The reliably good Hot Docs is back for another edition this year. Here’s what I can single out on first perusal of printed programs:
Chavela: on the legendary Mexican lezzer singer-songwriter who counted Frida Kahlo among her many lovers. Trailer:
Secondo Me: follows cloakroom attendants (on and off the job) in three opera houses: Vienna Staatsoper, La Scala and Odessa.
The Harvest of Sorrow: a formally inventive biodoc on Sergei Rachmaninov.
Integral Man: mostly on architecture, somewhat on music, the doc on the late mathematician Jim Stewart and his famous house/concert hall.
Still Tomorrow: “Yu Xiuhua, a rural poetess, becomes an overnight success when her poem Crossing Half of China to Sleep with You goes viral. Sudden fame and fortune afford her the thing she’s always wished for: freedom from her husband of 20 years.”
Life and Death
The Lives of Thérèse: on the extraordinary life of human rights activist Thérèse Leclerc.
The Departure: a Japanese punk-rocker turned Buddhist priest tries to persuade people not to commit suicide and that staying alive is good. He does this daily. It begins to take its toll.
Derby Crazy Love – on roller-derby girls
A Memory in Khaki – Syrian artists in exile remember Syria. Is it still home, if it’s been destroyed and is now unrecognizable?
Rat Film: “Baltimore’s history of systemic class and racial segregation intersects with an unusual examination of its dense rodent population–and the culture that surrounds it–in this incisive and unsettling anthropological study of poverty in America.”
Hotel Sunrise: life and pursuit of happiness in a Slovak town called Cierna nad Tisou, once hailed as the Golden Gate of Socialism.