Dox in dialogue

With this issue, DOX celebrates both its 100th issue and 20th birthday. At the core of documentary is the meeting: the meeting of worlds, realities, temperaments, aesthetics, individuals. So what better way to...

THE FRAME OF OUR STORIES

“I began to move beyond the simplicity of windows and mirrors and was confronted with the power of the frame.” This is a quote from Alan Berliner, faced with the Turkish uprising; and this “frame”...

Move!

Documentary can reinforce or challenge our perspective on different parts of our world.  In this issue our focus is on artists, documentary filmmakers, and interactive storytellers, who work with redefining,...

Focus on Russia

Russia was one of the main themes at the Movies That Matter Festival this spring. Entitled ‘Russian Spring’, the program dedicated to this complex country combined documentaries, debates and music and it...

Mosaic of Voices
and Looks

From Spanish Documentary Film during the Transition to the Documentary Panorama. In addition to the Official Selections, Documenta Madrid presents in its tenth edition two cycles specifically dedicated to...

A moral vacuum

The Act of Killing, directed by Joshua Oppenheimer, provides a unique and deeply disturbing insight into the ethical deadlock of global capitalism.  Can the monstrous orgy of torture and killing be publicly...

A glittering sea
of darkness

Joshua Openheimer experienced a surprising openness from mass murderers. This was the beginning of The Act of Killing.  In The Act of Killing American documentarist Joshua Oppenheimer lets former...

One film at a time?

Peter Wintonick & Orwa Nyrabia PW: Last month, in Amsterdam working to prep IDFA, I discovered that I have one of the rarest forms of liver cancer. The Dutch medical system is excellent, but I rushed...

THE BOX
IN THE BOX
IN THE BOX

Phie Ambo & Michael Glawogger PA: You always shoot your own films, right? MG: No, never… PA: Oh, I thought you did. So you bring a sound recordist and a photographer. The first time when I saw...

The language of flowers

Rada Sesic & Martichka Bozhilova RS: When I was asked by Vibeke to participate in this interesting talking platform of DOX, I thought, the best partner to discuss the regional documentary scene would be...

A part in the rhythm of somebody’s life

Caspar Sonnen & Hugues Sweeney CS: One of the reasons that I really like to work in interactive documentary and digital storytelling is that it’s a space that didn’t exist before. So people you meet...

Anything between poetry and political propaganda

Ally Derks & Debra Zimmerman DZ: Is it the 50th anniversary of DOX? AD: No, this is the 100th magazine. DZ: Ah, the 100th magazine…. AD: So congratulations to DOX, that is the first thing we...

CINEMA AND THE INVISIBLE

Luciano Barisone & Nicolas Philibert LB: We could start our discussion with the ‘creative documentary’, taking into consideration the two words composing this concept: ‘documentary’, and...

A film like this…

Joshua Oppenheimer & Werner Herzog WH: The Act of Killing is not didactic at all, and I think that is one of the wondrous things about it, and one of its great strengths. The fact that everything we...

Creatures of imagination

CARA MERTES & JOSLYN BARNES CM: I love the question of the subversive quality of documentaries; it made me think about what I was attracted to in terms of nonfiction originally as a form, and it is...

Body and breath

Emma Davie & Niels Pagh NA: You know, to me editing is not that important, it’s telling stories, it’s life that interests me. Editing is just, you know, a method. ED: Of course. NA: But we...

What happens in the mix?

EDITORS CHOICE: DVD in DOX #99 DOX:LAB experiments with hybrid forms of filmmaking, enabling crossovers, not only between directors and cultures, but also between storytelling and languages of film. In...

The Terrorist Next Door

VELVET TERRORISTS Directors Peter Kerekes, Pavol Pekarcík, Ivan Ostrochovský, Slovakia/Czech Republic/Croatia, 2013, 87 min During the 1980s, three individuals decided to fight against the Communist...

THE CASE OF THE PRIVATE DETECTIVE

THE SHADOW Director Line Hatland, Norway, 2013, 45 mins. How do you make a portrait documentary about a retired private detective? You of course let her solve one last case – herself. The Shadow...

From the bottom of the food chain

HILTON! – HERE FOR LIFE Director Virpi Suutari, Finland, 2013, 75 min “Everything I see is grey”, says Mira, one of the residents of Hilton, an apartment complex in East Helsinki that couldn’t be...

Wintry exoticism

PIPELINE Director: Vitaly Mansky, Russia, Czech Republic, Germany, 2013, 121 min. Three crosses in the snow – not Christian ones, different ones. They are the starting point of a journey from the...

India gears up for the war of perceptions

How are documentaries on India produced, received and perceived in India? Filmmaker and critic Meenakshi Shedde, who is India Consultant to the Berlin and Dubai film festivals, sheds some light on the cinema...

The punk child of art:
seeing and being seen

Like a band of filmic pirates, the Sensory Lab plunders what they need from documentary to create something fresh. These are musings arisen from discussions with Lucian Castaing -Taylor and works from the...

Why public TV ?

Kostas Spiropoulos, former general manager of Greek public station ERT, takes a look at the Greek media landscape, where “documentaries” is an unfamiliar term to private TV stations. Without public TV the...

The question of Higgs

How do you transform elusive, scientific research into a fascinating narrative that an audience can engage with on an emotional level? This is the challenge renowned film editor Walter Murch took on in the...

The Russian Pipe Films

The Russian documentary film tradition is acknowledged by documentary professionals all aver the world. Russian docs are often selected for festivals outside Russia. Russian filmmakers such as Victor...

Hot Docs
breaks through

Canada’s doc festival grew into an international force between the founding of  the Toronto Documentary Forum in 2000 and the SARS crisis of 2003. Marc Glassman, then one of the festival’s film...

The Burma Journal

Producer and international documentary ambassador Peter Wintonick recounts his findings as a jury member at the First Human Rights Human Dignity International Film Festival in the dawn of a new Burma.  I...

New Mantra of Storytelling

Stories, audiences and the in-between: Why transmedia is going to make (even more) sense. Among professionals working on transmedia projects, it is common to refer to the contemporary mediascape as a true...

TENGGER
Riding on the volcano

In East Java, at an altitude of 2392 meters and covering the massive Sandsea Caldera, the still-active Bromo Volcano is located. It is still dwarfed by the nearby Semeru Volcano on its southern side, which...

A rising star

Turkish documentary flourishes in an increasingly polarized political climate. Turkey became the center of global attention following the Gezi Park protests that erupted in June. The protests were the...

Balancing form and content

When does the digital form work together with the content? When does it enhance the experience and when does it dilute it? It is debatable whether many of the web documentaries that are labeled...

Somewhere between fiction, non-fiction and art

Tine Fischer, director of CPH:DOX, shares some of her favourite films from the last year of docs. THE ACT OF KILLING Directors Joshua Oppenheimer, Christine Cynn and Anonymous, Denmark, Indonesia,...

The question is not how? But why?

At Łódź Film School the art of filmmaking is both present and past, documentary and fiction.  At the 53rd edition of the Krakow Film Festival held in May this year, Poland’s legendary Łódź Film...

Surrendering to Film

Alan Berliner is a master of creative documentary and experimental film. Özge Calafato met him in the midst of the Turkish uprising, which shocked him and made him challenge his role as a filmmaker. Alan...

How do memories sound?

In the second of a series of articles on sound design in documentaries, Peter Albrechtsen – a sound designer himself – focuses on the visionary sound design of the documentary classic, Tarnation, 2003....

Can you imagine zero?

EDITORS CHOICE: DVD in DOX #98 A few years back, Pamela Cohn met director Heddy Honigmann for a talk about her then newly released documentary, El Olvido. Peruvian-born filmmaker Heddy Honigmann’s long...

Why separate people?

MAMA EUROPA Director Petra Seliskar, Slovenia, 2013, 90 min Mother Europe gave birth to many children. She raised them with love and with care. Among the children were Belgium and the twins called...

Democratization of history

17.000 ISLAND Director Thomas Østbye and Edwin, Norway/Indonesia, 2013 Initially I thought that 17.000 Islands was yet another interactive documentary about a place, portrayed through an archive of short...

Just one size too small

DUMMY JIM Director Matt Hulse, UK, 2013, 90 min. Dummy Jim is a film about James Duthie, a deaf traveller. It is a film with an exuberant visual style, and a creative soundtrack as well. But when does...

Rehabilitating socialism

THE SPIRIT OF ’45 Director Ken Loach, UK, 2013, 98 min. The Spirit of ’45, Ken Loach’s new documentary, looks back at the period that followed the end of the WWII in the UK, when the Labor Party won...

Are victims interesting?

TO THE WOLF Director Aran Hughes and Christina Koutsospyrou, Greece, 2013, 74 min. Las Hurdes: Tierra Sin Pan is a film by Luis Buñuel from 1933. During its half-hour duration, the people living in a...

Exploiting the thin line

Some films invite us to think about documentary performances by definition: don’t  all participants somehow construct their presentation of self? We all know there is a thin line between reality and...

THE WAGNER FILES:
A CROSSMEDIA GESAMTKUNSTWERK?

Would Richard Wagner, had he lived today, have considered crossmedia collaboration as a means of exploring and elaborating on his furious and epic music? Nicoló Gallio visited Visions du Reel, where the...

The Interactive Dance Floor

Digital Domain at SXSW is dedicated solely to new forms of interactive storytelling on film. Suvi Andrea Helminen, an interactive filmmaker herself, looks at the challenges of this relatively new storytelling...

The year of the artist documentary

Hussain Currimbhoy, film programmer for Sheffield Doc/Fest, shares some of his favorite films from the last year of docs. She gestured to the space between her legs and said: “This is where my...

SATA

Still photography project in Havana, Cuba in 2002 “When I wanted to figure out if I was a photographer I bought an old Hasselblad and went to live in Havana for 5 months. What hit me was the evident,...

Being part
of the Circle

Veteran filmmaker Joan Churchill was the recipient of this year’s Outstanding Achievements in Documentary Filmmaking Award at Camerimage, Poland’s prestigious International Film Festival of the Art of...

Defiance Is Present

Özge Calafato looks at some of the most compelling recent documentary works from the Arab World. Three years after the self-immolation of Mohamed Bouazizi in Sidi Bouzid, Tunisia, which sparked the first...

Constructing
‘Losing Sonia’

EDITORS CHOICE: DVD in DOX #101 Losing Sonia is a portrait of a nun, of the church in Ivanovo, and of contemporary Russia, all in one. While most of it is filmed in and around the monastery where Sonia/nun...

A MYTH
that took over the world

MIRAGE MEN Director John Lundberg, UK, 2013, 85 min “Attention projectionists! Adjust the lens so that your picture will be focused properly before the show starts”, booms the voiceover in the opening...

Onscreen confession

Interactive iPad documentary: ALMA – A TALE OF VIOLENCE Director Miguel Dewever-Plana and Isabelle Fougère, France, 2012, 60 mins. Alma is a very poignant web documentary on the confession by a...

Pragmatic people

An interview with Robert Reich from the documentary Inequality for All Robert Reich provides an impassioned lesson about the economy and the widening income gap in Jacob Kornbluth’s Inequality for All....

Documents from the U.S.

We are drawing a line through three films from Sundance this year: politics, economics, and the Occupy Movement. Sundance is now in its 29th year. There’s more corporate sponsorship than in the old days...

THE TRUTH OF HISTORY
alternative archives

New Chinese Documentary challenges the power over what will be known about the past. Its focus is on the repressed history of individuals. History and memory haunt us. There is no way to escape, only to...

INSIDE THE EARS
of an icon

In the first of a series of articles on sound design in documentary, Peter Albrechtsen – a sound designer himself – focuses on the visionary sound design of Zidane, A 21st Century Portrait. The film’s...

One Song and
13 years later

In more ways than one, Forest of the Dancing Spirits stood out from the rest at Hot Docs this year. Director Linda Västrik shared the incredible tale of how the film ended up being 13 years in the...

IT CAN´T BE DONE
The birth of Hot Docs

Marc Glassman, editor of POV, was part of Hot Docs at the beginning 20 years ago. In commemoration of the festivals 20.th anniversary he gives a historical perspective on the first half of the festival’s...

PATRICIO GUZMÀN
A Museum of Amnesia

Guzmán’s work centres around Chile and its political development from Allende’s Chile in the 70s to the Chile of today, and thus very much around issues of memory, history, traces of the past and...