Each spring semester, we highlight a selection of recent and historical documentaries that extend the nonfiction form in provocative ways. We are delighted to welcome Jem Cohen as our second Les Blank Lecturer; he will discuss his creative process before a screening of his most recent film and a selection of his Occupy Wall Street newsreels. The series continues through April with several portrait films that explore the mysteries of image making. A history of an early video collective and a self-portrait by a documentary cinematographer raise issues around depicting current events, how stories are shaped, and what images we see and why. Documentary legend Frederick Wiseman’s most recent work is a portrait of a New York community, from residents meeting about a Pride parade to Hispanic immigrants relaying stories of border crossings and business owners and tenants fretting about rising rents and gentrification.
This season’s series intersects with our tributes to Paz Encina, Sergei Loznitsa, and Sharon Lockhart. Also of interest, our Straub-Huillet series, Safeguarding Cinema, the African Film Festival, and Hippie Modernism: Cinema and Counterculture all include excellent documentaries you’ll want to check out.
Kathy Geritz, Film Curator