July 4th, 2012 | Comments Off
The East End Film Festival officially kicked off yesterday with a screening of a new documentary on Any Winehouse. This stunning doc just gave a taster of things to come as the festival has more than 20 documentaries listed in its 2012 programme. Here’s a list with our favourites.
Once the favourite holiday destination for London’s Eastenders, Jaywick in Essex is now the most deprived place in the UK. Following a handful of the town’s inhabitants, Jaywick Escapes is a touching exploration of the causes and effects of lives lived under poverty and social exclusion. Followed by directors Q&A. Read our full review here.
Thursday 5 July 8.15pm Genesis
An unflinching interrogation of the architects of the legal system used by the Israeli state to govern theOccupiedTerritories, Ra’anan Alexandrowicz’s Sundance Jury Prize winner is a coldly brilliant account of how a system originally designed to be temporary has persisted as a means of government for a whole population. A film that completely reinvigorates the cinematic debate around Palestinian rights and Israeli foreign policy. Read our full review here.
Wednesday 4 July 8.15pm Rich Mix
A portrayal of the reality of the Egyptian Revolution of January 2011, this first person documentary chronicles events as they unravelled on the streets and alleyways of Cairo as two filmmakers head out onto the streets to find out what is really going on, and promptly end up coming into direct contact with Mubarak’s forces. This screening will be followed by a director Q&A.
Wednesday 4 July 8pm Barbican Cinema
Pensioners from across the planet compete in the World over 80s Table Tennis Championships inInner Mongolia. Eight players with 703 years between them guide us through the extraordinary world of Veteran sports, as the competition is interwoven with intimate and candid portraits of home lives. A sweet and funny exploration of the hope, regret and immediacy of growing old. Followed by a director Q&A. Read our full review here.
Saturday 7 July 6pm Stratford Picturehouse
This documentary tells the inside story of a dissident who inspires global audiences and blurs the boundaries of art and politics. Director Alison Klayman received unprecedented access to Ai while working as a journalist in China, and her film is a detailed and nuanced exploration both contemporary China and one of its most compelling public figures.
Sunday 8 July 4pm Barbican Cinema
Retracing the story of East London’s cultural heritage through the rise of street-punk band The Cockney Rejects, and made by the same team behind Oil City Confidential, East End Babylon is an essential document of a portrait of Rock n’ Roll turbulence, West Ham fanaticism, and the history of East London in a period of creativity and social upheaval.
Read our full review here.
Saturday 7 July 7pm Genesis
Nominally a portrait of the lives of the animals of Montreal’s Parc Safari, Denis Côté’s exquisite film is in fact 2012’s equivalent of La Quatre Volte, a mesmerising meditation on the cycles of life and nature as told through the interaction between humans and animals including giraffes, elephants, goats, chimpanzees and bears.
Sunday 8 July 5.30pm Rich Mix
Following the last year of his life before his brutal murder, Call Me Kuchu encapsulates the struggle of David Kato,Uganda’s first openly gay man, and his struggle for the rights ofUganda’s LGBT community. Winner of the Teddy Award at this year’s Berlin Film Festival, this is an emotionally devastating portrait of bravery in the face of persecution. Followed by discussion with directors and David Kato Vision & Voice Award recipient Maurice Tomlinson.
Thursday 5 July 9pm Hackney Picturehouse
Chronicling the emergence of the ACT UP and TAG coalitions and their struggle to turn AIDS from ‘a death sentence into a manageable condition’ in the early 1980s, award winning journalist David France’s debut is not just a moving chronicle of a significant period of activism, but a tale of people taking on the system, and winning. Followed by Q&A and discussion.
Sunday 8 July 4pm Hackney Picturehouse
Inspired by Stephane Hessel’s bestseller ‘Time for Outrage’, veteran director Tony Gatlif’s powerful take on current global events shows us a world in flux through the eyes of a female illegal immigrant, taking us to the heart of the Occupy movement, the poverty of displaced people, and the dissatisfaction of a younger generation in revolt.
Sunday 8 July 8.30 pm Rio cinema
FromCable Street to Brick Lane is an independent, feature length documentary dealing with the fight against racism and fascism in the East End of London. The film explores how different communities came together in the 1930s, 1970s and 1990s to challenge racism and intolerance.
Thursday 5 July 5.30pm Genesis
A hypnotic study of the art of sprinting, this startling documentary, made in partnership with Adidas, reveals the hopes and struggles of London’s grassroots athletes preparing for the Team GB tryouts taking place shortly prior to the East End Film Festival. Come to Stratfordfor a special tribute to their efforts in the wake of the results. Followed by Q&A. Read our full review here.
Saturday 7 July 1.30pm Stratford Picturehouse
Written by Alexandra Zeevalkink
Alexandra Zeevalkink is a Dutch-born journalist living in London who founded DocGeeks in August 2011 in order to have a legitimate excuse to watch every documentary under the sun. She freelances for various publications and writes mainly about documentary films, art projects and social inequalities. When she is not blogging or watching films she enjoys theater, photography and reading loads of books. She is always on the look out for potential partnerships with other creative minds.
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