Documentaries

OCTOBER 2ND, 12:01AM – OCTOBER 11TH, 11:59PM

Here are 10 incredible documentaries from Pakistan, Iran, United States, Germany, France, and Canada. These films span subjects and various approaches to the art of the documentary with style, maturity, and care. Once you’ve purchased your ticket you’ll receive a link to screen the films. The films will become available to watch at 12:01 am Pacific Time on October 2nd and viewing will close at 11:59 pm Pacific Time on October 11th.

Get the Documentary Pass
DOCU-SHORT | Pakistan

How She Moves

Directed by Anya Raza & Aisha Linnea Akhtar

How She Moves follows the spirited Indu Mitha, a 90-year-old dance teacher, as she prepares for her final dance performance. A minority in both religion and profession, Indu has been teaching the classical Bharatanatyam dance form in Pakistan for sixty years. Though traditionally associated with stories of Hindu deities, under her creative direction, the form has been given a secular and feminist flavor in Pakistan. As two women filmmakers, we were allowed rare access into an otherwise unseen world of women and dance in Pakistan. Through an exploration of the colorful artistry of Indu and her students, we glean insight into culture, identity, and freedom of expression in a country where extremism, nationalism, and suspicion of dance as a legitimate art form push the classical dance towards extinction.

Instagram: @howshemovesthedoc | @anyarazaofficial | @aishalinneaofficial

 

MINI-DOC | United States

Black Stains

Directed by Tiffany Rhynard
Inspired by the personal experiences of Trent D. Williams, Jr., an African-American choreographer, Black Stains depicts the reality of living while black in the United States and addresses the systemic pattern of racial profiling by the police. Interviews with black men encompassing a broadspectrum of age, background, and experience illustrate personal human stories that bring abstract issues into sharper focus. Woven together with robust dancing and original music from composer Farai Malianga, the film invites a conversation about how to navigate complex racial issues in a country that refuses to make amends for its troubled past.
Instagram: @sistersunitepro
FEATURE | Germany, Finland, Netherlands

touched

Directed by Jukka Rajala-Granstubb & Marc Wagenbach
Pina Bausch, the world-famous dancer, choreographer and director of Tanztheater Wuppertal, died in June 2009. She left one of the most important artistic legacies – not only in the realm of dance. But why is her legacy still important for us? Marc is born in Wuppertal. With thirty, he became Bausch’s personal assistant two years before her passing. “touched” is a personal film about identity and loss, the function of art in society, about the citizen of Wuppertal and their memories. A different view on Pina Bausch’s heritage. A counter-archive in dance.
Instagram: @marc_wagenbach
FEATURE | United States

Merely Marvelous: The Dancing Genius of Gwen Verdon

Directed by Chris Robinson & Grammy Award Winner Ken Bloom
Gwen Verdon was Broadway’s greatest actor/dancers. The team of Gwen Verdon and Bob Fosse changed the world of dance on Broadway and film. Now the story of her life and career is spotlighted on a new documentary featuring an extraordinary collection of rare photographs and films documenting Verdon’s performances on Broadway, film and television.
FEATURE | Canada

According to Movement, a story in ten chapters

Directed by Béatriz Mediavilla
According to movement is a cinematic journey where the thoughtful gesture merges into this great human choreography. Divided into 10 chapters, the feature film is a poetic and playful reflection on the beauty of the everyday gestures that define us as living beings. It also presents a portrait of Thierry Thieû Niang through is choreographies. An invitation to live according to movement.
Winner of: Impact Doc Award, Best dance documentary at the Fine Art Film Festival of Venice, California. Official sélection of Screen.dance in Scotland
DOCU-SHORT | France

Through Jann

Directed by Claire Juge

Jann Gallois is a dancer and a choreographer. She is 29 and has as much energy as a bulldozer. Her body is her work tool. Always searching for the right movement, she twists, folds, stretches and breaks her body. But memories come back and this over-stressed body is reminded by ancient pains and wounds. How can this dancer live with her body while considering that she is “crossed by others and by herself” ?

Between this head which searches and a body so difficult to manage, Jann searches for her own balance.

Instagram: @novanima

DOCU-SHORT | Canada

All It Gives

Directed by Talia Woodland

Showcasing one of Toronto’s best dancers, “All It Gives” follows the story of Kosi Eze, a Nigerian immigrant who moved to Canada when she was 14. She was immediately hooked by the vibrant HipHop scene in Toronto and Mississauga. After meeting key members of the dance community; Marcelino “FrostFlow” DaCosta, Mariano “Glizzi” Abarca and Caroline “Lady C” Fraser, she was able to excel as a dancer in the Toronto community and beyond. From dancing in her high schools hallways, to winning international dance battles across the globe, Kosi’s story of growth is a glowing example of how HipHop has the power to inspire, uplift and support individuals, while building flourishing, diverse, and essential communities.

Talia Woodland: Winner of 2019 Women in Film Award/Scholarship from Humber College, Member of Borealis Soul. All It Gives subjects: Kosi, Lady C, Frost and Glizzi, have FAR too many awards, battle wins, and achievements to list. Please show your support by following them online.
Instagram: @taliawo @allitgives @kce__ @carolineladyc @remyronin @glizzi_dance

FEATURE | Iran

Gracefully

Directed by Arash Es’haghi
“I’ve been wishing to dance on the stage for 30-40 years. But everywhere is a stage for the one who wants to dance.” Gracefully offers a tender and moving portrait of an 80-year-old man who in his youth was known for traditional dancing at local ceremonies and celebrations dressed as a woman, and now works as a farmer. Since 1979, dancing publicly is forbidden in Iran, and for women and trans people, particularly sinful. Throughout the film, our protagonist finds discreet opportunities in which to dance: to express his art, in pursuit of happiness, and as an act of resistance.
Winner of Best Director at Yamagata Documentary FF 2019 Official Selection at New Orleans FF 2019 Official Selection at Damn These Heels LGBTQ Film Festival in Utah 2019 Official Selection at Sheffield Doc/Fest 2020
Instagram: @VeneraFilms
FEATURE | United States

Revival

Directed by Josefina Rotman Lyons
In the spring of 2017, four older choreographers, once seminal participants in the modern dance world and Broadway, started the monumental task of creating dances with a diverse group of New York seniors, most of whom had never danced on stage before. Over a few intense months, these choreographers, including the first black artist to have won a Tony award for choreography and a 92-year old former dance partner of Martha Graham, brought to life their ideas and sparked delight in the senior dancers. The film documents this unlikely event and, in the process, reveals the capacity of the older person to experience unrestrained joy and unwavering determination through dance and art. Among the artists featured in the film are George Faison, Ellen Graff, Naomi Goldberg Haas, Stuart Hodes, Chet Walker, and Marnie Thomas Wood.

A Special Thanks to Our Partners