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306 Hollywood: “A magical-realist journey in search of what life remains in the objects we leave behind”

306 Hollywood movie photo
Courtesy of El Tigre Productions

When I feature time capsule houses, I sometimes note how they are archaeology — they show and help us to understand how people of a certain time and certain place lived. In this documentary — “306 Hollywood” — siblings Elan and Jonathan Bogarín interviewed their grandmother Annette Ontell annually for 10 years. When she is gone, they then examined and analyzed everything in her house, like archaeologists. And then, as filmmakers, they put it all together… in a tender, magical way. The documentary airs on March 18 on POV on PBS, already is available on itunes, and will be streaming on Amazon Prime soon. Thank you, Gloria, for this wonderful tip! 

“A loving archaeological expedition”

Courtesy of El Tigre Productions

Gloria wrote:

Was just listening to NPR and they were discussing a new documentary called “306 Hollywood.” A pair of siblings went through the house their grandmother lived in for over 70 years and treated it like a loving archaeological expedition. Furniture, dresses, foundation garments and wait till you see the green and chartreuse dinner set! … It will be on POV on PBS March 18, 9 pm. I hope you get a chance to see it. Thanks for this wonderful site.  Gloria

“Transforming the dusty fragments of an unassuming life into an epic metaphor for the nature of memory, time, and history”

Elan and Jonathan Bogarín, photo courtesy of El Tigre Productions

From 306 Hollywood’s website:

When siblings Elan and Jonathan Bogarín undertake an archaeological excavation of their late grandmother’s house, they embark on a magical-realist journey in search of what life remains in the objects we leave behind. 306 HOLLYWOOD transforms the dusty fragments of an unassuming life into an epic metaphor for the nature of memory, time, and history.

With boundless creativity and an irrepressible bouncing energy, 306 HOLLYWOOD memorializes and honors the life of the filmmakers’ grandmother Annette Ontell. Housewife, fashion designer, and beloved family member, Ontell lived seven decades in the same house—306 Hollywood Avenue in Hillside, New Jersey. Ultimately a profound reflection on how we examine and deal with the past, the film can also be viewed as a quirky instruction manual on how to live in the present….

Yes, this is where I will be March 18, 9 p.m. (also streaming Amazon Prime mid-2019). I am also… mesmerized… by this story and its exploration. More to come.

  1. Thank you so much for posting this! Watch this tonight and it was absolutely magical.maria says:

    Thank you so much for posting this!

    Watch this tonight and it was absolutely magical.

  2. carolyn says:

    I can not recommend this show after enduring it. I watch the 3 PBS stations here so I know somewhat what to expect but this was not a tribute to their grandma or did it shed much light on the artifacts from the 70 yrs in her home. Humiliating Grandma isn’t my cup of tea. Attribute it to my Midwest upbringing.

  3. Kathy says:

    I saw this on POV on PBS, and it was one of the most powerful films I have seen about how intensely the essence of a loved one remains behind after death, and how hard it is to give up that presence. I felt that way after my mother died. They kept that house for five years and I hope the new owners love it as much as their grandma did.

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