Live it : DC Beer Week 2011 (starts Sunday)

Everyone who is anyone should check out DC Beer Week this week (starting Sunday Aug 14th).  There are TONS are specials around the city.  Click the link below  for a map and calendar of events. Note: MIDWESTERNERS check out the specials on Wed (below).

DC Beer Week 2011 | DC Beer – Washington DC, Beers in DC, Beer, Bars, Craft beer, homebrewing, happy hours, beer tastings.

Here are a few highlights…

MONDAY AUG 15th : Ladies’ Night – Ladies Drink Beer for Free – 4pm
Belga Cafe – 514 8th Street SE,

TUESDAY: AUG 16th:  All About Brews Trivia Night – 7pm

Bread & Brew – 1247 20th Street NW,
Think you know about beer? Put it to the test during Bread & Brew’s special all-beer trivia. Great prizes and beer specials all night long.

WED AUG 17th : Midwest Brewery Night at Smith Commons – 5pm
Smith Commons – 1245 H Street NE,
Smith Commons will be featuring breweries from a different region of the country for four different nights during DC Beer Week. Wednesday will feature breweries from the midwest. $5 pints, $15 bombers, and $5 regional themed small food pairings. The tentative brewery list for Wednesday includes:

Avery Brewing Co.
Boulder Beer
Oskar Blues Brewery
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Bells Brewery Inc.
Founders Brewing Co.
New Holland Brewing Co.
Jolly Pumpkin Artisan Ales
Schlafly Beer
Epic Brewing Co.

Silverdocs: Free

I’m all about experiencing Silverdocs.  It’s simply a great community event.  Sometimes I feel like jumping into the sold out screenings and sometimes I like to go to the less popular events.  One of those events is the FREE lunch screenings.

What are you doing for lunch?  You could be multi-tasking.  These shorts are lovely.  Most of them are well done and under appreciated by the masses.

Shorts Programs at AFI Silver during Lunchtime (noon): FREE

WED / June 22 @ Noon

THUR / June 23 @ Noon

FRI / June 24 @ Noon

*It’s a different group of shorts everyday!

(just walk in and ask for a ticket – I walked in 10 minutes early without a problem.)

For more information:


What are you doing this weekend?

Doc & a Drink is going to the “Our City Film Festival”.  Our first stop is the opening night party tomorrow (Saturday). It’s open to the public — Join us!

It’s at RFD’s (810 7th St, NW) and everyone knows RFD’s has an excellent beer selection.  Katy and I will be interviewing some of the local documentary filmmakers.  It’s going to be a blast.  It’s only 12.00 and all the money from the festival goes back into the organization.  Buy your tickets online – they will sell out! See you there (8-11pm).

**** Celebrate the opening of the film festival with filmmakers and VIPs.

Enjoy beer specials, great raffle give-aways, and performances by

Grammy nominee, Arts and Humanities Council of Washington grantee

and subject of past OCFF film, Blue Line

Then – this Sunday – is the main event.  The films are all about D.C. The festival is only on Sunday, at The Goethe Institute (812 7th St, NW).  For ticket information and a full schedule check the website:

AND – just added — is the closing event with the D.C Cupcake Girls…

Georgetown Cupcakes’ Sophie and Katherine will be special guests,

screening TLC’s Second Season of DC Cupcakes,Our City

hosting a Q&A, and cupcake decorating contest at the finale.

ONLY 10.00 to attend.  Buy tickets here.


5 out of 5 Cheers.

-becky beamer

Washington D.C Film Festival Next Weekend

Doc & a Drink is very excited to be included in a press screening for the “Our City” Film Festival.  We are getting a sneak peek on Thur but everyone else can go to the events next weekend.

It’s all about community.  The Fourth Annual Our City Film Festival at The Goethe Institute will screen award-winning films that capture all facets of DC including music culture, community gardening, sports and race relations.  All proceeds from the festival go toward Yachad’s programming.  Yachad (meaning together in Hebrew) works to bring communities together through service.

I encourage everyone to mark their calendar.

SAT & SUN Feb. 12th & 13th

The Goethe Institute / 812 7th St NW


NOTE:   Docs DO go well with beer!  Opening Night Party at R.F.D.’s will showcase musical performances by Christylez Bacon and

other surprise guests.

83rd Acedemy Awards – Doc Features “Shortlisted”

 My favorite of the year, MARWENCOL,  did not make the list.  But, there are lots of other great films that I’ve seen and I’m looking forwarded to watching.  If I had to pick a winner right now – who would I choose? “Exit through the Gift Shop”.

The 15 films that make up the shortlist: 

Client 9: The Rise and Fall of Eliot Spitzer – Dir. Alex Gibney
Enemies of the People – Dir. Rob Lemkin and Thet Sambath
Exit through the Gift Shop – Dir. Banksy
Gasland – Dir. Josh Fox
Genius Within: The Inner Life of Glenn Gould – Dir. Michele Hozer and Peter Raymont
Inside Job – Dir. Charles Ferguson
The Lottery – Dir. Madeleine Sackler
Precious Life – Dir. Shlomi Eldar
Quest for Honor – Dir. Mary Ann Smothers Bruni
Restrepo – Dir. Tim Hetherington and Sebastian Junger
This Way of Life – Dir. Thomas Burstyn
The Tillman Story – Dir.  Amir Bar-Lev
Waiting for ‘Superman’ – Dir. Davis Guggenheim
Waste Land – Dir. Lucy Walker
William Kunstler: Disturbing the Universe – Dir. Emily Kunstler and Sarah Kunstler

The Film Festival continues with Basquiat

FILM: Jean-Michel Basquiat : Radiant Child

FILMMAKER: Tamra Davis

REVIEWER: Becky Beamer

I’ve been on an artist roll – watching documentaries related to artist for the past couple of weeks.  First, it was the Banksy’s Film – Exit through the Gift Shop.  Then I started a film called How to Draw a Bunny (coming soon) and this installment of an artist’s doc is Jean-Michel Basquiat: Radiant CHild .

My day began rainy and behind schedule.  I needed coffee (which is my drink of choice for this movie).  As I walked to the cinema (another day at the Dunedin Film Festival) I had a wishy-washy feeling about another documentary covering the life of another famed artist. After all, I already know a lot about the artist – Basquiat.  He’s awesome.  I respect him and find him down right inspiring.  So – the rainy movie day won out and despite me hesitation I went to the film.

The opening blew me away.  It obviously had an extreme about of detail and precision put into the visuals, the words and the music.  I was immediately impressed – spot on.  The timing was as close to perfect as I’ve seen.  I have nothing bad to say about the opening.

The story is familiar – and other than a couple little facts that Basquiat’s friends interjected throughout the film – there wasn’t too much to learn as a biography.  However, I did learn a lot about Basquiat’s progression of style from friends and colleagues point of view which felt intimate.  I like to learn about his intimate relationships as well.  He is always intense.

The entire movie is complemented by the filmmaker’s home videos.  She was a young film student when she met and started hanging out with Basquiat in LA.  The footage includes B Roll of  Basquiat painting, hanging around, and getting interviewed.  It was beautiful – simple – and honest.  It is THE reason to watch this film.

I left the theater that day very quiet – in contemplation.  I wanted to think and draw.

It’s 5:10 pm.

I need supplies.

The art store closed – only open until 5pm 😦 

5 out of 5 Cheers.

—— b.b

Silverdocs is NEXT WEEK ….. hollllllla

The D.C area’s best documentary Film Festival and arguably one of the most anticipated events of the year invades Silver Spring next week.

Everyone should take advantage of the access to the hippest – hottest and hard to find docs.  Check out the long – the short and the conferences.

And, as if that wasn’t exciting enough, Doc & a Drink will be giving the weekly play by play as official bloggers of the festival.

Bookmark these blogs for the inside scoop:

Inside Scoop of the Week: Many of the evening shows are selling out. Buy your tickets today online!

Highlighted Doc of the Week: MEN WHO SWIM

I’m really looking forward to a doc that features Men Synchronize Swimming.  To learn more check out my blog for SilverDocs.

Cheers and Beers — becky

Errol Morris on Frederick Wiseman

The Silverdocs are coming, the Silverdocs are coming!  The documentary community in D.C. gets a shot of adrenaline every June when one of the world’s best documentary film festivals opens at the AFI Theater in Silver Spring.  Becks and I are counting down till our moment to rub elbows with filmmakers and critique our little hearts out.  A whole film festival dedicated to documentaries, right in our hometown…yes!

This year’s Guggenheim winner is Frederick Wiseman.  This is the big honor of the festival given to an Important Documentary Filmmaker.  It’s the big deal.  And among the other events, one of the major Silverdocs screenings that will be massively difficult to get into will be the special screening honoring his prolific career.

I looked through his list of over thirty films and humbly realized that I haven’t seen a single one of them. How embarrassing.  What will I say to everyone I run into at doc events who will be talking about him?  Quick note on to do list – Must. Watch. Frederick. Wiseman.

And in the meantime, I turn to one of my favorite filmmakers – Errol Morris – who had a recent blog post about the illustrious Frederick Wiseman.  And makes him sound like not just an illustrious filmmaker, but an interesting, surreal, and perhaps irreverant one too.

Frederick Wiseman’s Best Scenes by Errol Morris.

Frederick Wiseman is Found at Zipporah Films.

–Katy J.

Event of the Month – Environmental Film Festival – Living Downstream

FILM:  Living Downstream

FILMMAKER: Chanda Chevannes

REVIEWER: Becky Beamer

Based on the acclaimed book by ecologist and cancer survivor Sandra Steingraber, Ph.D., Living Downstream is an eloquent and cinematic feature-length documentary.  This poetic and character-driven film follows Sandra during one pivotal year as she travels across North America, working to break the silence about cancer and its environmental links.

I am so glad that I took the time to attend D.C’s Environmental Film Festival’s Bonus Day on April 25th.   I saw a film that was very special.  My glowing review starts with the first scene –  The opening scene visuals are thoughtful and the narration is extremely well written.  The open also happens to be part of the trailer so I don’t feel like disclosing the narration (below) will be any kind of spoiler …

There was once a village overlooking a river.
The people who lived there were very kind.
These residents, according to parable, began noticing increasing numbers of drowning people caught in the river’s swift current. And so they went to work devising ever more elaborate technologies to resuscitate them.

So preoccupied were these heroic villagers with rescue and treatment that they never thought to look upstream to see who was pushing the victims in.
This film is a walk up that river.  The river of human cancer.

Finally, Doc&aDrink has experienced an intelligent Host-Main Character.  The documentary was filled with beautifully – well composed landscapes and solid science.  Simplicity & Style of the visuals just works.  The B Roll was clean and deliberate.  My favorite scene was the beluga whales.  The scene included beluga dissection in the name of science.  It was raw and interesting.  I’ve never seen anything like it – effective.

For all those who were wondering – the screening was free  and the location was wonderful.  Please keep an eye out for the festival next year.

It was well attended and the audience included Senator John Kerry.


5 out of 5 Cheers.


The Oscar’s ‘Kanye moment’

Being a doc-obsessed human being I was watching Academy Awards tonight to find out who won in the Documentary categories. (Well, and for the fashion, and the mindless entertainment value).

It was “The Cove” for Best Feature Doc.  No surprise there.  “The Cove” just broke new ground in its stylistic presentation and story structure.  It was an action film documentary and it was so compelling and scary and amazing.

The surprise of the night came during the Best Short Doc. The winner was “Music by Prudence.” Nominees were Director Roger Ross Williams and Producer Elinor Burkett.  The award was announced and gracefully Mr. Williams, the film’s director, begins his speech “I never dreamed, when I got on a plane to Zimbabwe…” and then in a Kanye-style bitch slap, suddenly was CUT OFF by the red-headed producer who hoists herself onstage and swan dives in front of the microphone.  Dude, what?!

You can see the video at Mediaite

Rumors abound, some say that she and Williams had agreed earlier that he would give the speech, some say they raced each other for the stage.  It sure appears there was some kind of personal issue between the two of them. But it might have worked out of the best. Whatever happened there’s probably more press about the Doc Short Film category due to Kanyeish controversy than anyone would have expected. I mean, when else would MTV blog about a doc that isn’t even about MTV?

See who Roger Ross Williams would have thanked if he had had the chance:

More blogs about here: got the behind the scenes story. – Wow.

Lehigh Valley gets some comments from Williams’ sister, who refers to Ms. Burkett as “Ms. Pain-in-the-Ass”

Nowpublic pulls in some of the twitteryammer about it.