Following last week’s announcement of the bulk of this year’s programming, the Tribeca Film Festival today revealed the films in its Spotlight, Midnight, Special Events, Special Screenings, and Works In Progress sections, bringing the total of feature documentaries to be presented at this year’s festival to 48, plus two works-in-progress – making up approximately half of the festival’s total lineup. Nonfiction titles unveiled today are noted below:
BAD RAP follows the lives and careers of four Asian-American rappers trying to break into a world that often treats them as outsiders.
THE BANKSY JOB
Ian Roderick Gray and Dylan Harvey
Simultaneously hilarious, wild, and bizarre, THE BANKSY JOB further illuminates the crazy world of street art and the peculiar relationships between the artists – in particular, Banksy and the artist known as AK47.
Timothy Marrinan and Richard Dewey
Illustrated with performance, private videos, and recollections from those who knew him, this detailed and innovative documentary looks at the life of the always provocative artist Chris Burden, whose work consistently challenged ideas about the limits and nature of modern art, from his notorious performances in the 1970s to his later assemblages, installations, kinetic and static sculptures, and scientific models.
Dana Flor and Toby Oppenheimer
Fed up with being abused and harassed on the brutal inner-city streets of Washington DC, a group of gay and trans teens form a gang to fight back. This raw and intimate portrait follows four Check It members as they struggle to find a way out of gang life through an unlikely avenue: fashion.
COMMAND AND CONTROL
A high-stakes documentary thriller based on Eric Schlosser’s 2013 book of the same name explores the “human error” that led to an explosion at the Titan II nuclear site just outside Little Rock, Arkansas towards the end of the Cold War, and probes how mutually assured destruction might actually mean self-annihilation.
ENLIGHTEN US: THE RISE AND FALL OF JAMES ARTHUR RAY
The self-help industry is worth $11 billion dollars a year; it captivates those seeking happiness, release from suffering, and those longing for a path and a leader to follow. James Arthur Ray, for many, was that sort of leader. But when a sweat lodge ceremony goes horribly wrong, we learn from Ray and some of his followers that their spiritual path was fraught with danger and perhaps even greater suffering.
THE LAST LAUGH
When is comedy not funny? Some would argue, when it’s about the Holocaust. Through interviews and performances featuring people on either side of the issue – including Mel Brooks, Sarah Silverman, Louis C.K., Joan Rivers, Chris Rock, and Abe Foxman – as well as a portrait of a resilient survivor, THE LAST LAUGH offers an intelligent and hilarious survey of what is and is not off-limits in comedy, from the Holocaust and beyond.
Roger Ross Williams
The remarkable story of an autistic young man, unable to speak for much of his childhood, who regained his ability to communicate through a life-long commitment to Disney animated movies.
Carlsen is known as the “Mozart of Chess” because, unlike many chess grandmasters, he possesses innate ability, an unbelievable memory, and unrivaled creativity. Memorized moves and calculated probability can only carry a chess player so far; Magnus exploits this weakness in his opponents on his way to becoming the World Chess Champion.
MIDSUMMER IN NEWTOWN
From auditions to opening night, we witness the children of Sandy Hook Elementary find their voice, build their self-confidence, and ultimately shine in a rock-pop version of A MIDSUMMER’S NIGHT DREAM.
MY SCIENTOLOGY MOVIE
With the help of a former high-ranking Scientologist, BBC journalist Louis Theroux sets out to understand the furtive goings-on of the Church, armed with his irreverent humor and biting irony.
A take on the controversial tactic of drone warfare, demanding accountability through the personal accounts – recollections, traumas, and responses – of three American military veterans whose lives have been shaken by the roles they played in this controversial method of attack.
Sometimes girls just wanna have fun… and ball. An eclectic group of women play in an LA recreational basketball league, including a rag-tag group of actresses (including Aubrey Plaza), comedians, musicians, and mothers who brought nationwide attention to the league that could.
Thierry Demaizière and Alban Teurlai
Stunningly gorgeous and delicate in both subject and treatment, RESET depicts renowned choreographer and dancer Benjamin Millepied (also known for choreographing the dance sequences in BLACK SWAN) as he attempts to rejuvenate the Paris Opera Ballet in his new position as director.
An eye-popping montage of archival and news footage and interviews exposes the shadow world of the global arms trade, where corruption, lies, and greed drive covert relationships between politicians, industry executives, military and intelligence officials, and arms dealers. Their aim: to perpetuate war in order to generate more profit, no matter what the human cost.
STRIKE A POSE (pictured)
Ester Gould and Reijer Zwaan
To the fans, they were the unforgettably talented men who supported the career of one of the world’s most beloved and controversial music artists: Madonna. Behind the scenes they were an impressionable group of young dancers whose lives were forever changed by her influence. STRIKE A POSE reunites the men 25 years later, providing the chance to learn about the emotional truth behind the glamorous facade.
A chronicle of the paranoid, downward spiral of millionaire John E DuPont that led to the tragic murder of olympic wrestler David Schultz. Never-before-seen home videos shot during Schultz’s time at Foxcatcher Farms shed light on the disturbing events and serve as a poignant memoir to the legacy of the champion wrestler, husband, and father.
With inside access to the players, decision makers, and supporters who were central to the formation of New York City Football Club and its historic inaugural season, WIN! offers a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at what it takes to build a Major League Soccer team from the ground up, in the country’s most competitive sports market.
I’LL SLEEP WHEN I’M DEAD
An energetic, heart-pumping documentary about one of the most eminent DJs working today: Steve Aoki. In the lead-up to Aoki’s biggest show of his career, the doc examines the driving force behind his passion: Rocky Aoki, daredevil showman, Benihana founder, and Steve’s absent father.
DON’T LOOK DOWN
In the late ’80s and early ’90s, daredevil entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson made an audacious attempt to cross the Atlantic and Pacific in the world’s largest hot air balloon. DON’T LOOK DOWN is a personal revelation; a dramatic tale of survival and drive. Branson recounts his experience with uncanny vividity, and reveals how baiting death forever changed him.
EVERBODY KNOWS… ELIZABETH MURRAY
This tribute to the dynamic artist Elizabeth Murray, an intrinsic figure in New York’s contemporary art landscape from the 1970s until the early 2000s, highlights her struggle to balance personal and family ambition with artistic drive in a male-dominated art world.
MAURIZIO CATTELAN: BE RIGHT BACK
An art world upstart, provocative and elusive artist Maurizio Cattelan made his career on playful and subversive works that send up the artistic establishment, until a retrospective at the Guggenheim in 2011 finally solidified his place in the contemporary art canon. Axelrod’s equally playful profile leaves no stone unturned in trying to figure out: who is Maurizio Cattelan?
SHOT! THE PSYCHO-SPIRITUAL MANTRA OF ROCK
Legendary music photographer Mick Rock is best known for his iconic photographs of David Bowie, Lou Reed, Iggy Pop, Queen, and countless others. In a documentary as rock-n-roll as its subject, Mick Rock guides us through his psychedelic, shambolic first-hand experiences as the visual record-keeper of these myths and legends.
THE SHOW OF SHOWS: 100 YEARS OF VAUDEVILLE, CIRCUSES AND CARNIVALS (pictured)
A world of imagination with a compendium of wonderful unseen archival footage of circus performers, cabaret acts, and fairground attractions. The films are set to a haunting electronic score composed by members of Sigur Rós in collaboration with Hilmar Örn Hilmarsson.
Works In Progress:
GHOST HEADS (pictured)
A documentary exploring the many faces of GHOSTBUSTERS fandom and celebrating 30 years of one of cinema’s most iconic franchises. Featuring interviews with Dan Aykroyd, Ivan Reitman, Sigourney Weaver, and Paul Feig.
UNTITLED BILL NYE DOCUMENTARY
David Alvarado and Jason Sussberg
The filmmakers and the titular Science Guy preview exclusive scenes from their upcoming doc and discuss their process, collaboration, and record-breaking fundraising strategy.
Tribeca/ESPN Sports Film Festival:
THIS MAGIC MOMENT
Erin Leyden and Gentry Kirby
In the mid-1990s, Orlando was the epicenter of excitement in the NBA. The young franchise, led by mega-stars Shaquille O’Neal and Penny Hardaway, beat Michael Jordan and the mighty Bulls en route to the 1995 NBA Finals. They lost to the Rockets that year but it was clear this team from Orlando was a dynasty in the making. But the Magic’s moment on top was never fully realized, a classic “what-could-have-been” story, where success came fast and big and then “poof,” the magic was gone.
Additional already-announced documentaries and narratives are also part of the sports fest sidebar.