Category Archives: Film Festivals

Special Screening: PROPHET’S PREY

prophet's preyComing to LA’s ArcLight Documentary Series tomorrow, Tuesday, July 28: PROPHET’S PREY

Amy Berg’s exploration of a notorious cult leader made its debut at Sundance this year. Other fest screenings have included Sarasota, AFI Docs, Edinburgh, BAMcinemaFest, New Zealand, and Melbourne, among others.

I profiled the doc before Sundance here.

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In Theatres & On VOD: A GAY GIRL IN DAMASCUS: THE AMINA PROFILE

amina profileComing to theatres and to VOD today, Friday, July 24: A GAY GIRL IN DAMASCUS: THE AMINA PROFILE

Sophie Deraspe’s look at the true story behind a controversial Syrian blog debuted at Sundance earlier this year. It has gone on to screen at Hot Docs, Biografilm, Dallas, IFF Boston, and at LGBT fests in San Francisco, Toronto, London, and Miami, among others. Sundance Selects now brings the films to theatres in limited release, while the SundanceNow Doc Club makes it available on VOD.

I previously wrote about the doc before Sundance here.

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Asian American International Film Festival 2015: Documentary Overview

imagesThe 38th annual Asian American International Film Festival brings eighteen new features to New York City between today, Thursday, July 24 and Saturday, August 1, reflecting the diversity of Asian and Asian American filmmaking. Among the eight new nonfiction features presented are the event’s opening night film, Ruby Yang’s MY VOICE, MY LIFE, about a musical staged by under-privileged Hong Kong students. Other documentary entries include:

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From China, Haibin Du’s A YOUNG PATRIOT (pictured), a portrait of the gradual ideological development of a young Chinese man over several years; Adler Yang’s IF THERE IS A REASON TO STUDY, which follows the teenage Taiwanese filmmaker as he documents the experience of alternative schooling on his fellow students; Lauren Knapp’s LIVE FROM UB, which offers a look at Mongolian identity through an independent rock band; Derek Shimoda’s JUNE BRIDE: REDEMPTION OF A YAKUZA, about former Japanese gangsters turned pastors; and DOC NYC 2014 alumnus MISS TIBET: BEAUTY IN EXILE, Norah Shapiro’s exploration of a controversial cultural and beauty pageant for Tibetans in exile.

KillingFieldsAlso represented at the festival is the work of noted Asian American filmmaker Arthur Dong, the subject of a retrospective tribute, which also includes the NYC debut of his latest film, the Cambodian-focused THE KILLING FIELDS OF DR HAING S NGOR (pictured), on the Hollywood actor and Khmer Rouge survivor; and Grace Lee’s OFF THE MENU: ASIAN AMERICA, a travelogue that explores Asian American identity through food.

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Special Screening: (T)ERROR

terror_still_FBI_photocredit_DavidFelixSutcliffeComing to NYC’s Tribeca Film Institute Summer Documentary Series at the Nitehawk Cinema tomorrow, Tuesday, July 21: (T)ERROR

Lyric R Cabral and David Felix Sutcliffe’s behind-the-scenes look at an FBI informant debuted at Sundance, where it won a special jury award. Other screenings have included Nantucket, True/False, Hot Docs, Tribeca, Full Frame, Nashville, and Human Rights Watch, among others.

I profiled the doc before Sundance here.

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On TV: RETURN TO HOMS

return to homsComing to PBS’s POV this coming Monday, July 20: RETURN TO HOMS

Talal Derki’s immersion into the Syrian civil war made its debut at IDFA in 2013. It came stateside at Sundance, where it won the World Cinema Documentary Grand Jury Prize, and went on to screen at New Directors/New Films, Human Rights Watch, ZagrebDox, Thessaloniki Doc, Full Frame, It’s All True, Hot Docs, San Francisco, Krakow, EDoc, Sarajevo, Dokufest Kosovo, Docs DF, and Abu Dhabi, among several others.

My pre-Sundance profile of the doc may be found here.

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Special Screening: THE CHINESE MAYOR

chinese mayorComing to NYC’s Rooftop Films this Saturday, July 18: THE CHINESE MAYOR

Hao Zhou’s behind-the-scenes exploration of an ambitious politician’s plans for his city premiered at Sundance earlier this year, where it won a special award. It has since gone on to screen at True/False, Seattle, Sydney, AFI Docs, RiverRun, IFFBoston, and the upcoming Traverse City fests.

I previously profiled the doc before Sundance here.

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Special Screening: (T)ERROR

terror_still_FBI_photocredit_DavidFelixSutcliffeComing to Los Angeles’ ArcLight Documentary Series tomorrow, Tuesday, July 14: (T)ERROR

Lyric R Cabral and David Felix Sutcliffe’s surprising exploration of the work of an FBI informant made its world premiere earlier this year at Sundance, where it won a special jury award. It has gone on to screen at Nantucket, True/False, Hot Docs, Tribeca, Full Frame, IFF Boston, Nashville, and Human Rights Watch, among others.

My pre-Sundance profile of the film may be found here.

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Filed under Documentary, Film, Film Festivals, Recommendations, Sundance