Some interesting documentary films coming out in 2021
Acasă, My Home by Radu Ciorniciuc
For nearly 20 years, the Enache family has been living off-grid among the lakes and tall grass of the abandoned delta just a stone’s throw from the urban sprawl of Bucharest. Patriarch Gica long-ago chose to reject conventional living, instead settling with his wife and nine children in a makeshift hut, surviving off the fish that eldest Vali laboriously sells door-to-door in the city.
But, when the area is reclaimed for the establishment of a new urban park, inviting an incongruous cameo appearance from Prince Charles, director Radu Ciorniciuc tracks the family’s reluctant and arduous return to civilisation.
Acasă will be screening online on 28 November at 19:00 CET.
The Kiosk by Alexandra Pianelli
When she is called upon to help out the family business, director Alexandra Pianelli decides to film a diary cum industry exposé from her mother’s kiosk in the wealthy 16th arrondissement of Paris. For almost a century, generations of her family members have stood in the same two-by-one metre space, flogging newspapers, magazines and postcards to the daily humdrum of headlines, the clink of the cash register and the conversations of their punters.
However, she returns to the kiosk at a difficult time for the industry as strikes, the dominance of online news and greedy corporatism draw the family ever closer to the edge.
Teeming with charm, laden with funny moments but with an exceptional sensitivity to the little world around it, “The Kiosk” is an endearing and highly entertaining film that will surprise you with its depth of emotion.
No official release date has been set.
Garage People by Natalija Yefimkina
“Another fucking adventure, damn it” mutters a scrap metal reseller as he tows an old bus to his garage for dismantling.
Natalija Yefimkina is our silent guide to the kaleidoscopic world of the Russian garage people. There’s no telling what goes on behind each tiny door… one man radios to passing air traffic, the next breeds poultry and another has spent 25 years digging a five-floor deep tunnel.
These are private spaces, where each is free to explore their obsessions, tinker endlessly or generate a hustle. Every garage is its own little island, with its own look, purpose and inhabitants, who occasionally drift into contact with one another.
A beautifully shot, fascinating journey into a bittersweet world of wonder and hardship.
Garage People will be screening online on 30 November at 15:45 CET.
The Magnitude of All Things by Jennifer Abbott
A poetic diagnosis of humanity’s mental response to the climate crisis that borrows from filmmaker Jennifer Abott’s visceral experience of losing her sister to cancer. The film reminds about another well known story of the director of the movie One Cut, One Life.
Through her sister’s diary entries and reflective moments with activists from around the world, Abbott brings a completely unique take to an ever-expanding subset of films that tackle the issues of climate change.
“The Magnitude of All Things” focuses on the universal feeling of grief and applies it to the loss of our environment, a tug on your heartstrings far more personal and powerful than you might expect.
The Magnitude will be screening online on 26 November at 18:00 CET and on 29 November at 15:00 CET.
Bulletproof by Todd Chandler
For children in the US armed guards, shooting drills and weapon shake-downs are becoming a fact of life. In the process, protecting schoolchildren from mass shootings is emerging as a lucrative business.
Ruthlessly, and in true American fashion, security camera systems, bulletproof hoodies, door-locking systems and fire-arm providers are fighting it out in trade fairs to capture the market’s growing demands. By mixing candid shots of drills, security protocols and firearms training with the familiar aspects of school life, “Bulletproof” provides a shocking insight into just how bad things have got.
However, it also picks up on he positive changes happening within schools and the growing rejection of the status quo from both teachers and students alike.