Stranger than fiction, the power to shock, a provocative call to arms, a lens on the beautiful minutiae of life, a prism through which to explore the world, the story behind the headline: Documentary has the power to reveal so much to us. A diverse slate of first time filmmakers, award-winning UK and international shorts are brought together across four documentary shorts programmes in this year’s festival, as well as in the International and competition programmes.
Dive deep into the lives of those strange and wonderful people all around us in Character Study, explore the complexities and hidden communities of Britain in Small Island, Dive into a Teacup in a diverse programme revealing much about who we are or take a look at personal resistance as radical act in Resistance.
Resistance is also a recurring theme in Omar Majeed’s landmark documentary Taqwacore: The Birth of Muslim Punk which looks at the way class, race, and gender tie in with Muslim resistance in the age of Trump. This screening will be followed by a panel discussion and live music from London’s The Tuts.
The Final Girls excavate some 1970s witchy exploits in The Witching Hour; a fascinating double-bill of rarely seen films showcasing our cultural obsession with witchcraft and the occult. We’ll also be screening another gem from the early 70s, the groundbreaking and influential The Moon and the Sledgehammer which observes the eccentric lives of one family living in the Sussex woods without mains gas or electricity. The screening will be followed by a Q&A with filmmaker Andrew Kötting and photographer Ingrid Pollard.
Doc Heads’ Tristan C. Anderson presents music-video-cum-documentary programme Pop Docs: Soundtracks, that showcases this experimental new genre (in a double bill with Music & Video), and from Radio Atlas comes the international premiere of In The Shadow of the Phantom in translation - the legendary Swedish radio-maker Susanne Björkman’s Prix Italia-winning documentary, telling the story of 25-year-old Aziza, a woman who works in a Stockholm metro station close to a local group of skinhead’s stomping ground.