DOK Leipzig 2020 Overview

Festival:
The 63rd DOK Leipzig

Dates:
October 26-November 1

About:
This notable German nonfiction event has slimmed down for its hybrid edition this year, presenting just shy of 40 new documentary features.

Among the offerings:
German Competition:

ATOMKRAFT FOREVER
Carsten Rau
A visually stunning and at the same time sober reckoning of the zero sum game between climate change and nuclear disaster: no dramatization at all and yet deeply disturbing.

WIR WOLLTEN ALLE FIESEN KILLEN
Bettina Ellerkamp, Jörg Heitmann
A real-life satire about the incredible acquisition and impossible sale of a bunker mountain – a mixture of serious documentary and bone-dry humorous science fiction.

THE GUARDIAN
Martina Priessner
A Syrian Orthodox nun lives in an abandoned estate in south-eastern Turkey. Despite hostilities from the Muslim neighbourhood: she won’t be driven out.

80.000 SCHNITZEL 
Hannah Schweier
Monika has a new dream: She fights tirelessly to preserve her grandmother’s ailing inn and farm. A family chronicle and a film about life goals.

International Competition:

GIRLS/MUSEUM
Shelly Silver
Girls in an exhibition: visitors aged between seven and nineteen contemplate individual works in the Leipzig Museum of Fine Arts and offer spontaneous interpretations.

THE ANNOTATED FIELD GUIDE OF ULYSSES S GRANT
Jim Finn
The American Civil War dissected: a distinctive 16mm film and animated war board games reveal a divided nation full of rebels.

CHILDREN
Ada Ushpiz
Why do Palestinian minors take part in the Intifada against Israel? Ada Ushpiz follows children and their families and witnesses terrible pressure.

THEIR ALGERIA
Lina Soualem
A gentle investigation of the biographical and emotional condition of the filmmaker’s grandparents, who emigrated from Algeria to France.

CONSIDERING THE ENDS
Elsa Maury
Shepherdess Nathalie learns what it means to kill with one’s own hands. Her process of development turns out to be a holistic learning experience: about responsibility, care, and knives.

JOY
Daria Slyusarenko
Bliss and misery are close together in the travelling circus. Full of wit and tragedy, ambitious clowns, painful relationships, and the rough life behind the scenes.

Golden Section/Audience Award:

THE BLUNDER OF LOVE
Rocco Di Mento
Cinematic genealogy: A grandson sets out to document his grandparents’ boundless love but upon closer inspection of the myth is unable to overlook the family rifts.

A BLACK JESUS
Luca Lucchesi
In the small Sicilian town of Siculiana, people place their fate in the hands of a black Christ, but do not totally trust the African refugees living nearby.

A LONELY CITY
Nicola Graef
There’s no better place for a lonely life than Berlin. A portrait of a city with its diverse inhabitants, which strikes the right notes far away from any hullabaloo.

FORGOTTEN LANDS
Amélie Cabocel
This moving portrait of the filmmaker’s grandmother is also an intelligent reflection of the unique ability of photography to record and pass on echoes of a life lived.

A NEW SHIFT
Jindřich Andrš
Tomáš worked as a miner for 21 years, until the mine closed down. Full of hope, he retrains as a coder. But the way out of the crisis is harder than expected.

Camera Lucida:

LAMENTATIONS OF JUDAS
Boris Gerrets
In an abandoned desert town, a group of old men live in poverty. Once Angolan mercenaries of the Apartheid regime, they now become actors in the story of Judas Iscariot.

AVALON
Thunska Pansittivorakul 
Looking for the truth in the past, the filmmaker confronts the explicitly sexual film footage once produced by his twenty years younger lover.

EVERYTHING THAT IS FORGOTTEN IN AN INSTANT
Richard Shpuntoff
Between three generations who grew up with three different languages, between New York and Buenos Aires, this intelligent and multi-layered film essay goes in search of identity.

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

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