Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Hot Docs 2009 Wrap Up


11 days of fantastic documentaries and I wish I could have packed more in there. Thankfully unlike last year, we didn't get hit with at TTC strike so I got to make it out to see something almost every day! Attendance was sure up this this year as the screenings were well attended with enthusiastic responses and it was a treat that so many of the filmmakers were their for Q&A's. Although the official awards have already been announced I'd like to add my 2 cents, especially since I've seen so few that won awards.

Here are some of the highlights of the festival from the perspective of the Movie Moxie.

Best Features: My Greatest Escape / Ne me liberez pas, je m'en charge
and Hunting Down Memory / Jakten På Hukommelsen

Best Shorts: Ali Shan and Plane Days

Most Enthusiastic Crowd and Best Q&A: Best Worst Movie

Most Inspiring: 65_REDROSES and My Greatest Escape / Ne me liberez pas, je m'en charge

Quintessentially Canadian: Nobody Waved Good-bye

Favourite Program: Made In...South Korea which included Action Boys / Woorin action beawooda and Farmer's Song / Nongminga, I'm going to cheat a little and include the South Korean film Old Partner / Wyo-nang So-ri even though it was part of a different program.

Best Day: Day 2 was a fun and fantastic day with screenings of Zombie Girl: The Movie and Best Worst Movie

Repeating themes: Portraits, connections, the online world

Wasn't expecting: Blending of seriousness with comedy: Big River Man and Cat Ladies

Fullest Screenings: All the huge full houses were American films: Art & Copy (still had latecomers coming in 30min into the film), Objectified (almost no seats available 30 minutes before the show) and We Live In Public.

Wish I hadn't missed: When We Were Boys

Happy Surprize: The sheer number of films in the festival that were by women directors. Often at film festivals the ratio seems about 90/10 male/female directors but Hot Docs 2009 had a huge number of women directors. Over half of the films I saw this year were from a woman director which I hope it a growing trend.

Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival ran from April 30 - May 10, 2009 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada

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