Docs & Talks/ 2

Bravo! It’s quite a festival that the Danish Cinemateket and the Danish Institute for International Studies (DIIS) presents in the Film House in Copenhagen. And yet it is not “only” a festival with high quality documentaries from all over, it is ALSO a so-called event, where screenings of the films are followed by Talks. Connected to international themes of today, inviting us viewers to go deeper via films and discussions than we are used to through the daily news… These were the words welcoming the new festival on this site last year in February. We posted 12 texts about the festival last year and we intend to cover it again through pre-talk, reviews and visits to some of the screenings. Our experience with the festival was very positive, so welcome back – and for those who are not in Copenhagen, follow the program, might give you inspiration to do the same.

12 is a good number – there are 12 films in the program, a couple of them have been reviewed on this site, actually recommended, those are “Mogadishu Soldier” and “Convictions”.

About “Mogadishu Soldier” I wrote: …Taken from no fewer than 523 tapes,

this compilation (film) gives an honest and sometimes revealing glimpse behind the scenes of war… 523 tapes in the hands of Norwegian Torstein Grude and Danish Niels Pagh Andersen, the again-and-again praised Danish editor, who has put the filmed impressions and interviews and battle scenes together in a way so it is watchable… even if a documentary addict like me had to look away from the corpses and the injured soldiers, and the scenes as well, where captured enemies, children fighting for Al-Sharaab sit there with grown-up soldies surrounding them. It hurts. They get close, the Burundian cameramen… whio had been given cameras by Grude. As an example of the building of “Docs & Talks” a senior researcher from DIIS and a representative from the Somali community in Denmark will talk about the situation in the country and the role of UN and the African Union.

And a quote from the review of award winning “Convictions” by Tatiana Chistova that demonstrates the director’s sense of the absurdity of being called for military service… and homophobia: … There’s a nurse, uniformed military men, a woman who puts all the questions – in the room where Viktor enters asking for ”alternative military service”, because of his, as he puts it, ”non-traditional sexuality”. His case is discussed, a nurse comes in and says that she does not think homosexuality is a decease… But the camera and the sound catches the leading lady at the table saying to the military man next to her: ”… maybe he is insane”!… After the film senior researcher Flemming Splidsboel Hansen fra DIIS will talk about Russian current nationalism.

Just two out of 12 – there are also short films and debate from Kurdistan and Myanmar, the brilliant “Mama Colonel” from Congo, the German “Meuthen’s Party” about the leader of the righ wing party Afd, the Basque “Walls”, the Swedish “Dead Donkeys Fear No Hyenas”, “A Possible Algeria” by French Viviane Candas, who will be present at the screening, another French on migration “On Call”, “Get me Roger Stone” is a film from Trump’s US and finally the film that opens the festival #The Road” from China, by Zanbo Zhang.

Wow for a program, we will be back with more as the festival gets closer.

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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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