Maine’s Camden International Film Festival begins its ninth edition tomorrow, Thursday, September 26, and runs through the weekend. In addition to the event’s Points North Documentary Film Forum, connecting emerging filmmakers with industry professionals, thirty new feature documentaries, as well as four retrospective films and a number of shorts, will screen during the festival, primarily curated from the offerings of some of the best festivals taking place earlier in the year, including Sundance, SXSW, Hot Docs, Full Frame, and Tribeca.
Among some of the less familiar or newer titles screening in Camden are: Estephan Wagner’s LAST DREAMS (pictured), about three women facing imminent death; Bo Bartlett, Betsy Eby, and Glenn Holsten’s SEE, which follows two artists exploring the act of seeing; and Daniel Dencik’s MOON RIDER, a portrait of a young man striving to become a championship cycler. Other titles which I’ve not yet had the chance to see include: James N Kienitz Wilkins’ PUBLIC HEARING, a verbatim restaging of a town hall meeting; Jane Gillooly’s SUITCASE OF LOVE AND SHAME, which explores an illicit affair as revealed through found audiotapes; and David Redmon and Ashley Sabin’s NIGHT LABOR, which follows a worker on his factory night shift.
Retrospective screenings at Camden this year include Peter Davis’ 1974 Vietnam film, HEARTS AND MINDS (pictured); Barbara Kopple’s 1977 miners’ strike doc, HARLAN COUNTY, USA; Nathaniel Kahn’s 2003 portrait of his father, MY ARCHITECT: A SON’S JOURNEY; and Hubert Sauper’s 2004 cautionary environmental film, DARWIN’S NIGHTMARE.