A US whistle-blower and Nordic humour at CPH:DOX
by Jorn Rossing Jensen
- Unspooling from 6-16 November, the Copenhagen International Documentary Film Festival is ready with more than 200 films from over 60 countries
After taking a record-breaking 71,000 admissions last year, CPH:DOX – the Copenhagen International Documentary Film Festival, Scandinavia’s largest showcase for documentaries – has selected more than 200 films from over 60 countries for this year’s programme, which takes place from 6-16 November.
And it will not only show in Copenhagen: a package of DOX:ON:TOUR will screen at several venues in the capital region and on the island of Zealand, and Danish director Anders Østergaard’s festival opener, 1989 – about the fall of the Berlin Wall – will unspool in 14 cities all over Europe, from the UK to Russia.
Oscar-nominated US director-producer Laura Poitras is the 2014 guest curator and will not only introduce her Citizenfour [+see also:
film profile], about US whistle-blower Edward Snowden and his unveiling of NSA secrets, but will also present the Astro Noise section of films, which have surveillance as the main theme.
“The documentary is one of the arts that actually has something to offer in terms of creating social and political reflection. And we would like our festival to guarantee that the potential for change is put into action – we are confident that the audience is ready for it,” said Tine Fischer, director of CPH:DOX.
“We want our programme to showcase not only the best and bravest works from the international scene, but also a selection of films which – in a wider sense – have a real potential to enter our private and collective spaces, and effect change,” Fischer added.
Besides Østergaard’s 1989, contenders for the DOX:AWARD include US director Joshua Oppenheimer's Danish production The Look of Silence [+see also:
film profile] – his companion piece to The Act of Killing [+see also:
film profile] (2012) – which won four prizes at Venice, and Danish director Camilla Nielsson’s Democrats, about Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe’s election campaign.
Israeli visual artist Keren Cytter is the 2014 Artist in Focus, while Swedish director Johan Jonason’s Conquering China and Norwegian filmmaker Gunnar Hall Jensen’s A Cup of Tea will add a touch of Nordic humour to the programme. In addition, the Swedish production of Thomas Jackson, Charlotte Landelius and Henrik Stockare’s Foodies will contribute a visual love letter to the world of gastronomy.
Besides showing films by well-known directors – Harun Farocki (Germany), Bill Morrison (US), Wim Wenders (Germany) and Martin Scorsese (US) – the festival also includes portrayals of international celebrities, including Argentinian football player Messi, Belgian fashion designer Raf Simons, US rocker Alice Cooper, US rapper Nas, US philosopher Noam Chomsky, Icelandic superstar Björk, French author Michel Houellebecq, Danish porn actress Denice K and US singer-songwriter Elliott Smith.