Few films at this year’s festival are as equally inspiring and incendiary as Claudia Sparrow’s profile of Peruvian subsistence farmer Máxima Acuña.
The numerous historical and political details present in On the Inside of a Military Dictatorship, director Karen Stokkendal Poulsen’s look at Myanmar’s tenuous and crumbling democracy, are a lot to take in over a single, tightly packed sitting, but as a representation of an underreported and complex story, it’s certainly commendable.
Director Matt Gallagher takes a poignant, pointed, and impassioned look at one Canadian man’s fight to hold the Catholic Church accountable for sexual abuse with Prey, an unprecedented look at the legal side of prosecuting such charges.
Not quite a documentary and not quite a thriller, Alex Rivera and Cristina Ibarra’s entertaining hybrid experiment The Infiltrators follows a group of young immigrant activists and their ambitious bid to take down a U.S. deportation and detention centre down from the inside.
Deceptively simple in its construction, but unforgettable in terms of its impact, Ubaydah Abu-Usayd and Abderrahmane Hedjoudje powerful and heartbreaking documentary Your Last Walk in the Mosque gives the victims and witnesses of a mass shooting another chance to move towards healing and share their stories of grief, loss, and even hope.
A frightening, effective call to action, anger, and concern, Fredrik Gertten’s look at the global housing crisis in Push should give viewers further pause and a more comprehensive view of an issue that goes well beyond gentrification.
Danish filmmaker Pernille Rose Grønkjær looks at the groundbreaking, misunderstood, and ethically sticky work of neurosurgeon Dr. Robert Heath and his experiments in the field of Deep Brain Stimulation in the curious, informed, and well balanced documentary Hunting for Hedonia.
River Silence, director Rogério Soares’ look at displaced persons from the Amazon Basin, isn’t the most graphic film at this year’s festival, but it’s possibly the most depressing and hopeless.
A wholly original and impactful look at growing up Indigenous in Australia today, Maya Newell’s equally artful and emotional In My Blood It Runs is one of the standout world premieres at this year’s festival.
More of a companion piece and continuation of the work he did on his previous documentary, Human Flow, artist and filmmaker Ai Weiwei’s The Rest isn’t any different from his last film, but that also might be what makes it so vital.