Hot Docs Canadian Intl. Doc Festival

Gosh, it’s big, the upcoming festival in Toronto. This is what is said on the website: “Hot Docs, North America’s largest documentary festival, offers an outstanding selection of over 200 films from Canada and around the world to Toronto audiences of more than 200,000.” On another place of the site, it is more precise: 232 films from April 25 to May 5.

It is a complicated website to navigate, with many sections, I went from one to the other ending up finding the solution: download the schedule, scroll down and it will be easier to see what is being screened. Link below. Let me also mention that there is a big industry section.

All right, let me mention some of the films I was happy to find in different

sections – films that filmkommentaren has reviewed or commented on, or films I know about from rough cut screenings:

In “Special Presentations” you find Heddy Honigmann’s “Buddy”, screened at Magnificent7 in Belgrade last week (, Mads Brügger’s “Cold Case Hammarskjöld” and Fredrik Gertten’s “Push” (that will be at DocsBarcelona as well).

In “World Showcase” you find the Iranian „Beloved” by Yaser Talebi, that was at Doker festival in Moscow, Reetta Huhtanen’s “Gods of Molenbeek” (a big hit at and I was very happy to find Andrei Kutsila’s Polish/Belarussian “Strip and War” to have North American premiere as will Serbian Andrijana Stojkovic with her “Wongar” (

In “Made in Italy” you – of course – find Claudia Tosi and her “I Had a Dream” ( and Valentina Primavera’s “Una Primavera”, that soon will be reviewed on this site.

And bravo that the festival has a section with the precise name “The Changing Face of Europe”, that includes the fascinating Lithuanian “Acid Forest” by Rugilé Barzdžiukaitė (, the premiere of Latvian Kaspars Goba’s “Inga Can Hear” and Marie Skovgaard’s “The Reformist – a Female Imam” that opened CPH:DOX (

In the “Artscape” there is the encounter with Marceline Loridan-Ivens, “A Woman. A Century” made by French Cordelia Dvorak and the impressive Polish “Symphony of the Ursus Factory” by Jasmina Wojcik. And finally – in the “Animal Magnetism” there is another Lithuanian fascination, “Animus Animalis” (A Story about People, Animals and Things) by Aisté Zegulyté, as well as the film that might end up being the most festival wanted documentary of the year, “Honeyland” by Ljubomir Stefanov and Tamara Kotevska (, opening film at Magnificent7 in Belgrade and the upcoming Cinédoc in Tbilisi.

And one more to mention, Pernille Rose Grønkjær’s ”Hunting for Hedonia” praised by Allan Berg on this site (

Most of the films are screened 3 times, many are already sold out but if you come in good time, there is a chance… The Toronto audience are being treated very well with this festival.

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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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