As usual in our blog, we arrive at a time of the year when we have to look back and see which documentaries accumulate more merits to attend the most important event of American cinema. Guidedoc has chosen our favorite documentaries to fight for the Oscar for the best documentary feature film 2020.
Midnight Traveler by Hassan Fazili
When the filmmaker Hassan Fazili was threatened with death by the Taliban after shooting a film about a Taliban leader who laid his weapons for peace, the only option was to escape. With three cell phones, Fazili, his wife and daughters begin to register their pilgrimage through several countries to Europe, a three-year long journey compressed in an hour and a half of feature film. The film premiered at Sundance and was screened in the Panorama section of the Berlin International Film festival.
Apollo 11 by Todd Douglas Miller
This documentary arrives 50 years after the Apollo 11 managed to land on the surface of the moon. It is a film filled with never seen before footage on the behind the scenes of this feat of science. The film had its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival and has had good reviews that highlight the director's narrative decision to discard interviews and conventional narration to rather spin a carousel of images and archive sounds that create a sense of stellar immersion.
The Biggest Little Farm by John Chester
Surely the most friendly documentary for the whole family, this film shows the filmmaker John Chester and his family as they take the challenge of living on a traditional farm in California. Their aim is to be able to live far from civilization and take charge of planting and raising animals to make a sustainable family economy.
But very soon several problems begin to emerge, from natural disasters to expected inconveniences for those who interfere in an ecosystem that is not theirs. The film was released in Telluride and was the runner-up in Toronto´s People's Choice Documentary Award.
The Cave by Feras Fayyad
Feras Fayyad, an Oscar-nominated Syrian filmmaker for his film Last Men in Allepo, returns to Syria to portray a group of female doctors who day by day try to save lives in an underground hospital. The film makes visible the sexism that these women must resist on a daily basis while risking their lives to do their job. The film was presented at the Toronto Film Festival in the TIFF Docs section.
Cold Case: Hammarskjold by Mads Brügger
Undoubtedly the most humorous piece on the list, this documentary conceived as a kind of conspiracy theory with dyes of murder case film unearths the mysterious death of former UN Secretary General Dag Hammarskjöld, who died in a plane crash in 1961. The filmmaker Mads Brügger is the main protagonist of the film, as he puts himself at the forefront of an operation to find the truth about the case with his sarcastic and witty personality.
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