Three very different films take Stranger Than Fiction Dublin DocFest towards its conclusion tonight. There are no guests on offer today but plenty still to be enjoyed, including two docs by Academy Award nominated filmmakers and a quiet Korean film that has lit up the festival circuit. Of particular excitement is the European Premiere of Detropia, a fascinating journey into a city in decline and perhaps a warning about where economic crisis might one day lead us. It is sure to resonate with Irish audiences.
THE INTERRUPTERS(DUBLIN PREMIERE) – 14:00
The Interrupters tells the moving and surprising stories of three Violence Interrupters who try to protect their communities from the threat of gangs. Academy Award-nominated director Steve James (Hoop Dreams) provides an unusually intimate journey into the stubborn persistence of violence in U.S. cities. Shot over the course of a year, the film captures a particularly inflammatory period in Chicago, following members of innovative organisation CeaseFire, who feel that the key to stopping violence is to confront it at its source.
Best Documentary – Independent Spirit Awards
WHAT THE CRITICS SAY:
“The Interrupters is a heavyweight film about a heavyweight subject of clear interest well beyond the United States” - Sight & Sound
“An intensely dramatic window into a world” – Globe & Mail
PLANET OF SNAIL (DUBLIN PREMIERE) – 16:20
Yi Seung-jun’s multi-award-winning film takes us to a world where a couple from the edge of society radiate unique love and affection. This is the planet of snail, inhabited by deaf-blind poet Young Chan and his wife, Soon-Ho, whose spinal disability means she is barely taller than his waist.
Beautifully filmed in a quiet observational style, the film provides a window into a daily existence that is touching, inspiring, and ultimately life-affirming. For this couple, changing a light bulb can be an amazing exercise in teamwork, and pleasure can be found in the simplest things, like exploring the texture of a tree or the feel of sand on your fingers. A unique experience that might change the way you look at life.
Best International Documentary – Documenta Madrid
Best International Documentary – DocAviv
Best Feature Length Documentary – IDFA
Best World Documentary – Silverdocs
WHAT THE CRITICS SAY:
“An absolute gem” The Observer.
DETROPIA(EUROPEAN PREMIERE) – 19:00
Detroit, once America’s fastest growing city, home to Motown and the bustling U.S. automobile industry, has suffered a long and painful decline in recent decades, exacerbated by the recent financial crisis: its population is now less than half of its 1950s figure; unemployment is unofficially estimated to be close to 50%; and the city is littered with abandoned houses, factories and commercial properties.
Academy Award nominees Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing, Detroit natives, follow a handful of residents who still haven’t given up hope that the city will somehow turn itself around, including an auto workers union leader and the owner of a struggling blues club. Poetic and elegiac in tone, the film nonetheless offers a stark warning of the consequences of crushing financial reality, something with which Irish audiences can surely empathise.
Best Editing – Sundance Film Festival
Grand Jury Prize – Boston Independent Film Festival
Grand Jury Prize – Traverse City Film Festival
WHAT THE CRITICS SAY
“A potent snapshot of a potential future for many American cities” – Variety.
Commissioning Editor of Film Ireland magazine and Programmer of 2012 Stranger Than Fiction Documentary Festival