Documentary festival Doku.Arts returns with a focus on game-changing essay films.
One of the most reliably compelling shindigs in the Berlin film calendar is back for a landmark 10th instalment, under the moniker “Essaydox” and with video essays on the mind.
The fest opens strong with the acclaimed Notes on Blindness, a compassionate, formally daring work which takes the personal audio recordings of the late Australian theologian John Hull, who went blind at the age of 45, and brings them to the screen via lipsynched actors and evocative cinematography.
Also screening Oct 7 and 11, it’ll be accompanied by English-language narration for blind audience members and even its own VR app. Closing night selection Beyond Zero: 1914-1918, the latest by film archaeologist Bill Morrison, arranges damaged footage from WWI to Aleksandra Vrebalov’s disjointed string compositions, using the degradation of celluloid to remind us of the otherworldly trauma of war.
In between these tentpole screenings, check out an examination of Samuel Beckett’s foray into filmmaking (Notfilm: a Kino-Essay by Ross Lipman); a riveting account of ethnographer Ella Maillart’s 1939 journey to Afghanistan (Ella Maillart – Double Journey); and a master class with late American auteur Sidney Lumet (By Sidney Lumet)... and so much more!
Doku.Arts, Oct 6-23, Zeughauskino, Mitte