Wednesday, November 3 - Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Today: Oscar-winner Kevin Brownlow in person with CECIL B. DEMILLE: AMERICAN EPIC, plus added screening of award winner TO BE HEARD and filmmakers in person for MOTHER OF ROCK, FIVE WEDDINGS AND A FELONY, PUPPET and more!

The first annual DOC NYC, New York’s premiere documentary festival, is here, with a slate of over 40 films and events taking place at IFC Center and New York University venues Nov 3-9, 2010. Select titles and events  are below; more information about the festival, festival passes and tickets are at .


  • Cave of Forgotten Dreams (Werner Herzog) – Werner Herzog gains exclusive access to film inside the Chauvet caves of southern France, capturing the oldest known pictorial creations of humankind in their astonishing natural setting. He puts 3-D technology to a profound use, taking us back in time over 30,000 years.
  • Tabloid (Errol Morris) The director of The Thin Blue Line and the Academy Award®-winning The Fog of War tells the story of a former Miss Wyoming whose quest for one true love led her across the globe and onto the pages of tabloid newspapers.


VIEWFINDERS celebrates both established and emerging filmmakers who bring a distinct directorial voice to their work. The selection takes us to Afghanistan in “Armadillo,” Vietnam in “The Disappearance of McKinley Nolan,” rural India in “Pink Saris,” Japan in “ANPO: Art x War,” ocean voyages in “Discoveries of a Marionette,” and upstate New York in “Windfall.” We follow a teenage girl facing high school graduation in “Kati with an I” and a young man facing life choices in “Five Weddings and a Felony.”

These eight films range in style from observational to essayistic; and in mood from suspenseful to humorous for a spectrum of contemporary documentary trends.

The jury is tasked to honor one film that appeals most strongly to their sensibilities as an outstanding achievement in both form and content. We hope this selection will surprise, inspire and spark debate.

  • ANPO: Art x War (Linda Hoaglund) U.S. Premiere – Drawing upon rich archival sources of film and art, this film documents resistance to US military bases in Japan.
  • Armadillo (Janus Metz) U.S. Premiere – Winner of Cannes Critics Week, Armadillo is a harrowing portrayal of the current conflict in Afghanistan. The film follows a contingent of Danish troops into the chaos of combat in a way that stirs debate over the rules of engagement.
  • The Disappearance of McKinley Nolan (Henry Corra) During the Vietnam war, McKinley Nolan mysteriously disappeared – rumored to be either a traitor, captive or American operative. Now his family goes searching for answers.
  • Discoveries of a Marionette (Bjarte Mørner Tveit ) U.S. Premiere – Norwegian director Bjarte Mørner Tveit draws upon a rich personal archive of 8 mm film left by his grandfather Alf, who was secretive about his experiences as a globe-trotting sailor.
  • Five Weddings and a Felony (Josh Freed) World Premiere – Director Josh Freed turns a Flip camera on his own relationships as a twentysomething. Peeling away neurosis and narcissism, the film is a compelling portrait of modern love.
  • Kati with an I (Robert Greene) World Premiere – Over the course of three tumultuous days, Kati – a teenage girl in Alabama – has to confront big life choices over love, family and her future. As Kati’s half-brother, director Robert Greene gains an intimacy that makes viewers feel part of the family.
  • Pink Saris (Kim Longinotto) In northern India’s state of Uddar Pradesh, the crusading Sampat Pal Devi dispenses street justice like a self-appointed Judge Judy, leading the “Pink Gang” of female enforcers.
  • Windfall (Laura Israel) After wind turbines are proposed for installation in upstate New York, the community’s excitement turns to suspicion over what the project entails. This eye-opening story exposes the dark side of wind energy development and the potential for financial scams.


There are 8 million stories in the naked city. This section showcases six of them. The appeal of these films radiates far beyond their backdrop of New York City. The subjects include the passing of an era in “Lost Bohemia,” the emergence of young talent in “To Be Heard,” the life of a writer in “Mother of Rock: Lillian Roxon,” the life of a play in “Puppet,” the theater director Richard Foreman in “mindFLUX,” and the musician David Byrne in “Ride, Rise, Roar.”

Each film individually exhibits a high degree of artistry. Watching several or all, viewers will experience a rich tour of innovators, subcultures, and inner circles.

The jury will honor one film that stands out to them as exemplary not just for New Yorkers, but audiences far and wide. We urge you to join the jury in watching all six films to remind yourself what makes NYC such a transformative place.

  • Lost Bohemia (Josef Birdman Astor) World Premiere – Director Josef Birdman Astor, a resident of the artists studios above Carnegie Hall, gives an insider’s account of the protracted battle to save the apartments and pays homage to their rich heritage.
  • mindFLUX (Ryan Kerrison) World Premiere – This profile of visionary theater director Richard Foreman draws upon interviews with F. Murray Abraham, Willem Dafoe, Yoko Ono, Lou Reed, Suzan-Lori Parks and others to pay tribute to his career.
  • Mother of Rock: Lillian Roxon (Paul Clarke) U.S. Premiere – Witness to New York’s music scene of the 1960s and 70s, Lillian Roxon was a trail blazer of rock criticism while mingling with the likes of John and Yoko, the Velvet Underground and Janis Joplin.
  • Puppet (David Soll) World Premiere – Taking us behind the scenes as theater director Dan Hurlin collaborates with master puppeteers for his play “Disfarmer,” Puppet explores why the this art form has been misunderstood in America.
  • Ride, Rise, Roar (David Hillman Curtis) A David Byrne concert film that blends riveting onstage performances with intimate details of the creative collaborations that make the music and performance happen.
  • To Be Heard (Roland Legiardi-Laura, Edwin Martinez, Deborah Shaffer, Amy Sultan) World Premiere – Three teenagers Karina, Pearl and Anthony cope with challenges of life in the inner city and find transformation from the radical poetry workshop Power Writing that gives them tools for expression.


The “Kaleidoscope” section offers family matinees on the weekend of Nov 6-7 featuring films suitable for viewers young and old.

  • Make Believe (J. Clay Tweel) A group of dedicated teen magicians amaze audiences by performing seemingly impossible feats while pursuing the title of Teen World Champion Magician.
  • Turtle: The Incredible Journey (Nick Stringer) U.S. Premiere – Presented in 3-D, a loggerhead turtle born on a beach in Florida, rides the Gulf Stream to the frozen north, swims around the entire North Atlantic to Africa and returns to the beach where she was born.


  • U2 3D (Catherine Owens, Mark Pellington) Marrying innovative digital 3D imagery and 5.1 Surround Sound with the excitement of a live U2 concert – shot at four South American stadium shows during the final leg of the band’s “Vertigo” tour – it creates an immersive theatrical experience unlike any 3D or concert film that has come before.
  • Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars: The Motion Picture (D.A. Pennebaker) A must-see for all Bowie fans, this class rock doc by legendary filmmaker D.A. Pennebaker takes you back to the Hammersmith Odeon concert on July 3, 1973.


In conjunction with DOC NYC’s previously announced Gala presentation of Werner Herzog’s new film Cave of Forgotten Dreams, the festival will feature a selection of the director’s past documentaries.

  • In Conversation with Werner Herzog The acclaimed director of Grizzly Man, Encounters at the End of the World, and other films sits for a live discussion of his career with New York Magazine film critic David Edelstein.
  • Land of Silence and Darkness The film follows Fini Straubinger, a fifty-six-year-old deaf and blind woman, who leads an inspiring life helping others with similar handicaps.
  • My Best Fiend In this personal essay film, Herzog reflects on his friendship with the tempestuous actor Klaus Kinski whose memorable collaborations with the director include Aguirre, Nosferatu, Woyzeck and Fitzcarraldo.
  • Wings of Hope In 1971, an airplane came apart over the Peruvian jungle. The only survivor was 17-year-old Juliane Kopcke who fell to the earth and escaped the jungle. Years later, Herzog takes her back to retrace her steps.


In conjunction with DOC NYC’s previously announced Gala presentation of Errol Morris’ new film Tabloid and In Conversation with the director, the festival will feature a selection of his past documentaries.

  • In Conversation with Errol Morris Author and friend Ron Rosenbaum interviews Errol Morris on his career and the films in this spotlight section.
  • A Brief History of Time Rarely screened since its original release, this film examines the life and work of Stephen Hawking, the physicist who has spent much of his life in a wheelchair, yet managed feats of the intellect often compared to Einstein’s.
  • First Person In a rare theatrical presentation, this screening showcases three of Morris’ favorite episodes from his “First Person” television series: “The Killer Inside Me,” about a woman who falls in love with serial killers; “Stairway To Heaven,” about a slaughter house designer; and “One in a Million Trillion,” about an obsessive game show contestant. (tickets on sale soon)
  • Gates of Heaven Morris’ debut film is an eccentric portrait of the American dream, focusing on two California pet cemeteries. One enterprise is set up by Floyd McClure at the intersection of two superhighways; the other is run by the Harbert family, who apply the latest marketing concepts to the profession.
  • The Thin Blue Line Billed as “the first movie mystery to actually solve a murder,” the film is credited with overturning the conviction of Randall Dale Adams for the murder of Dallas police officer Robert Wood, a crime for which Adams was sentenced to death. With its use of expressionistic reenactments, interview material and music by Philip Glass, it pioneered a new kind of non-fiction filmmaking.



  • DARKNESS ON THE EDGE OF TOWN (Thom Zimny) For one night, DOC NYC moves into the grand Ziegfeld Theatre in midtown Manhattan to present the world premiere of an extraordinary concert film. Darkness on the Edge of Town captures a performance by Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band that no one has seen. In December, 2009, the band set up at the historic Paramount Theatre in Asbury Park, NJ and performed – just for themselves and no audience – the entire 1978 album of Darkness on the Edge of Town. Springsteen’s manager Jon Landau has said this presentation “best captures the starkness of the original album.”
  • Orphan Film Symposium on NYC Curated by Dan Streible, this event uncovers forgotten footage of New York City that you may never have another chance to see, including Fox Movietone newsreel outtakes from the 1920s, an amateur city portrait from the 1930s, leftist campaign pieces from the 1940s, sixties verité, experimental Super 8 work from the 1970s, and a lost wedding film reunited with its owners forty-five years later.
  • The Road to Carnegie Hall (Stephen Higgins) World Premiere – Young musicians from the world over are plucked from obscurity when they win online auditions for a prestigious Carnegie Hall concert in the YouTube Symphony Orchestra.  With only two days to rehearse a complicated program under classical masters Michael Tilson Thomas and Tan Dun. This special screening will be followed by a short live performance by the cellist Joshua Roman.
  • The Medium Formerly Known as Radio: The Evocative Power of Sound The radio documentary is enjoying a golden age, on the broadcast airwaves—and newly reinvented on the Internet. Longtime public radio personality Dean Olsher, creator and host of The Next Big Thing on PRI (2000-2005), curates a selection of dramatic audio documentaries. The special guest is duPont-Columbia winner Joe Richman of Radio Diaries, who will present his new award winning documentary “Willie McGee and the Traveling Electric Chair.”
  • Lost Souls & Light Matter – A Conversation Lena Herzog – Acclaimed photographer Lena Herzog, whose book “Lost Souls” was recently featured as an exhibit at the International Center for Photography, shows slides from that project and previews her latest work “Light Matter.”
  • DOC NYU @ DOC NYC – Discover the next generation of documentary makers in this presentation of accomplished student work from the Kanbar Institute of Film & Television at New York University. Highlights include Central Park: The Park at the Center of the World by Suzannah Herbert; Hard Rock Havana by Nicholas Brennan; and Leaving the Yard by Alan Jeffries.


  • “Doc Convergence” on Nov 5 will hold panels about how documentary film intersects with photography, writing, performance and radio
  • “State of the Art” on Nov 6 will gather documentary film directors, cinematographers, editors and others for dialogues on their crafts.

Series Films