Hot Docs 20
In celebration of Hot Docs’ 20th Anniversary, we’re screening a collection of some of the Festival’s best documentaries from the past 20 years, from audience favourites to award-winning films.
We’ve chosen 19 films to screen in March and April and we’re asking Festival fans and audience members to choose the 20th. The final crowd-sourced film will screen Wednesday, April 24, at 6:30 p.m.
MANUFACTURING CONSENT: NOAM CHOMSKY AND THE MEDIA
D: Mark Achbar, Peter Wintonick | Canada | 1992 | 167 min | G
WINNER – Best Political Documentary, Hot Docs 1994
A film chronicling the radical political ideas of renowned linguist Noam Chomsky and his warning about corporate media’s role in modern propaganda.
SUN, MAR 24, 7:30 PM
Director Mark Achbar will be in attendance for a post-screening Q&A.
HITMAN HART: WRESTLING WITH SHADOWS
D: Paul Jay | Canada, USA | 1998 | 93 min | 14A
WINNER – Best Feature, Hot Docs 1999
The story of Canadian wrestler Bret “The Hitman” Hart, a five-time World Wide Wrestling Federation champion (WWF) and his controversial decision to leave the WWF.
DOCK ELLIS & THE LSD NO-NO
D: James Blagden | USA | 2010 | 5 min | STC
MON, MAR 25, 6:30 PM
D: Jeff Orlowski | USA | 2012 | 80 min | PG
WINNER – People’s Choice Award, Hot Docs 2012
This visually stunning film follows renowned National Geographic photographer James Balog on a harsh Arctic expedition where he captures a multi-year record of the world’s changing glaciers.
TUE, MAR 19, 7:00 PM (Free members screening)
MON, MAR 25, 8:45 PM
A PLACE CALLED CHIAPAS
D: Nettie Wild | Canada | 1998 | 89 min | STC
WINNER – Best Feature, Best Direction, Hot Docs 1999
Fighting for indigenous Mexicans to regain control over their lives and land, the Zapatista Army started sending their message from Chiapas to the world via the internet, resulting in a revolution.
WED, MAR 27, 6:30 PM
Director Nettie Wild will be available for a Skype Q&A following the screening.
KANEHSATAKE: 270 YEARS OF RESISTANCE
D: Alanis Obomsawin | Canada | 1993 | 119 min | PG
WINNER – Outstanding Achievement Award Retrospective, Hot Docs 2009
Kanehsatake provides a powerful perspective on the 1990 “Oka Crisis”, which was sparked when developers tried to build a golf course over Mohawk burial grounds.
FRI, MAR 29, 3:00 PM
D: Ron Mann | Canada | 1999 | 80 min | 14A
Focus On Retrospective, Hot Docs 2009
Is it a gateway drug to social disorder and decay or a catalyst for creativity and deep spiritual insight? Grass is an uproarious attempt to untangle the political and moral panic inspired by marijuana.
FRI, MAR 29, 9:00 PM
THE ENGLISH SURGEON
D: Geoffrey Smith | UK | 2007 | 93 min | STC
WINNER – Best International Feature Award, Hot Docs 2008
The English Surgeon offers a glimpse into the life of English neurosurgeon Henry Marsh, who faces overwhelming professional dilemmas and burdens, while working as a doctor in the Ukraine.
SAT, MAR 30 , 3:00 PM
D: Mark Landsman | USA | 2010 | 83 min | STC
WINNER – Audience Award, Hot Docs 2010
Big afros, funk arrangements, and a super tight stage show put the Kashmere High School Band on the map in the 1970s. Thirty-five years later, the band reunites to honour their mentor.
SUN, MAR 31, 3:30 PM
D: Marshall Curry | USA | 2005 | 83 min | STC
WINNER – Audience Award, Hot Docs 2005
The film follows the political race between African American Councillor Cory Booker and incumbent Newark mayor James Sharpe in 2002. What ensues is a story about poverty, race and democracy in America.
SUN, MAR 31, 8:30 PM
LET IT COME DOWN: THE LIFE OF PAUL BOWLES
D: Jennifer Baichwal | Canada | 1998 | 75 min | PG
Focus On Retrospective, Hot Docs 2008
American iconoclast Paul Bowles was an essential figure in the evolution of 20th century culture. Let It Come Down explores the life of this prominent composer and writer, delving into his sexuality, philosophy and art.
BURROUGHS THOSE DAYS
D: Jennifer Baichwal | Canada | 1998 | 4 min | STC
MON, APR 1, 6:30 PM
Director Jennifer Baichwal will be in attendance for a post-screening Q&A.
D: Lucy Walker, Karen Harley, João Jardim | Brazil, UK | 2010 | 99 min | G
Audience Top 10, Hot Docs 2010
Lucy Walker’s transcendent documentary follows artist Vik Muniz and his work with recyclable material pickers in Brazil’s Jardim Gramacho, the world’s largest landfill site.
TUE, APR 2, 9:30 PM
METALLICA: SOME KIND OF MONSTER
D: Joe Berlinger, Bruce Sinofsky | USA | 2004 | 141 min | 14A
Audience Top 10, Hot Docs 2004
A documentary crew followed Metallica from 2001-2003, as they recorded their album St. Anger, fought bitterly and sought the counsel of their on-call shrink.
FRI, APR 5, 9:15 PM
D: Louie Psihoyos | USA | 2009 | 92 min | PG
WINNER—Audience Award, Hot Docs 2009
A group of activists, led by renowned dolphin trainer Ric O’Barry, infiltrate a cove near Taiji, Japan to expose both a shocking instance of animal abuse and a serious threat to human health.
SAT, APR 6, 3:00 PM
THE LAST JUST MAN
D: Steven Silver | Canada | 2002 | 70 min | 14A
WINNER—Audience Award, Hot Docs 2002
Lieutenant-General Roméo A. Dallaire relates his personal account of one of the 20th century’s worst cases of genocide and explains how politics and timidity conspired to prevent the UN from keeping the peace.
SAT, APR 6, 9:00 PM
D: Kevin McMahon | Canada | 1991 | 89 min | STC
Focus On Retrospective, Hot Docs 2007
The Falls examines the history of mankind’s interactions with Niagara Falls, exploring the connections and disparities between nature and environment, culture and commerce, legend and fact.
SUN, APR 7, 3:00 PM
Director Kevin McMahon will be in attendance for a post-screening Q&A.
D: Sean Fine, Andrea Nix | USA | 2007 | 105 min | PG
WINNER—Audience Award, Hot Docs 2007
Victims of war compete for victory in this hope-filled documentary about three orphans from a displacement camp in Northern Uganda who succeed to the finals of a national dance and music contest.
SUN, APR 7, 8:30 PM
D: Philip Lyall, Nimisha Mukerji | Canada | 2009 | 70 min | STC
Audience Top 10, Hot Docs 2009
They’re funny, smart and gorgeous and they dream of love, fashion and their future. They’re typical young women – except they all need lung transplants to live.
TUE, APR 9 6:30 PM
DEAR ZACHARY: A LETTER TO A SON ABOUT A FATHER
D: Kurt Kuenne | USA | 2008 | 95 min | STC
Audience Top 10, Hot Docs 2008
Filmmaker Kurt Kuenne decides to memorialize his friend Dr. Andrew Bagby, when Bagby’s ex-girlfriend (the prime suspect in Bagby’s murder) announces she is expecting his son Zachary.
MON, APR 22, 9:00 PM
D: Avi Lewis | Canada-Argentina | 2004 | 87 min | 14A
Audience Top 10, Hot Docs 2004
In the wake of Argentina’s dramatic economic collapse in 2001, Latin America’s most prosperous middle class finds itself in a ghost town of abandoned factories and mass unemployment.
TUE, APR 23, 6:30 PM
AUDIENCE CHOICE – MEN OF THE DEEPS
D: John Walker | Canada | 2003 | 52 min | STC
WINNER – Audience Award, Hot Docs 2003
WINNER – Best Performing Arts Program, Best Documentary Photography and Best Sound, Gemini Awards 2004
As the last coal mine in Cape Breton prepares to close the world-famous Nova Scotia coal miner’s choir sings eloquently and passionately about their history and hopes for the future.
WED, APR 24, 6:30 PM
The Hot Docs 20 series is generously sponsored by BlogTO.
Public Supporters: Telefilm Canada and the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund