Documentary Fortnight 2021 Overview

Festival:
The 20th Documentary Fortnight

Dates:
March 18-April 5

About:
The Museum of Modern Art’s annual exploration of international nonfiction and hybrid work presents nearly 20 features, in addition to short films and special retrospectives.

Among the offerings:

The Calm after the Storm
Director: Mercedes Gaviria
To make her debut feature, the filmmaker joins her father on his first film shoot in a decade, interweaving footage from the unlikely collaboration with old home videos and evocative field recordings in a pointed appraisal of cinematic heritage and gender relations, both on set and at home.

DON’T RUSH
Director: Elise Florenty, Marcel Türkowsky
A heavy summer night on the island of Lemnos: a pirate radio plays rebetiko, filling a smoky room with mournful music from a century ago, born then of forced displacement from Asia Minor and working-class counterculture in Greek cities. 

Êxtase
Director: Moara Passoni
A transmutation of a young Brazilian woman’s experience of anorexia into images and thoughts of almost ecstatic beauty.

The Insomnia of a Serial Dreamer
Director: Mohamed Soueid
In search of a good night’s sleep, video pioneer, cinema auteur, and television producer Mohamed Soueid collected stories from those around him on and off for 15 years, resulting in a roaming and quietly disarming work.

On a Clear Day You Can See the Revolution from Here
Director: Emma Charles, Ben Evans James
An expansive journey through the Kazakh steppe excavates layers of myth, geology, and technology to reveal the shifting fault lines between a government, its people, and their land.

Shared Resources
Director: Jordan Lord
Filming their parents over five years as they go through a Chapter 13 bankruptcy, the filmmaker embeds their story of trial and resilience negotiating a system predicated on self-reliance in a broader reflection on forms of debt and interdependence in family life and art-making. 

Terra Femme
Director: Courtney Stephens
Composed entirely of archival material and home movies from the 1920s to the 1940s, Terra Femme explores the emancipatory power women found in newly available personal cameras, and the association this self-expression had with gender roles, the rise of a leisured, white middle class, and imperialism. 

The Witches of the Orient
Director: Julien Faraut
United by their jobs in a textile factory, a Japanese women’s volleyball team chases absolute perfection—and finds international superstardom—representing postwar Japan on the 1964 Olympic stage.

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

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