Doc/Fest Presents: STEP

Dir: Amanda Lipitz

An uplifting and vibrant film following an inner city Baltimore high school Step team. Under the guidance of their mothers and mentors, the ‘Lethal Ladies’ step team fight against the odds and use their dancing as a way to express themselves, unite their peers and keep chasing their dreams.

DISTURBING THE PEACE

Dir: Stephen Apkon & Andrew Young

Following activist group The Combatants for Peace, Disturbing the Peace tells the story of former enemies from both sides of the Israel-Palestine conflict who have joined together to work towards a resolution and to stand up for what they believe in.

DANCER

Dir: Steven Cantor

Directed by Academy Award-nominated Steve Cantor, Dancer offers a uniquely personal portrait of a most singular man and dancer. Blessed with astonishing power and poise, Sergei Polunin took the dance world by storm and became the Royal Ballet’s youngest ever principal.

This must-be-seen short film event is presented by Doc Heads, in association with Film London, Film Hub London and BFI Film Audience Network. Doc Heads believes that shortform is the future and this new programme premieres films from some of the most exciting filmmakers of the moment.

DANNY SAYS

Dir: Brendan Toller

Danny Says is a documentary on the life and times of Danny Fields. Since 1966, Danny Fields has played a pivotal role in music and “culture” of the late 20th century: working for the Doors, Lou Reed, Nico, Judy Collins and managing groundbreaking artists like the Stooges, the MC5 and the Ramones. 

"This is a tragic and poignant yet also energetic and inspirational portrait of an extremely tough Indian woman." – IDFA (International Documentary Festival Amsterdam)

★★★★★
"Beautifully simple and simply beautiful..." - Tom Huddleston, Time Out

South India’s first female taxi driver.

Doc/Fest Picks: FLOTEL EUROPA

Dir: Vladimir Tomic

Vladimir Tomic boarded the Flotel Europa in Copenhagen in the early 1990s, along with thousands of other refugees from the former Yugoslavia. Through home movie footage Tomic reflects back on his experience in this timely and unusual coming of age film.

DREAMS REWIRED

Dir: Manu Luksch & Martin Reinhart & Thomas Tode

Narrated by Tilda Swinton, Dreams Rewired traces the anxieties and cravings of today’s hyper-connected world back more than a hundred years, when film, television and the telephone were new. 

Down by Law

Dir: George Amponsah

George Amponsah will discuss the ups and downs of making an independently financed, politically charged documentary feature in the UK. This event is part of the Open City Docs Festival.

DARK DAYS

Dir: Marc Singer

For years, a homeless community took root in a train tunnel beneath New York City, braving dangerous conditions and perpetual night. Dark Days explores this surprisingly domestic subterranean world.

DIRTY WARS + Panel Q&A

Dir: Richard Rowley

Something doesn't add up for seasoned reporter Jeremy Scahill, when the scene of a supposed Taliban honour killing in the village of Khatabeh in Afghanistan starts to sound more like a botched (and covered up) US military night raid. 

DREAMING BY NUMBERS

Dir: Anna Bucchetti

Maria and Angela run a local lottery office inherited from their parents. They are well known for their ability to attach numbers to anything, with the help of a revered book called The Grimace. Local murders, police raids, bizarre events, all have their number potential as Naples' citizens try to win their way out of poverty.

DEPORTED

Dir: Katarina Johansson & Ulrika Widmark

Qendresa is thirteen years old and back in Pristina, Kosovo. In 1999 she and her family escaped the war in the Balkans, heading for Sweden where they lived for over four years before being deported. Widmark and Johansson follow Qendresa and her family during their first year back in Kosovo as they struggle to re-adjust to life in a country they no longer know. 

DEATH OF A NATION, THE TIMOR CONSPIRACY

Dir: David Munro & John Pilger

The exposure of another terrible human tragedy to which governments turned a blind eye, East Timor - a tiny country off the northern tip of Australia - is ruled by bloodshed and fear. More than 200,000 people were wiped out by neighbouring Indonesia. Since East Timor's liberation in 1999, this film's contribution has been recognised worldwide.

DON'T LOOK BACK

Dir: D.A.Pennebaker

Both a classic documentary and a vital pop-cultural artifact, D.A. Pennebaker's portrait of Bob Dylan captures the seminal singer-songwriter on the cusp of his transformation from folk prophet to rock trendsetter. Shot during Dylan's 1965 British concert tour, Pennebaker employs an edgy vérité style. His incredible access to the legendarily private star enables us to witness Dylan's shifting moods as he performs, relaxes with his entourage and jousts with fans, press and fellow musicians. It's a measurement of the filmmaker's acuity that the conversations are often as gripping as Dylan's solo performances. A rare and timeless classic.

DETROIT: RUN OF A CITY

Dir: Michael Chanan & George Steinmetz

Motor City was built upon the social concept of 'Fordism'. Through interviews and photographs as well as a remarkable variety of archive footage - Ford plants, mass protests of the Depression years, Diego Rivera painting his famous mural 'Detroit Industry', the struggle for trade union rights, the riots of 1943 and 1967 - this film traces the company's ideological roots and the effect of its ruthless progress on the city.

DIG!

Dir: Ondi Timoner

A hit of the festivals, DIG! was shot over seven years and follows the lead singers of the Dandy Warhols and The Brian Jones Massacre; star crossed friends and bitter rivals. From the moment they met, the two bands quickly bonded over their refusal to conform to the tastes of the recording industry. Yet the bands' choices over how to express their creativity and originality in a profit-driven industry eventually put them at irreconcilable odds. 

DREAMLAND MOTEL

Dir: Lucy Neiland

Lucy Neiland travels to Kansas and stops at a motel called Dreamland, known for Tim McVay's Oklahoma bombing resident. It is also near Fort Riley where soldiers get ready to be shipped to Iraq. Neiland questions residents about what brought them there and what they think the future holds after 9/11.