where he's being
equipped with spyware,
like camera glasses,
and a camera pen,
and he's being taught
to use a smartphone
that he never really
quite masters, um...
One review I read described
the opening of the film
as being like a
Pink Panther
movie, you know?
Which I think is
a great way to describe it.
It's very cheeky,
very untraditional,
outside the box,
and I can't imagine anyone
who would start
to watch this doc
and not want to
hang in to see what happens,
but despite the seriousness
of the subject matter,
the film is really good at
cloaking the story in humour
and charm as Sergio
tries to find and report on
his mark, which is
a woman named Sonya.
But along the way
we get to know
a bunch of other women
in the nursing home,
and there's 30 women
and four men,
and the men all appear to
have some sort of dementia.
So, you know, Sergio attracts
a lot of attention.
But, you know, the humour,
what I love about the humour
in this is that it's kind.
It's very kind.
It's not mocking,
it's not cheap.
You know, it would have
been so easy to get laughs
with the dementia patients
in the nursing home,
but it never crosses that line.
It's, um...
More than anything, actually,
the film is really bittersweet,
and very, very poignant.
As the film continues we start
to see the pathos, you know?
There's the stories of romance,
there's a theft in the home
which Sergio
needs to investigate.
Sergio becomes like
a psychotherapist for
some of the residents there,
and then the humour kind of
gives way to, um, like,
the gravity of the abuse that
the residents are experiencing,
living in that nursing home,
but it's not what most people
I think will assume
what the abuse is
at the start of the film.
So, I know a lot of reviews
have given away Sergio's
final report about
the abuses that he witnessed
in the nursing home,
and as you watch the film
it probably does become pretty
obvious as you watch,
you know, um,
but if you haven't read
any of the reviews, don't.
Just let yourself, you know,
follow the breadcrumbs
and get to the end in
the same way that Sergio does,
and lovely, lovely film.
And, you know, even, it--
um, it takes place in Chile,
and it's all English subtitles,
but please don't be
intimidated by that.
It is so easy to
slip into this film
and just sit back
and enjoy the story.
Um, yeah.
So, please, do not be
put off by English subtitles.
Super, super easy.
In fact, if you've never
watched a film with
English subtitles,
make this your first film.
NAM & COLIN: (Laughing)
JANE:
And you will be a convert.
COLIN: This is--
That was really well-said,
and I'm just going to
say right off the top,
this was my favourite
of the nominees.
I loved this film.
I had really no idea
what it was about.
I read the synopsis,
I was kind of like,
"Okay, guy in a nursing home,"
but I fell in love with it.
I love Sergio so much,
I think--
You know, and I don't want
to give too much away as well,
but I think there was one
scene that made me, really--
that was really heartbreaking,
was this woman who is waiting
for her mom to pick her up,
and she's, you know,
she's obviously
an elderly woman,
and obviously her mom
had passed away,
and the staff are pretending
to be her mom on the phone,
and it's just
heartbreaking to watch,
and I think, you know, again,
I don't want to say too much,
but I think it resonates
right now I think
because of the situation
with long-term care homes
during COVID, and, you know,
we're I think now being forced
to really look at how
we treat the elderly,
but again, this movie
has a lot of humour.
That opening scene where
they're interviewing all the--
the candidates for this pos--
for this job of being
a spy is just hilarious,
and it's not what
you would expect.
It has everything.
The doc has everything
I want in a film.
It's just got
a beautiful, compelling story,
and characters that
really stay with you.
JANE: Yeah.
Please go and watch it. Find it.
COLIN: Absolutely. Yeah.
Well, that was-- that was
the wonderful
Mole Agent,
and now I'm going to talk
a little bit about
Time,
and it is directed
by Garrett Bradley,
and it follows this woman who's
named Sibil Fox Richardson.
She's fighting for
the release of her husband,
who's been serving
a 60-year prison sentence
for armed robbery.
(Phone ringing)
WOMAN: Judge's office.

SIBIL:
My name is Sibil Richardson,
and my family is
waiting on a ruling
regarding my husband's matter.
I was just wondering if you
might have any information on,
like, an update on it? If it's--
WOMAN:
No, we don't have anything.
You have to check
with us on Monday.
SIBIL:
Yes, ma'am. Thank you so much.
WOMAN: Okay, alright.
SIBIL: Have a good weekend.
Bye-bye.

This is Sibil. Again.
WOMAN: Hi.
Mm-hm.
No, we don't have anything.
SIBIL:
Alrighty. Thank you so much.
My twins will be 18 next month.
They have absolutely
no idea what it means to have
a father in the house,
what fathers even do.
GIRL: Mama!
(Shouting indistinctly)
COLIN: And the movie's
a bit of a mix of, you know,
archival footage, like,
that Richardson shot of
herself at home with her kids.
It's mostly talking to
her in front of a camera,
talking about her husband,
how much she misses him,
and then obviously
the director is following
sort of an eye-on-the-wall
approach,
or fly-on-the-wall approach,
and a couple things I really
liked about the film is
they chose a very
charismatic subject.
So, Sibil's just
this really articulate,
very genuine in her
love of her husband,
and, you know,
she's been with him the 20 years
that he's been locked up.
She's, you know,
a mix of motivational speaker,
and she's also a businesswoman,
and she's also
a prison abolitionist,
which the film
sort of touches on,
but doesn't go too
much in depth on.
Sort of giving you kind of
a taste of what the prison
abolition movement is like,
but doesn't really go into the--
to the details too much.
They're more interested
in the family story.
Um, I really liked
the cinematography of this film.
It's all shot in
black and white.
It's beautiful,
the score is really lovely,
and again, I mentioned
prison abolition before.
I think this movie makes a good
case for why prison sentences
don't need to be nearly as long
as they are, and, you know,
the crime that Richardson
has been convicted of is
armed robbery,
no one was killed.
I don't think
anyone was hurt either,
but he was sentenced to
something like 60 years,
and I just think
for a crime that--
you know, like that,
obviously it's serious,
but I don't think it
needs to be that long,
and I think the film also,
you know,
kind of does a good job of
showing just the importance of
having family when
you're locked away.
So, obviously,
Rob is being helped
in his case by his wife,
you know, doing everything
she can to basically get him
out of jail,
and her determination
and dedication to him is
kind of-- is very remarkable
considering the odds
that are put against them
just because of the bureaucracy
that she has to go through
just to even get
a phone call with him.
There's actually a really great
scene where she's trying to
talk to him on the phone
and then the prison's
automated voice message
comes on and says,
"Thank you for your call.
Your time is up,"
or something like that.
It's heartbreaking to watch
things like that, but--
So, overall,
I would say I enjoy the film.
I think I would have liked
to have learned more about
prison abolition. I guess that's
something that interests me,
but I think showing it from
this family's point of view
is a really,
an interesting way into it.
NAM:
I watched a little bit of it
and I was telling you and Jane
how it kind of triggered me
and I stopped watching it.
You mentioned that
scene when the phone call
just kind of cuts off,
and at one point
in the documentary,
she's, you know, she's just
been hung up on the phone
by somebody, and she says how
she has to be a certain way,
even when people
treat her and dismiss her,
she has to be a certain way.
Like, she always has to be, um,
in control of how she feels,
and my heart just broke for her,
and I stopped watching it,
but I did,
I loved what I saw.
COLIN: Yeah,
I'm interested to hear you say
you were triggered by it.
So, was there
something in particular?
I don't know if
you're comfortable saying.
NAM: Just this idea--
Well, I mean, to get in
the personal, in the past
year my father has been
in and out of jail, and he--
the thought of him going back,
especially against
the backdrop of COVID
has been very stressful,
and yeah, so, I really want--
Maybe I can watch it
in a few months,
but I did love
the cinematography as well.
COLIN: Yeah.
NAM: Yeah. That--
COLIN: Yeah.
NAM: I'll talk about
what my pick was.
So, my pick was
Crip Camp,
and on the surface
it's a documentary about a camp
for children with disabilities,
but underneath it is
so much bigger than that.
One camper
describes it as a utopia
for when they were there,
because there was
no outside world.
MAN #1: I wanted to be
part of the world,
but I didn't see
anyone like me in it.
I hear about a summer
camp for the handicapped
run by Hairpiece.
Somebody said,
"You probably will smoke dope
with the counsellors,"
and I'm like, "Sign me up!"
♪ Freedom, freedom ♪
WOMAN #1: Come to Camp Jened
and find yourself.
WOMAN #2: There I was.
I was at Woodstock.
♪ Freedom ♪
MAN #2: You wouldn't be picked
to be on the team back home,
but at Jened,
you had to go up to bat.
WOMAN #3:
Even when we were that young,
we helped empower each other.
It was allowing us to
recognize that the status quo
is not what it needed to be.
NAM: So, question for either one
of you.
Did you go to summer camp?
COLIN: I think I did, yeah.
I don't think I had
a very good time, though.
NAM: No? How about you, Jane?
JANE: No, I don't remember.
I think I went to a camp once
for a week, but it wasn't--
it wasn't part of, um,
the culture in
the area where I was from,
to send your kids off to camp,
you know?
So, no. Never been to camp.
NAM: I went to one camp.
My granny sent me
to a church camp,
Huron Church Camp,
and I remember feeling
really excited about going,
but also really anxious.
Well,
Crip Camp
is about a camp,
it's call Camp Jened, um,
and it's so much bigger
than just a camp.
It was started by a man named
Larry Allison in the 50's,
and the camp closed
in the late 70's.
So, the documentary focuses
on the class of 1971.
Early on in the documentary
you see this tranquil scene
in the Catskills,
and a counsellor says that they
had never seen so many
disabled people in one place,
and that he became
frozen in fear.
And then, a former camper
says that it was a place where
teenagers could be teenagers
without any stereotypes.
So, you immediately you kind
of get that juxtaposition
of these two different thoughts.
Um, two different perspectives.
So, the campers talk
about what life is like
in the outside world.
How one was denied
going to school
because of their disability,
and that the principal
of the school had described
them as a fire hazard.
The campers talk about
how their parents treat them.
How they're denied privacy.
One of the campers, like,
you know, it's a basic right,
were denied privacy because
their parents have to
help them do certain things,
and then they also ask,
you know,
are parents being overprotective
or is fear motivating how, um,
these kids are being treated
by the people who love them?
Because you would think that
they're going to do everything,
um, to benefit these kids,
but in the process they don't
realize that they're
actually hurting them.
And then there's--
(Laughing)
There's a lot of funny moments,
but there is one moment when
the campers are dealing with--
I don't know how to say this.
They're battling
with, um, crabs.
COLIN: Yes. Not the--
Not the, uh,
the kind that you
find in the sea.
NAM: Not the ones--
Yeah, not the ones
you find at Red Lobster.
But, um, yeah.
But it was just so--
'Cause it's just something
you could hear, you know...
It was just such
a normal thing, right?
But in the outside world
they would have just been
excluded from having
that teenage experience.
So, the documentary
forces the audience to,
um, to actually look at
how prejudiced we are to
the disabled community.
How, uh, how the world has been
set up to push and forget
and to dismiss
people with disabilities
from something like transit.
How transit is designed
for able-bodied people.
Um, and anyway, we find out
so much more of the role
they have played in history
with the 504 Sit-Ins,
um, and the role that they
played with the Americans--
The ADA Law.
The Americas with
Disabilities Act.
And can I just talk
quickly about Judy?
Um, Judy--
COLIN: Yeah, she's kind
of the leader of the--
NAM: Yeah.
COLIN: --the Disability
Rights Movement.
NAM: Yeah, and she was a camper.
She was a counsellor
at the camp,
and early on there's
a scene where she's telling
the campers,
"We don't have a cook for,
I think, Wednesday.
So, let's figure out
what we're going to eat."
She's like, "Who wants lasagna?
Who doesn't want lasagna?"
And some people like lasagna,
some people don't like lasagna.
Then the interviewer asked her,
why is that important?
To get a general consensus.
And she said it's important
to let people know that their
voices are being heard,
and I just feel like she's such
an exceptional leader,
and as a society,
we really need to,
um, challenge ourselves,
or rethink what we
consider to be a leader.
We always think that it's,
you know, a man in a suit,
very strong, and very
doesn't take no nonsense,
and she is the opposite,
and she was such
an exceptional leader,
um, and I wish...
I would just love to have
a documentary just on her.
But I really loved
the documentary.
It's exceptional.
COLIN:
Judy Heumann is her full name,
I should just mention.
NAM: Yeah.
COLIN:
Yeah, I really liked it, too.
It's, you know,
a very good overview of
the Disability Rights Movement,
and some of
the internal issues they had.
I really like that it kind
of showed just how important
social movements were
to pushing for change,
like legislative change,
because often I think people
don't realize, like, just how
you need those movements to get
politicians to
actually do anything
and put pressure on,
uh, presidents
and secretaries of state
or secretaries of labour
or whatever to
make those changes.
So, I thought it was really
good at kind of exposing that
and how--
just how hard that work is.
And, yeah, I really thought it
was-- it was very well done.
JANE: I liked it, too.
I thought it was story--
It's about a revolutionary camp
for disabled people that
actually lead to a revolution,
you know?
So, it has a great amount
of symmetry in that way,
and this camp was
their Woodstock, you know?
It was sex, drugs,
and rock and roll.
NAM: Exactly!
(Laughing)
JANE: Not how you think
about how, you know,
disabled people
interact with each other,
whether it's
a physical disability
or a cognitive disability.
So, it's a real stand-out,
not only for its historical
significance that you
both have mentioned,
but it also allowed us to
see who disabled people are
when they're not
sidelined by society.
There's a great line,
I can't remember who says it,
in there. There's a couple of
good lines that stayed with me,
you know, where one person says,
"It gave-- It allowed--
gave us permission to
dare to think what--
that their lives
could be better."
And then there's another
great line where somebody says,
you know, you don't know
what to strive for unless--
if you don't know it exists,
and this camp gave them that
window into our
lives could be better
so let's, you know,
let's try and make that happen.
So, um, yeah, it's amazing.
You know, and then they get what
they were able to accomplish,
and talking of Judy,
there's that one scene--
Well, there's a couple of
scenes with her in particular,
but, you know,
she talks about how,
"I'm so tired of being
grateful that you gave me--"
NAM:
To have a toilet, yeah.
JANE: "I'm so tired of that,
you know?"
Like, why do
I have to be grateful
to be able to
participate in the world?
NAM: Could I just
add one more thing, too?
When you said a great line,
another line that sort of
stood out to me was,
"The world wants us dead.
We live with that.
You have to learn how to thrive
or you won't make it."
JANE: Mm-hm.
NAM: And I think that
kind of just stuck with me,
and when you talk about
sex, drugs, and rock & roll,
Denise, who also--
JANE: Oh!
NAM:
Another camper that I loved,
at one point she
has a stomach ache,
she goes to the hospital,
and they take out her appendix.
JANE: Mm-hm.
NAM: They didn't
check her for having an STD.
She actually ends up
having gonorrhea,
but they took out her appendix
because the surgeon
just assumed that
someone that looked like her
could not possibly
be sexually active.
I mean,
talk about complete erasure.
Her body was physically maimed
when it didn't need to be
because of somebody's prejudice.
And so, that just kind
of stuck with me as well.
JANE: And also,
her pride in getting gonorrhea,
which I thought--
NAM: Yes! I loved that!
(Laughing)
JANE:
Made out with the bus driver.
She was so proud of it.
She said,
"I don't want to die a virgin."
COLIN: (Laughing)
If I'm not mistaken, I think she
has a masters in sexuality,
too, as well.
NAM: She did. Yeah, yeah, yeah.
And yeah.
She was great. I loved her.
And she cursed a lot
in the documentary, too.
JANE: Yeah, yeah.
COLIN: Yeah, no.
Excellent film. Good choice.
I'm going to talk a little bit
about the last two nominees.
They're both very good films.
One of them is
called
Collective,
and this is a doc
that's from Romania,
it's about this horrific
fire at a night club that
killed 27 people, injured 180,
but then what happens
next is even worse.
37 more people die
from their injuries
because of the inadequate
medical care at the hospitals,
and the film is basically
tracing the investigation
into just this inept bureaucracy
and healthcare system,
totally corrupt.
The journalists that are doing
this story are absolute heroes.
There are plot twists
along the way.
There's a minister
who's appointed,
who's kind of trying to
reform the system from within.
I would just say
that if you're interested
in investigative journalism,
corruption stories,
if you ever liked the movie
Spotlight
or if you like,
you know, stuff about, like,
Watergate,
you gotta check this movie out.
It's just incredible,
especially considering
it's talking about
the healthcare system as well.
We have our own
issues with that here.
And, I don't know
about its Oscar chances,
but it's a really,
really strong movie.
NAM: I just wanted to
say that it was excellent,
and I think we live
in a world now where--
where, you know,
when you work in journalism,
you're swatting away
misinformation,
disinformation, and you--
you're dealing with a
public that has grown to
distrust the media,
um, and watching this,
it just reinforced why
I wanted to get into journalism.
Um, and it's the-- the-
The things that they go against
and how they pushed through that
just makes me
want to work harder.
I think investigative
journalists are of a different,
you know, make, because it's
mostly something--
when you do-- you do really
important work,
and work that leads to laws
being changed,
and now we just kinda live in a
world where that work
is being dismissed,
or people are being,
you know, very suspicious of
journalists,
and, uh, yeah, but this
documentary
reinforced my love
for this field.
JANE:
Well said, Nam.
I couldn't agree with you more,
and, um,
just to reiterate or build on
what's been said already,
this film truly falls into the
category that if it wasn't true,
you'd be hard pressed
to believe the depravity.
The situation that led to the
layers of corruption
that are unfathomable, and the
cost of that corruption.
Um, so between the journalists
that do the investigation
that uncover the fact
that basically, these hospitals
were not using disinfectant.
The disinfectant had been
diluted to the point
of not being effective at all.
You might as well just run a
scalpel under the faucet,
your water faucet,
and that was about it.
They weren't always dying from
the wounds from that fire,
they died from the infections
that they were catching
in the hospitals.
So there's that investigation
that leads to the resignation
of the government, an interim
government comes in place,
the new minister of health.
What I love is that we're
learning at the same time
as everybody in the film,
what the heck is going on.
You know, there were so many WTF
moments in that film,
and you're learning it
in real time.
So this, you know,
health minister,
some of my favourite scenes were
really when he's trying
to understand who is
responsible, and it's like...
you know that whole Abbott and
Costello routine,
"Who's On First?"
(Colin laughing)
COLIN:
That's my favourite.
JANE: And it's like,
his own government team!
It was bizarre!
It was just bizarre!
And he's in disbelief.
As a viewer, I'm thinking,
"You've got to be kidding me."
Like...
And the bureaucrats think
it's all normal!
But it, you know, it's not!
And then the re-election.
So, you know, the corrupt
government had to resign,
interim government,
new election,
the old government party wants
to get elected again,
because they were making
a lot of money off this crap.
And, um, what happens is
a very Trump-like
election campaign ploy
where they old governing party
creates a fake healthcare crisis
and blames the interim
government for it,
and then despite everything
that's happened,
and everything that's been
uncovered,
that old government gets
re-elected,
with an overwhelming majority.
NAM: It makes you want to pull
out your hair.
JANE:
It does! It does!
But you know, it's a really
great to doc to see, like,
how that happens, 'cause it
happens over and over again.
Around the world, right? So...
COLIN: And Nam, what you said,
just about the importance of
investigative journalism,
the journalists are actually
given a round of applause.
JANE:
Mm-hm.
COLIN: In this film,
from an audience.
I thought that was incredible,
'cause I don't really see that
happening over on this
side of the world,
but that's for a whole
other show.
I'm gonna talk a little--
just a little bit about
My Octopus Teacher.
You know,
we did an episode on this
a few months back
with our former producer,
Chantal Braganza,
and I would refer people to go
listen to that.
I'll just say, you know,
if you haven't heard of it,
it's this great doc on Netflix
about a guy named Craig Foster,
he's a filmmaker, and his
relationship with an octopus.
And it's a really wonderful
story, you know?
It's-- it kind of shows you
just how intelligent
octopus are.
Octopi? Sorry, I never know
which one to say.
Yeah, and it's, uh,
just a very moving story.
Again, listen to the episode,
it's definitely available
online.
And I would say it's--
my love for it hasn't...
It's kind of dwindled a little
bit in terms of my rankings,
but I guess we can talk about
our rankings in a second,
just the films we've seen,
but I think it's--
it's definitely got a chance,
and maybe this will--
this kind of brings us to our
final chapter here,
where we're just going to chat
a little bit about which film
we think is going to
actually win,
and maybe which film should win.
So maybe, Nam,
I'll start with you.
Which of these five nominees
do you think is going to win?
NAM: Um, I-- is it bad taste
to root for the one
that I was advocating for?
(Laughing)
COLIN: No, it's not
bad taste at all!
That's what you're--
that's what you're here for.
(All laughing)
NAM: So I think
Crip Camp,
because I...
Um, you know, one of the themes
in the documentary
was this idea of infantilizing
disabled people,
and this documentary
does not do that.
Um, it is raw, it is funny.
The role that they played in
history-- if you think about it,
if they didn't become
a collective
and march to Washington,
or fight for--
demand for their rights,
who would have done it?
You know, there's a scene in the
documentary where, uh,
my kids watched this part
with me,
where they are pulling
themselves on the steps,
I think, was this in Washington?
Or they're going to some
government building.
COLIN:
I think it's in California.
JANE:
Yeah, San Francisco.
NAM: Yes, and there's no--
there are no ramps,
there's no access,
so they are pulling themselves
on these steps, and my kids saw
some small kids,
'cause there's little kids
that are participating in
the protest.
and they're pulling
themselves up,
they're pulling up their
wheelchairs on these stairs,
and that's how they came
to have,
um, a law where companies,
especially companies that were
getting federal money
have to build ramps, have to
make buildings accessible.
And I mean, if that's not a
feel-good documentary,
that is power.
That is history in the making.
And they didn't--
they fought for it.
I think the sit-in--
the 504 sittings,
they almost did that for
almost 30 days.
But at one point, one of the
characters was talking,
had got a job as an audio
technician,
and for two years, in the
building that he worked at,
it wasn't accessible for him to
go into the building.
So he had to pull himself up
on the stairs.
Life continues,
and they have to find a way
to live in a world
that wasn't built for them.
So I think that the history in
this documentary
is Oscar-worthy enough, but then
to find out the backstory
of how everybody met,
and they discovered that
there was strength in numbers,
I just think it's wonderful.
And it is funny.
COLIN: What about you, Jane?
Who do you think--
Who do you think is
going to win?
JANE: I think it's going to be
between
Time
and
Crip Camp,
and I'm leaning towards
Time.
I think--
and I think deservedly so.
I think especially given the
year that was,
and, you know, the heightened
awareness around racism
and how it plays out in law
enforcement and incarceration.
I think that will still be very
forward in people's minds.
And, um, this is a very, um...
It's a radical film without
being radical, you know?
COLIN:
Sure, yeah.
JANE: And I think that will
appeal to a lot of voters.
Uh, but I have to saw, you know,
I've been reading
that
My Octopus Teacher
has been
picking steam.
They've been winning a lot of
the big awards.
Certainly it's had the biggest
audience of any--
any doc on the list,
and I know I personally--
I mean, I loved the film,
and I learned a lot of things
from the
Octopus Teacher.
Among them, Colin,
it is "octopuses,"
not "octopi."
COLIN & NAM:
Oh!
JANE:
Yes.
COLIN:
See, I forgot all about that.
JANE:
There you go.
NAM: Hashtag "never stop
learning."
JANE: Never stop learning!
You're right!
You are right. Do you want us to
put our personal favourites
with it as well, or are you
gonna get to that?
COLIN: Yeah, well, I'll tell you
who I think is going to win.
I think-- we were talking about
Time
earlier, yeah,
I think, according to this one
website, GoldDerby.com,
it's predicted to win the Oscar
for best documentary feature.
I don't know how accurate
that website is,
but that's what it says.
I do think that
Octopus Teacher
is picking up steam as well,
though, so I'd be very curious.
It's gonna be an interesting
race. But yeah.
Why don't you tell us,
who do you think should win?
JANE: I have a-- I just, I'm so
in love with
The Mole Agent.
I hope that it will win.
I don't think it will,
'cause foreign language films
don't tend to win,
but it would be nice if it--
if it won. Very nice.
COLIN:
What about you, Nam?
NAM: Um, I think I've said
all I have to say.
No.
(All laughing)
No, I think-- I mean,
selfishly, as a journalist,
I think I would like
The Collective
to win.
But I really loved
Crip Camp.
I think it's one of those
documentaries
that leaves you thinking and
leaves you smiling,
so I hope it wins.
JANE: And it has Obama
Foundation money in it,
you know, so it's--
NAM: Yeah, I didn't know that!
I didn't know that Judy
was actually an advisor
for President Obama, as well.
JANE: Last year, um, the--
what's that called...
American Factory
was also an
Obama Foundation film
and it won the Oscar,
so that may play well or not,
you know, in terms of people's
thoughts,
but
Crip Camp
is great.
COLIN: Jane, I'm like you,
I think
The Mole Agent--
I think that--
I wish that would win.
I-I honestly haven't seen that
many movies from last year,
obviously, because of Covid,
and the ones I've seen,
I haven't really been taken
with, and I think,
honestly, that was the one that
I really--
that stuck with me.
I-- I watched Nomadland
last night,
and I was not thrilled by it,
and it's probably going to
win best picture,
but I don't think it's the
best picture.
I thought
The Mole Agent
was excellent.
And docs-- docs are almost,
I don't think, ever nominated
in the best picture category,
which is a shame,
'cause there's some amazing docs
that come out every year,
and they just never seem to be
recognized by the Academy.
So I hope that
The Mole Agent
wins,
but I don't think it will.
But I'm hoping that people
who listen to this conversation
will be excited to go see it.
JANE: Yeah.
COLIN: Well, Jane, thank you
so much for joining us.
JANE: Oh, so much fun
to be here!
Thank you!
Thanks for inviting me.
NAM: Thanks so much, Jane.
It's been really fun
to talk to you about all this.
JANE:
Yeah, great, good.
I loved it. Loved talking with
you guys, too.

COLIN:
And that's the podcast.
The 93rd Academy Awards will be
on Sunday, April 25th at 8pm.
NAM: While you're here,
why not give us a rating
on Apple Podcasts,
and tell a friend about us?
It helps new listeners
to find the show.
COLIN: You can follow me
on Twitter at ColinEllis81.
NAM: And you can follow me at
NamShine, all one word.
COLIN: Thanks to producer and
editor, Matthew O'Mara.
Senior producer, Katie O'Connor.
Production support coordinators,
Nikki Ashworth
and Jonathan Halliwell,
and executive producer,
Laurie Few.
NAM: Thanks for listening,
and we'll catch you
at the next screening.

Watch: And the Oscar for best documentary goes to!