IDFA 2020 Overview, Part Two

Festival:
The 33rd IDFA

Dates:
November 18-December 6

About:
Yesterday’s post covered the Dutch event’s competitive sections, while today’s looks at non-competitive programming strands.

Among the offerings:

Masters:

THE FILMMAKER’S HOUSE
Director: Marc Isaacs
The filmmaker blends fact and fiction to explore themes of hospitality and authorship by filming in his own home.

ZIYARA
Director: Simone Bitton
A personal pilgrimage through Morocco, once home to 300,000 Jews.

Best of Fests:

THE ART OF LIVING IN DANGER
Director: Mina Keshavarz
Iranian women have lived in fear for decades, with no legal protection against domestic violence, prompting a group of activists to fight for change.

HEAVEN BENEATH MY FEET
Director: Sandra Madi
Heartbreaking stories from Lebanon, where divorced mothers have to fight for years just to see their children.

HEY! TEACHERS!
Director: Yulia Vishnevets
The idealistic approach of two young teachers is put to the test in a provincial Russian town.

JUNGLE
Director: Louise Mootz
A group of very vocal women with diverse backgrounds dance, laugh, fuck, and dither their way through life in a Parisian suburb.

LONG, LIVE, LOVE
Director: Sine Skibsholt
Rosemarie, age 15, already survived cancer twice and wants to get on with life, but her young mother hasn’t yet come to terms with her fear of losing her child.

LOST KIDS ON THE BEACH
Director: Alina Manolache
The director embarks on a personal quest in Romania to portray the generation born shortly after the fall of the country’s dictator Ceausescu – and the beginning of a new, post-communist era.

MOTH
Director: Roxanne Gaucherand
Two girls in a village in southeastern France that is preparing for the annual, disruptive invasion of the box tree moth.

NOTES FROM THE UNDERWORLD
Director: Tizza Covi, Rainer Frimmel
What starts as a portrait of the popular Austrian singer Kurt Girk develops into a unique and powerful document of an era: the Austrian underworld in the 1960s.

OECONOMIA
Director: Carmen Losmann
A multilayered quest to fathom the workings of the capitalist system.

PLEASE HOLD THE LINE
Director: Pavel Cuzuioc
A beautifully filmed allegory about communication and connection, told from the perspective of telecom engineers and their customers. 

PUNTA SACRA
Director: Francesca Mazzoleni
A captivating portrait of the small village of Ostia and its illegal inhabitants.

Frontlight:

ARICA
Director: Lars Edman, William Johansson Kalén
After the Swedish company Boliden dumped toxic waste in the Chilean desert town of Arica in 1984, thousands of local residents fell ill.

CLASS
Director: Ester Gould, Sarah Sylbing
This series on the fight for equal opportunities in Dutch education follows pupils in Amsterdam in their last year of primary school.

DEAR ELNAZ
Director: Mania Akbari
Elnaz died in an air disaster on January 8, 2020, when the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps of Iran shot down the passenger plane she was in. Her husband gives full vent to his grief and rage in this fittingly unpolished film.

SHE HAD A DREAM
Director: Raja Amari
Charismatic, young, Black, and working-class, Ghofrane Binous became politically active during the Tunisian national elections. 

WE ARE THE THOUSAND
Director: Anita Rivaroli
An uplifting, inspiring, and emotional music documentary about a seemingly impossible plan to record a song by the Foo Fighters with a thousand musicians.

LOST COURSE
Director: Jill Li
People living in the coastal village of Wukan, South China, spend years combating corruption among local administrators.

Luminous:

THE ARK
Director: Dan Wei
With the COVID-19 pandemic unfolding across the globe, an elderly woman fights for her life in a hospital in China, her family refusing to budge from her side, no matter what.

BETWEEN FIRE AND WATER
Director: Viviana Gómez Echeverry
Camilo was adopted by a Quillasinga couple in southwest Colombia, becoming the only Black member of this indigenous community.

BOSCO
Director: Alicia Cano Menoni
Over 13 years, the director filmed both her elderly grandfather in Uruguay and his distant relatives in the tiny Italian village of Bosco.

DORMANT
Director: Natalia Labaké
The granddaughter of Argentinian lawyer and politician Juan Labaké makes subtle use of old and new home videos to shed light on the subordinate role of women in politics and society, against the backdrop of the politician’s rise in the 1990s.

FAR FROM YOU I GREW
Director: Marie Dumora
Thirteen-year-old Nicolas, placed in a children’s home as a toddler, has to find his way to adulthood on his own, without the help of parents, but is supported by the Odyssey and his best friend Saef.

OPTION ZERO
Director: Marcel Beltrán
A lesser known Cuban escape route to the United States runs via the rainforests of Guyana and Colombia to Central America.

SOLDIER’S WOMAN
Director: Patricia Wiesse Risso
Peruvian women, who were raped by army soldiers in the 1980s during the internal war against the terrorist group Sendero Luminoso, take the perpetrators to court to demand justice and regain their dignity.

Paradocs:

GEOGRAPHIES OF FREEDOM
Director: Miguel Peres dos Santos
A compilation of archival footage and images of the current landscape on Curaçao lays bare the painful historical relationship between the oil refineries of Dutch multinational Shell and the inhabitants of the Netherlands Antilles.

THE LANDING
Director: Akram Zaatari
First, there was desert; then came the houses for a Bedouin community; but now the sand has returned: it seeps through the ruins as three men pluck and scrape to elicit experimental music from this site that sparks the imagination.

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

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