SELECTED MEDIA & REVIEWS

 

LISTEN

Liz talking about THE BEAUTY ACADEMY OF KABUL on NPR’s Fresh Air

…talking about CERN People on BBC Radio 4 Start the Week (in the august company of Werner Herzog & Geoff Dyer)

 

WATCH

…speaking at LSE’s media think tank, Polis, about “Global stories for global audiences”

…on Al Jazeera's Fabulous Picture Show talking about TEAM QATAR

..talking to HUB CULTURE about making short films on global humanitarian topics.

 

READ

The Guardian Sam Wolleston’s “Last Night’s TV” on TEAM QATAR: “Hats off… to Liz Mermin (again - I'm beginning to feel like her doorman) for making the film… it's absolutely lovely…. It doesn't judge or mock - it simply observes. But there are times when you can almost hear Liz Hats-off-to-you Mermin laughing through her viewfinder. That meeting with the Israelis for example, or zooming in on Alex's snakes-and-ladders socks. A treat.”

Horseracing Channel on HORSES: "Mermin has taken documentary film making to a whole new level with her release of 'Horses'... She has also been able to draw audience members into the film so deeply that they will forget that they are watching animals."

Variety on OFFICE TIGERS: “Mermin’s work is too smart not catch the kinds of East-West ironies she pegged in her previous ‘The Beauty Academy of Kabul”…. Mermin’s highly mobile camera ensures that office life never looks dull, and speaks of her curiosity as a filmmaker about her subject. Subtly clever uses of Bach (arranged and performed by Jon Lord and Nick Fyffe) pepper the soundtrack.”

Los Angeles Times on THE BEAUTY ACADEMY OF KABUL “The most striking moment in Liz Mermin's wonderful documentary "The Beauty Academy of Kabul" occurs in the first few minutes, when the film quickly runs down the devolution of … Kabul, from a place one of the film's subjects describes as "a modern city, where girls went to the university, worked in offices, wore miniskirts and had their hair fixed" through two decades of political instability and war that included three coups, Soviet invasion, Soviet withdrawal, the rise of the Taliban and yet another war. It's the rest of the film, which discovers a surprisingly cheerful and resilient society trying to restore some semblance of quotidian routine, that makes an impact, however. And the Americans are funny.”

View London on HORSES: **** "enjoyable, well made, and thoughtful… by turns informative, gripping and just a little bit odd…. There's also a remarkably odd score that actually sounds like a horse's idea of music."

Salon.com on SHOT IN BOMBAY at SOUTH X SOUTHWEST: “Mermin navigates between the film and the real-life crime story behind it, between Dutt's legal problems and his lengthy troubled-heartthrob career, with remarkable flexibility and sharp, dry humor.”

Liz talks with FILMMAKER magazine about HORSES and her work in general: “Whether it’s an American manager trying to inspire his Indian workers (Office Tigers, screened at STF) or an American volunteer trying to empower Afghani women to run salons (The Beauty Academy of Kabul,) Mermin has a gift for finding the humor in the situation without relying on cheap editing tricks to poke fun at her subjects.”

Austin Chronicle story and interview about THE BEAUTY ACADEMY OF KABUL: “You might be excused for thinking that the women of post-Taliban Kabul had about as much need for a beauty school as a fish for a bicycle. That, in fact, was filmmaker Liz Mermin's (On Hostile Ground) reaction when she read in The New York Times about the upcoming Beauty Without Borders project and wondered whether anyone was making a film about this.”

Realscreen story / interview on HORSES cinema release. “She looked for horses that were busy preparing to race and that had different personalities so they would stand out from each other in the film…. ‘Ardalan stuck his nose in the lens right away, Cuan na Grai would jump every time he saw the camera and seemed fearful of the crew, and Joncol was cool and laid back around the cameras.'”

The Arts Desk on HORSES: "Horses, Liz Mermin's intensely strange documentary, is a fascinating addition to this stable.”

The Independent article about THE BEAUTY ACADEMY OF KABUL: “The resulting chaos and hilarity, and the tears shed by students when they were eventually awarded their graduation certificates, were caught on camera by the documentary-maker Liz Mermin. “

The Documentary Blog on SHOT IN BOMBAY at HOTDOCS: “Director Liz Mermin’s fast-paced, multilayered and captivating doc about shooting a blockbuster gangster movie in Bombay/Mumbia is packed with more drama and action than the movie itself.“

The New York Times reviews OFFICE TIGERS, the series: “In this curious but ultimately intriguing four-part documentary…“

Ireland on Sunday on AMAZING AZERBAIJAN!: “In 2012 Azerbaijan staged the Eurovision Song Contest. The capital city Baku played host to a glamorous spectacle that showed off the profits of a 40-year oil boom proudly around its neck like a gold chain. But behind the veneer of glitz and glamour lies tales of government corruption and abuse of power that have been quietly accepted by Europe in its hunger for oil.”