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5 items from 2014

Montreal doc festival unveils lineup

4 November 2014 6:28 AM, PST | ScreenDaily | See recent ScreenDaily news »

The 17th Montreal International Documentary Festival runs Nov 12-23 and opens with the world premiere of Kim Nguyen’s Le Nez [pictured].

The full programme for the 17th annual Montreal International Documentary Festival (Ridm) has been unveiled.

This year’s festival will feature 141 films from 44 countries, including 21 world premieres, 19 North American premieres and 21 Canadian premieres.

The festival opens with the world premiere of Quebec filmmaker Kim Nguyen’s Le Nez, a journey through the mysterious world of the sense of smell. Nguyen’s War Witch was nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the Oscars in 2013.

Nicolas Wadimoff’s Spartiates also receives its world premiere as the festival’s closing film. The Swiss filmmaker travels to the outskirts of Marseille, where a mixed martial arts instructor is struggling to keep his school open.

Eleven awards will be presented to the winning films in the Ridm’s four competitive sections: Official Competition, Canadian Feature »

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Best of Fest – Docs: Amy Berg’s An Open Secret Hits Doc NYC, Seung-Jun Yi’s Wind on the Moon Joins Idfa (October ’14)

28 October 2014 12:15 PM, PDT | ioncinema | See recent ioncinema news »

The falling leaves are a sure sign it’s now the beginning of awards season, with Oscar short lists starting to leak out, Ida Awards prepping their program and the Emmy’s already handing out golden statues. Also, on the festival circuit this month we have a whole host of big lineup announcements coming from a hefty set of acronym loving non-fiction fests the world over, from Cph:dox and Doc NYC, to Idfa and Ridm. Best of Fests Docs is a monthly snapshot of the films and filmmakers that are the make-up of the docu film festival and awards circuit. Check out the full rundown below:

Cph:dox - Denmark – November 6th-16th

The festival, also known as Copenhagen International Documentary Festival , has announced its 2014 lineup, which was guest curated this year by Citizenfour director Laura Poitras. Over 200 films (with the likes of Robert Greene’s Actress, Joshua Oppenheimer’s The Look of Silence, »

- Jordan M. Smith

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Oscars: Canada Taps ‘Mommy’ For Foreign-Language Entry

19 September 2014 10:57 AM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

Montreal filmmaker Xavier Dolan’s “Mommy” will represent Canada in the nominee race for the best foreign-language film Oscar, it was announced today by Telefilm Canada.

The film, which shared the Special Jury Prize at Cannes earlier this year, follows the relationship between a troubled teenager (Antoine-Olivier Pilon) and his mother (Anne Dorval), a widow, who struggles to cope with her son’s volotile mood swings, and a shy neighbor who takes an interest in them.

“When you are aiming high you take risks to achieve things,” commented a thrilled Dolan at a media conference held in Montreal. “If we can make it all the way to the Oscars, it’s my honor and duty to give everything and all my energy to this campaign.”

This summer Roadside Attractions acquired U.S. rights, and at the time said it would release the film in 2015.

The 25-year-old Dolan’s previous features include “I Killed My Mother, »

- Jennie Punter

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Film Review: ‘Hope’

3 June 2014 4:32 PM, PDT | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

There exists a rich anthropological patchwork of survival stories from sub-Saharan African migrants who have traversed desert and sea in pursuit of a better life in Europe, yet it’s one that has remained largely untapped on film. That’d be reason enough to welcome “Hope” to the extreme road-movie subgenre populated by the likes of “In This World” and “The Golden Dream,” even if the film weren’t as commendably tough and vividly realized as it is. Chronicling the pragmatic but finally tender alliance between a young Nigerian woman and a Cameroonian man battling brutal odds to reach the shores of Spain, this confident narrative debut for French docu helmer Boris Lojkine is perhaps too solemnly muted (and its title too ironic) for extensive non-Francophone distribution. It will, however, be a handsome addition to many a socially conscious festival lineup. 

Though there’s still a disappointing dearth of African-focused »

- Guy Lodge

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Sundance Film Review: ‘White Shadow’

1 February 2014 8:45 AM, PST | Variety - Film News | See recent Variety - Film News news »

The waking nightmare of the African albino muti trade — whereby albinos are hunted for their supposedly restorative body parts — is a tricky subject to film without leaning too far in the directions of exploitation or exoticism, but artist-turned-filmmaker Noaz Deshe’s staggering debut feature, “White Shadow,” strikes the necessary balance with vision to burn. Veering wildly between earthy verite and near-ecstatic surrealism, this Tanzanian-set tale of a resourceful albino adolescent learning to survive in a community brutally geared against his kind is stylistically reckless in the best possible way — a quasi-horror film that evokes a world physically and spiritually out of balance. Already a Critics’ Week winner at Venice, this overlong but arresting pic should make further waves on the fest circuit, aided by the presence of Ryan Gosling as executive producer; gutsy distribs only need apply.

With its focus on Central African youth in peril, interludes of dreamy stylization and non-native directorial perspective, »

- Guy Lodge

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2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011 | 2010 | 2009 | 2008

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