THE FESTIVAL | 2019

There were be two screenings this year for the British Documentary Film Festival at the incredible Empire Cinema in Leicester Square, London! Feel free to scroll around and explore, or simply click on the screening you're interested in or the awards to jump straight to it!

DATES & TIMES

 

MAY 9TH

6.30pm

NOW OR NEVER

Director: Matt Senior

 

Now Or Never tells the story of the Batang Toru Forest, which lies in North Sumatra, Indonesia. It is a forest like no other, and remains largely unexplored. Batang Toru is also the one and only home for the most endangered great ape species in the world – the newly identified Tapanuli Orangutans.

WINTER HILL

Director: Lee Gray

Sullivan’s story sees her grow up in a world of appearances, where her diagnosis of ME was misunderstood time and time again. Her unwillingness to give way to her disorder was met with others’ scepticism of how she seemed to continue with the day to day - ‘… People are visual beasts...’ 

Winter Hill is a story about a relentless and driven young woman who finally opens up about the realities of living with a chronic disease, both physical, emotional and social, in the face of government disability cuts and the feeling of being left behind whilst everyone moves forward.

REFUGE IN THE ROCKIES

Director: Kaio Kathriner

 

Anderson Losada was 8 years old when he lost his leg to a landmine in Colombia. As a refugee, he was resettled in a small Canadian ski town which opened his eyes to the world of para-alpine skiing. He was on the brink of national competition, when citizenship complications restricted his athletic potential and withheld the sense of belonging he desires. Following Anderson’s Colombian past and his journey to citizenship in rural Canada, this short documentary explores the citizenship barriers he and other refugee minors face. When Anderson’s struggles caught the attention of a Canadian Senator, his story impacted an amendment that recently changed Canada’s Citizenship Act, to aid refugee minors.

THE FINAL BREACH

Director: Jess Webster

 

The inland waters of the Pacific Northwest play host to some of the world's most spectacular wildlife, including the killer whale. But this is no paradise for the ocean's top predator, and below the surface, a disturbing scene is unfolding.

Following a series of tragic deaths, the Southern Resident Killer Whales have been missing from their coastal home for over a month. Determined to find them, local whale watch enthusiasts Gary Sutton and Tasli Shaw take to the seas in a story that surrounds a community of killer whales in crisis, and two of their biggest advocates on a mission to protect them.

M1-KØ

Director: Fahad Shaikh

 

A film about journey to find a deeper meaning of the unknown, “M1-KØ” follows Mikolaj Zenliski, a Polish software engineer on his bicycle training in middle of the desert, who could be blasting off to the Red Planet after getting through to the next stage of the Mars One project.

THE CONQUEROR

Director: Timothy Blackwood

 

Maintenance worker by day, pro-boxer by night, Jerome Conquest lives in the city of 'Rocky' and comes from one of Philadelphia's most dangerous neighborhoods, Strawberry Mansion. When Conquest loses his best friend, Calvin, to street violence, he turns to boxing as a way to improve his life, which begins a story of redemption, not only for him but for his struggling community.

 

MAY 9TH

8.30pm

DAMBE

Directors: Alex Simpson & Sebastian Barros

This is a film about Taye, the reigning Dambe boxing champion of his local community in Lagos, Nigeria.

Often called ‘Fight Club - Nigerian style’, fighters wrap their arms tightly in rope with the aim of knocking down an opponent in one strike. It is a fiercely competitive sport and largely undocumented, until now.

VULVA

Director: Elliott Watson

 

Girls as young as nine are seeking non-medical labiaplasty surgery. In the UK alone, hundreds of girls under 15 undergo the procedure each year.

An activist, a psychologist, a doctor, a professor, and a girl named Lucy. These five perspectives combine in an attempt to better understand the rise of female genital cosmetic surgery, addressing the hypocrisies of first world values, and the undeniable role that capitalism plays.

THE SIGNALMAN

Director: Sema Basharan

 

The only violin maker in Cornwall in the early twentieth century, and winner of numerous awards for his craftsmanship, Albert Coad is remembered by only a few – those who knew him personally, and those who treasure and play his beautiful instruments. This oral history documentary unearths the story of Albert, preventing him from being lost completely from local history.

MATHEW VS. PRITCHARD

Directors: Jake Hardy & Ethan Blake Brooks

Ask anyone from Wales who Mathew Pritchard is and they could probably tell you; From a daredevil stuntman with his own TV show, to a healthy fitness fanatic, Pritchard's done it all. But with the 15 year anniversary of Dirty Sanchez rapidly approaching, it’s time to reflect on the man who will only sleep when he’s dead.

THE UK IN 100 SECONDS

Director: Daniel Raven-Ellison

 

What does the United Kingdom really look like? To get a better sense of proportion, let's go on a 100 second walk across our nation. Each second of the walk reveals one percent of our lands and how they look from above.

Are you ready for the UK in 100 seconds?

Do we need to re-think this mix of the lands we have, and how we use them? 

WHAT CONSTITUTES HOME?

Director: Alex Williams

 

The discovery of 8mm home movies shot in the 1960s instigates a conversation between three family members about what, and where, 'home' is.

REQUIEM

Director: Alex Godfrey

Bermuda has always been associated with disappearances. But those were just modern myths. In the last 40 years, the island has seen a drastic decline in its top predator.

Requiem investigates the disappearance of sharks from the island’s waters. Alex Godfrey goes on a personal journey to find out what has happened and what it means for the island’s reefs.

THE NOMINEES

2019

 

THE ENVIRONMENTAL AWARD

NOW OR NEVER

THE FINAL BREACH

*REQUIEM*

THE WILD ANIMAL AWARD

NOW OR NEVER

*THE FINAL BREACH*

REQUIEM

THE HERITAGE AWARD

*DAMBE*

THE SIGNALMAN

WHAT CONSTITUTES HOME?

BEST DOCUMENTARY

*NOW OR NEVER*

VULVA

REFUGE IN THE ROCKIES

BEST INTERNATIONAL SHORT

REFUGE IN THE ROCKIES

M1-KØ

*THE CONQUEROR*

BEST BRITISH SHORT

NOW OR NEVER

WINTER HILL

THE FINAL BREACH

DAMBE

*VULVA*

THE SIGNALMAN

MATHEW VS PRITCHARD

THE UK IN 100 SECONDS

WHAT CONSTITUTES HOME?

BEST STUDENT FILM

NOW OR NEVER

WINTER HILL

THE FINAL BREACH

*THE SIGNALMAN*

MATHEW VS PRITCHARD

REQUIEM

*WINNERS WILL BE DENOTED WITH ASTEREKS*

SPECIAL MENTION

2019

THE TROUBLE WITH WOLVES

Director: Collin Monda

Death threats, court battles, and an iconic endangered species in middle, The Trouble With Wolves takes an up close look at the most heated and controversial wildlife conservation debate of our time. The film aims to find out whether coexistence is really possible by hearing from the people directly involved.

The Trouble with Wolves was unable to screen with us due to unforeseen circumstances, however we would still like to honour this incredible film which has tackled a difficult topic about one of the world's most beloved and feared creatures.

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