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Parallel Lines 2005

Highly Recommended

Distributed by Documentary Educational Resources, 101 Morse Street, Watertown, MA 02472; 617-926-0491
Produced by Nina Davenport
Directed by Nina Davenport
VHS, color, 98 min.

Sr. High - Adult
American Studies, Sociology, Urban Studies

Date Entered: 03/16/2006

Reviewed by LaRoi Lawton, Library & Learning Resources Department, Bronx Community College of the City University of New York

Personal documentaries are films made by people about their own lives or experiences or even about a subject matter of personal, national or international concerns. These types of docu-dramas have become more prevalent than ever, and if the programming at some of the most recent documentary festivals around the world is any indication, this trend is picking up at a fast pace.

In her latest documentary, Parallel Lines, Nina Davenport drives from California to New York in the autumn of 2001. The events of 9/11 quickly recede into the background, as what is soon to become a documentary becomes a gateway into the inner lives of Americans. The interviews are straightforward, honest and at times, gut wrenching. Nina does not interview victims, and she does not speculate whether a different configuration of struts and concrete, or indeed a different president, might have ensured that the World Trade Center Towers would not coming crashing down. Nina is a smart interviewer, and there are many fantastic moments. More importantly, the film communicates the vastness of America and the great number of eccentrics to be found here. “The title of the film refers to the lines in the road, the personal story lines that paralleled the nation's story, and the twin towers themselves; in this poignant and personal documentary, those lines reveal heartache, humor, surprise, and above all, the drive to endure.”


  • Woodstock Film Festival Audience Award, 2004
  • Vermont International Film Festival Best War and Peace Film, 2004
  • Woods Hole Film Festival “Best of Festival” Award, 2004