International Documentary Film Festival (IDFA) has just unveiled their lineup of films to be shown at the 2013 edition of the cinematic gathering, which is set to occur from November 20 through December 1. Having received more than 3,000 submissions, the program will consist of a total of 288 titles, with 100 of them having their world premiere. Since starting in 1988, IDFA has become one of the most pivotal documentary film festivals on the international cinematic front.
New program developments in the upcoming installment of the Dutch festival include “Emerging Voices from Southeast Asia,” dedicated to burgeoning filmmakers from the area. Another special themed program for this year’s festival will compare documentaries and feature films based on the same subject, entitled “Based on a True Story,” done in collaboration with EYE Film Institute Netherlands, which has become a regular screening venue for the films throughout the festival.
The 15 films in the feature-length documentary competition have the opportunity to be awarded with the VPRO IDFA Award for Best Feature-Length Documentary, which includes a cash prize of €12, 500. They may also garner a Special Jury Prize. Check out the competition selections, and for a full rundown of the films playing this year, head over to their website.
“Ai Weiwei: The Fake Case” by Andreas Johnsen (Denmark)
Chinese artist Ai Wei Wei wonders, after three months of lonely confinement, what the price of his struggle is.
“Alphabet” by Erwin Wagenhofer (Austria/Germany)
Arm-in-arm in the classroom or painting whatever you want? An indictment of competitive education and a plea for the imagination of the individual.
“Birth of a Tiger” by Sam Benstead (England)
The newly formed nation of South Sudan employs a Serbian coach to get its national football team up and running.
“Displaced Persons” by Åsa Blanck & Johan Palmgren (Sweden)
Forty years ago, Pelle Persson left Sweden and settled in Pakistan. Now he returns to his motherland with the family he started far from home.
“Farewell to Hollywood” by Henry Corra & Regina Nicholson (USA)
A heartwarming yet heartbreaking and controversial ode to 17-year-old Reggie, who is struggling with cancer, her family and the realization of her cinematic dream.
“An Inconsolable Memory” by Aryan Kaganof (South Africa)
A reconstruction of the history of South Africa’s first opera company, Eoan, and an exercise in getting at the truth of what it was to be “a colored.”
“Life Almost Wonderful” by Svetoslav Draganov (Bulgaria/Belgium)
An observational documentary about three brothers and their granny. Despite their hardships, they still believe happiness is just a hope away.
“Ne me quitte pas” by Niels van Koevorden & Sabine Lubbe Bakker (the Netherlands)
A Direct Cinema portrait of the Flemish Bob and the Walloon Marcel, two Belgian friends who share loneliness, humor, alcoholism and suicide plans with great élan.
“Putin’s Games” by Alexander Gentelev (Russia/Austria)
The 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia are breaking all records when it comes to corruption and megalomania. This investigative documentary uncovers the hidden story behind Putin’s Games.
“Return to Homs“ by Talal Derki (Syria/Germany)
A remarkably intimate portrait of the unequal struggle of a group of young revolutionaries in Homs, Syria, against the national army destroying their city.
“Sepideh” by Berit Madsen (Denmark)
A portrait of a courageous young Iranian woman who refuses to conform to expectations and dreams of a future as an astronaut.
“Shado’man” by Boris Gerrets (the Netherlands)
A cinematic portrait of the nocturnal street life of the disabled in Sierra Leone, in which a group of friends reflects on their complex existences.
“Song from the Forest” by Michael Obert (Germany)
American Louis Sarno has been living for 25 years in the jungle, among the pygmies of central Africa. Now he’s taking his pygmy son to see America for the first time.
“Stream of Love“ by Agnes Sós (Hungary)
Love and desire still fill the hearts and thoughts of elderly villagers in Transylvania, Hungary. Their spirits are young, despite their years.
“The Wild Years” by Ventura Durall (Spain)
Living without money or adult involvement, three street children struggle to survive in the capital of Ethiopia.