Tribeca 2016: Documentary Overview

tribeca 2016The 15th annual Tribeca Film Festival begins this Wednesday, April 13, kicking off with an opening night screening of Andrew Rossi’s FIRST MONDAY IN MAY, a behind-the-scenes look at the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Gala. By the time the event wraps on Sunday, April 24, the festival will have showcased nearly 60 additional nonfiction features, including fellow Gala title THE BOMB, Kevin Ford, Smriti Keshari, and Eric Schlosser’s immersive 360 degree meditation on nuclear weapons, and other highlights noted below:

Contemporary_Color_web_2Among the most anticipated each year are the dozen selections in the Documentary Competition, which includes: Bill Ross and Turner Ross’ CONTEMPORARY COLOR (pictured), which captures David Byrne’s celebration of the color guard; Jenny Gage’s ALL THIS PANIC, a startling multi-year portrait of female adolescence; Cecilia Aldarondo’s MEMORIES OF A PENITENT HEART, an investigation of the filmmaker’s uncle’s death in the early years of the AIDS epidemic; Craig Atkinson’s DO NOT RESIST, on the disturbing trend of police militarization; Kelly Duane de la Vega and Katie Galloway’s THE RETURN, which addresses the difficulties faced by newly freed prisoners; Andreas Johnsen’s BUGS, an exploration of the potential for insects to become part of our sustainable diets; and Joseph Martin and Sam Blair’s KEEP QUIET, which traces the strange story of a rabid anti-Semite turned Orthodox Jew.

Night-School_web_1The festival’s innovation-focused Viewpoints also includes nearly a dozen works of nonfiction, including: Andrew Cohn’s NIGHT SCHOOL (pictured), which follows three adults as they seek their high school diplomas; Ellen Martinez and Steph Ching’s AFTER SPRING, an exploration of one of the world’s largest refugee camps; Vanessa Gould’s OBIT, a behind-the-scenes look at The New York Times‘ obituary department; Kristi Jacobson’s SOLITARY, a candid profile of prisoner’s facing solitary confinement; Deborah S Esquenazi’s SOUTHWEST OF SALEM: THE STORY OF THE SAN ANTONIO FOUR, about four innocent lesbians who fell victim to a witch hunt that put them behind bars for decades; Tracy Droz Tragos’ ABORTION: STORIES WOMEN TELL, which profiles individuals with personal experiences related to the ever-contentious issue.

Reagan-Gun-Shadow-WorldAnother 18 docs are included in Spotlight, such as: Johan Grimonprez’s SHADOW WORLD (pictured), an exposé of the global arms trade and its impact on world governments; Robert Kenner’s COMMAND AND CONTROL, about a 1980 incident that exposed the risks of nuclear proliferation; Dana Flor and Toby Oppenheimer’s CHECK IT, about a group of victimized gay and trans youth who fight back by forming a gang; Lloyd Kramer’s MIDSUMMER IN NEWTOWN, about an effort to heal a community’s trauma through art; Thierry Demaizière and Alban Teurlai’s RESET, an inside look at the Paris Opera Ballet through the eyes of its new director; Jenny Carchman’s ENLIGHTEN US: THE RISE AND FALL OF JAMES ARTHUR RAY, a portrait of the motivational speaker convicted for the death of three of his clients; John Dower’s MY SCIENTOLOGY MOVIE, which follows a filmmaker’s attempts to investigate the controversial religion; Ferne Pearlstein’s THE LAST LAUGH, an investigation of taboo topics in comedy; and Brent Hodge’s PISTOL SHRIMPS, about Los Angeles’ fledgling amateur women’s basketball teams.

Shot_web_1Additional nonfiction programming appears in the Special Screenings sidebar, which includes Daniel Gordon’s chronicle of Sir Richard Branson’s hot air balloon voyages, DON’T LOOK DOWN, and Barnaby Clay’s portrait of rock photographer Mick Rock, SHOT! THE PSYCHO-SPIRITUAL MANTRA OF ROCK (pictured); and in Tribeca Talks, such as Adam Nimoy’s reflection on his actor father, FOR THE LOVE OF SPOCK, and Lydia Tenaglia’s look at an influential yet largely forgotten chef, JEREMIAH TOWER: THE LAST MAGNIFICENT.

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Filed under Documentary, Film, Film Festivals, Overviews, Recommendations

One response to “Tribeca 2016: Documentary Overview

  1. Pingback: Screenings week of 4/22/16 – nycdocscreen

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