New York Film Festival 2018: Documentary Overview

The 56th New York Film Festival

September 28-October 14

The storied Film Society of Lincoln Center event presents approximately 20 docs among its more than 50 new features, a slight drop compared to last year.


Two of the fest’s 30 offerings in its Main Slate go to nonfiction or essay titles – Frederick Wiseman’s MONROVIA, INDIANA, a portrait of a small town; and Jean-Luc Godard’s THE IMAGE BOOK, an essay film examining the modern Arab world – while the Special Events section includes Morgan Neville’s THEY’LL LOVE ME WHEN I’M DEAD, on the making of Orson Welles’ THE OTHER SIDE OF THE WIND; and the Retrospective features three docs on cinema, including Pamela B. Green’s BE NATURAL: THE UNTOLD STORY OF ALICE GUY-BLACHÉ, on the pioneering but little-remembered female director.


A dozen nonfiction titles screen in the fest’s Spotlight on Documentaries, including the world premieres of Mark Bozek’s THE TIMES OF BILL CUNNINGHAM, on the late, beloved New York Times street photographer; and Tom Surgal’s FIRE MUSIC, a tribute to free jazz. Among the many notable remaining selections are titles that made their debuts at other prestigious Fall festivals, including Errol Morris’ AMERICAN DHARMA, on Steve Bannon; Charles Ferguson’s WATERGATE, on Nixon’s downfall; and James Longley’s ANGELS ARE MADE OF LIGHT, a longitudinal look at the youth of Kabul.

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

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