MoMA Kicks Off Third-Annual Documentary Fortnight
by Ali Gitlow
Thirty-three films from 16 countries will be screened at this year's Documentary Fortnight, held at MoMA Film at the Gramercy Theatre. The festival will run tonight through December 21. The opening-night film will be David Schendel's "Yank Tanks," which chronicles the director's attempt to find the best car mechanic in Cuba.
This year's featured director will be Ulrich Seidl from Austria. Three of his films will be shown in the tribute: "Animal Love" (Tierische Liebe) (1995), "Dog Days" (Hundstage) (2001), and his most recent work, "Jesus, You Know" (Jesus, Du weisst). This prize-winning documentary follows six Catholics who explain their relationships with Christ. Although part of this doc fest, "Dog Days" is actually a fiction film about people living in Viennese suburbs that uses non-professional actors.
Three world-premiere films will screen at the festival. Eric Breitbart's "The Archive of Memory" is an exploration of the ideas of Aby Warburg, a cultural historian. "Baghdad in No Particular Order" documents director Paul Chan's trip to Baghdad with the Iraq Peace Team. In Nicholas Vreeland and Skip Blumberg's "Return to Tibet," a reincarnated monk travels to his monastery with Vreeland (an American Buddhist monk) and Richard Gere (whose photographs are included in the film).
The festival is organized by Sally Berger, Assistant Curator and William Sloan, Librarian, of the Department of Film and Media. Many of the filmmakers will be in attendance to introduce their films.
[For more information, please visit: http://www.moma.org.]