Our Picks for DOXA Documentary Film Festival 2013

May 2, 2013

"Google and the World Brain"- Image: DOXA Documentary Film Festival

 

The documentary-invented by one Canadian (Robert Flaherty's Nanook of the North, 1922), named by another (NFB founder John Grierson)-holds a long-standing grip on us. Here, seven picks for our local doc fest.

 

 

THE HUMAN SCALE

Half the world lives in cities-by 2050, it'll be 6.5 billion people. How do we build settlements of warmth and connectivity? The Human Scale (Denmark, May 5) introduces Danish planner Jan Gehl, who's been addressing that question since the '60s. His interventions chronicled here-from Manhattan to Melbourne, Christchurch to Chong­qing-provide fascinating fodder for discussion.

 

 

GOOGLE AND THE WORLD BRAIN

Conspiracy theorists and copyright lawyers battle knowledge liberators in Google and the World Brain (UK/Spain, May 8), a wake-up call about one search engine's bid for dominance of markets, mind share, and, arguably, the future. Advocacy informs some of the finest docs.

 

 

BLACK OUT

Catch Black Out (UK, May 9), a look at Conakry, Guinea, where frequent power cuts force students to spend nights at the airport-the one source of light-as they struggle desperately to bootstrap through study.

 

 

FIRE IN THE BLOOD

Another great pick, Fire in the Blood (India, May 5), a celebration of Yusuf Hamied's fight with Big Pharma to supply the world with cheap generic AIDS drugs.

 

 

OCCUPY THE MOVIE

Surprisingly entertaining, Occupy the Movie (Canada, May 3, 7, and 11) gives Econ 100 background to the 99 percent movement.

 

 

MUSICWOOD

Musicwood (USA/Madagascar, May 4) gives liberal white guilt a face by profiling the role three guitar-making legends take in urging Alaska Natives to slow their clear-cutting.

 

 

BIG JOY

Cap the week with magnificent Big Joy (USA, May 11), the story of midcentury San Francisco iconoclast (artist, bisexual, Cannes-winning filmmaker) James Broughton and his infectious exhortation to live large, be happy, and "follow your weird."

 

DOXA Documentary Film Festival RUNS May 3-12, at various locations

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