I realize that I’ve been uncharacteristically silent on the subject of Hot Docs this year, which is unusual since it is my favourite film festival by some margin. But rest assured, I’ve been hard at work behind the scenes making sure that Toronto Screen Shots will offer more coverage this year than ever before. Along with my trusty correspondents Jay Kerr and Drew Kerr (should we call them the Doc Brothers?), I’m hoping to offer reviews of at least 20 titles from North America’s largest documentary film festival.
From more than 2,000 submissions, Hot Docs’ team of programmers has selected 166 films to be screened between April 29 and May 9 at venues across the city. Tickets and passes are on sale now, and as always, are the best bargain going for film lovers in this city. If you visit the box office in person (at Hazelton Lanes, on the lower level), you can even pick up DVDs from the Hot Docs Collection at a special price of just $15.95.
I won’t be posting full reviews until the festival starts, but here are a few reviews that will be going up for films I can definitely recommend:
- Gasland – a horrifying exposé of the environmentally-damaging practice of drilling natural gas wells, set to some very jaunty banjo music.
- The Kids Grow Up – a filmmaker works through his feelings of abandonment as his teenaged daughter prepares to leave home for college.
- Marwencol – a man recovers from a vicious beating which left him in a coma by building a miniature World War 2 village in his backyard.