The 18th edition of the Montreal International Documentary Festival (RIDM) has recently kicked off. Documentary films are of a lower profile than drama, romantic comedy or action as they don’t have the star pull of say a Tom Cruise, Angelina Jolie or Channing Tatum. What documentary films do bring to the table are subjects that are interesting, relevant and affect a large portion of the population.
Films screening at the festival will shed light on topics such as public housing in Saint Michel, the invasion of Iraq and what is going on now in Syria, an Arghani unit fighting against the Taliban, the lives of American soldiers between deployments, activists in war zones, the migrant and refugee crises, the battle in Quebec against pipelines, and police training in Montreal.
All in all it will be 144 films from 42 countries with many being world, Canadian or Quebec premieres. The roster of films is comprised of both feature length and short films. Most of the films in the festival will be taking part in one competition or another. The categories include Official Competition, Canadian Feature Competition, International Short and Medium-Length Competition, and Online Competition.
Some of the brightest upcoming stars and veteran filmmakers will either be at the festival or have their films screening. American filmmaker Thom Anderson, who will be in attendance, will be the subject of a retrospective of his work. Many consider Anderson to be one of the best documentary filmmakers ever for his skillful way of using archival footage. Eight of his films will screen at this year’s RIDM, including Los Angeles Plays Itself and The Thoughts That Once We Had. As an added bonus the director will be part of a panel discussion on architecture.
Other highlights include Danish filmmaker Camilla Nielsson bringing her latest Democrats, French filmmaker Claire Simon will be at her screening of Les bois dont lest rêves sont faits, French filmmaker Cyril Leuthy will transport the viewer to Algeria in La nuit s’achève, U.K. filmmaker Saeed Taji Farouky will present his film about the absurdity of war in Tell Spring Not to Come This Year, U.S. filmmaker Luke Meyer uses a metal band to shine light on music marketing in Breaking a Monster, and Canadian filmmaker Michelle Shepard will screen her anticipated film about Omar Khadr called Guantanamo’s Child: Omar Khadr.
-Dates: November 12-22, 2015
-Venues: Cinema du Parc, Concordia University, UQAM, Excentris, Cinémathèque Québécoise, Pavillon Judith-Jasmin
-Ticket Purchase: www.ridm.qc.ca
-Ticket Prices: 5 Ticket Booklet: Senior/Student: $40, Regular: $50
DCM a la Carte: Senior/Student: $60, Regular: $80
RIDM Passport: Senior/Student: $80, Regular: $100
Single Tickets: Senior/Student: $9.50, Regular: $11.50