Pordenone Docs fest 2024 – Pordenone Docs Fest

Pordenone Docs fest 2024

From April 10th to 14th, with the XVII edition of Pordenone Docs Fest “Le Voci del Documentario”, the Cinemazero festival that every year brings the best of international real cinema to Pordenone, the city once again becomes the capital of documentary, an exclusive stage for nationally premiering stories that tell the world beyond the information accessible through various media channels.

“We will focus on the rights of women and minors, shedding light on lesser-known yet no less important stories. We will introduce them to an attentive audience, eager to go beyond what is daily recounted by mainstream media. An audience that expects non-trivial views every year, shedding light on both significant and lesser-known themes, guided by cinematic quality and the importance of testimonies, with a perspective of social impact through documentary,” says curator Riccardo Costantini. “Cinemazero couldn’t help but pay tribute – with a retrospective, a roundtable, and many guests – to Franco Basaglia, on the centenary of his birth. For us, this event is not just a simple anniversary directed to the past but above all a warning for our present, an arrow aimed towards the future. That’s why Franco Basaglia is 100 years old, an indicative present, here and now. In Friuli, in Italy, in the world. Because Basaglia has been one of the most international figures that Italian culture and society have been able to express from the sixties to today: his research, his actions, his ideas are alive and active wherever there is a reformist will of society, wherever there is critical and libertarian thought.”

The festival dedicates a retrospective to this intellectual cornerstone of the twentieth-century history, also itinerant in the cinemas of Friuli Venezia Giulia and then in Italy, reconstructing many of the stages of the “Basaglia journey” that have Trieste and Gorizia as fundamental places. The initiative, supported by the Friuli Venezia Giulia Region, also fits into the cultural paths of “Go2025! – Gorizia / Nova Gorica European Capital of Culture”. For the film section, it is curated by Federico Rossin and is the result of extensive research in major archives. It is a program with a pedagogical approach aimed mainly at new generations, which, with television and film products, both Italian and international, tells the human and political story of Basaglia and the anti-psychiatric movement, accompanied by a publication containing a critical filmography dedicated to documentary and mental illness with an international and trans-historical perspective. Also planned is the presentation, in collaboration with the Cinecittà Archives – LUCE Institute (in the year of the LUCE centenary), of “Nessuno o tutti – Matti da slegare” by Silvano Agosti, Marco Bellocchio, Sandro Petraglia, and Stefano Rulli, a broader, richer, and more varied version of the well-known “Matti da Slegare”, on the big screen for the first time since 1976 in its rediscovered full version.

Also this year, many national premieres are presented to the public and in competition. Among these, “Mourning in Lod” by Israeli director Hilla Medalia offers hope for peace in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict: from immersion in the microcosm of violence, anger, and hope of Lod/Lydd, one of the five “mixed” cities inhabited by Israelis and Palestinians, 50 kilometers west of Jerusalem, emerges an incredible story that indissolubly and forever binds the families of the two parties involved in a gift of love and future.

With the touching “Mediha” by Hasan Oswald (who will be present at the festival), also produced by Oscar-winning actress Emma Thompson, attention is brought back to the Yazidi genocide recounted through the eyes and determination of a teenager (who signs many of the shots and part of the direction) facing the trauma of ISIS imprisonment and slavery – of which she was a victim – without resigning herself, becoming a protagonist and witness to the redemption from the sale abroad of even her younger siblings.

Hiding Saddam Hussein,” twenty years later, brings back the truly incredible testimony of a simple man, an Iraqi farmer who – obeying orders – hid the dictator in his own home for eight months, during one of the most ruthless manhunts of recent decades. A story signed by Norwegian-Kurdish director Halkawt Mustafa (present at the festival).

After the success of “Be My Voice” (and its Italian tour conducted by Tucker Film), winner of the audience award at the festival in 2021, Swedish-Iranian director Nahid Persson returns to Italy, accompanying her latest documentary, “Son of the Mullah,” which tells the story of Iranian journalist Ruhollah Zam, who, unable to speak freely in his own country, was forced to expose its contradictions from abroad… until being deceived and then executed by the Iranian regime. The constant narrative of corruption, hypocrisy, and ferocity of regimes is a concrete example of the role the festival aims to play in supporting films even beyond the duration of the event.

Finally, there’s room for lightness with another national premiere, “Alreadymade” by Dutch director Barbara Visser, which tells the absurd story of Marcel Duchamp’s “Fountain,” the most famous urinal of all time, of which the director investigates the paternity revealing unexpected behind-the-scenes. The reflection on art and its power, with ironic and irreverent tones, is also present in “Soviet Barbara,” another national premiere, directed by Icelandic Gaukur Ulfarsson, which sees international “art star” Ragnar Kjartansson fully recreate in “Soviet” style the American soap opera “Santa Barbara” in a Moscow museum owned by an oligarch, with Putin’s blessing and the presence of the Pussy Riot, in a contrast of denunciation and provocation.

Many collateral events, as always, enrich the offerings of the event, which alongside screenings, provides masterclasses, roundtable discussions, industry meetings, and in-depth sessions facilitated by professionals, associations, and NGOs. There is a particular focus on the “Missing Triangle,” referring to the significant gap in the organized and cohesive relationship between directors/producers, distributors, and cinema exhibitors concerning documentaries, as well as a spotlight on emerging Italian documentary filmmakers in “Italian Doc, Future!”

Also noteworthy is the second edition of Nord Est Doc Camp, a workshop for finalizing documentaries in the editing phase, produced in the Triveneto region and supported by all the Film Commissions of these territories. In its first edition, one of the films followed – “Vista Mare” – won the prestigious “Festival dei Popoli” and was presented at the Locarno Festival, demonstrating the effectiveness of the mentoring program developed.

The festival receives support from the Ministry of Culture – General Directorate of Cinema, the Friuli Venezia Giulia Region, the Municipality of Pordenone, and the Friuli Foundation.

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