The Hot Docs International Documentary Film Festival in Toronto runs from April 27 through May 7. The lineup of this year’s edition of the festival features six Polish documentaries.

The 24th edition of the Hot Docs festival runs from April 27 through May 7, screening a total of 230 documentaries from 58 countries. The festival team points out that 48 percent of films screening at this year’s festival are films made by female filmmakers.

Polish Short Films at Hot Docs

The lineup of the festival’s short film section features Więzi (Close Ties) by Zofia Kowalewska and Wolta by Monika Kotecka and Karolina Poryzała (both films were produced by the Polish Filmmakers Association’s Munk Studio), Miejscy kowboje by Paweł Ziemilski (produced by Wajda Studio), and Goran the Camel Man, a documentary by Marcin Lesisz (produced by Stowarzyszenie Lubińska Grupa Filmowa Uisel Studio).

Komunia (Communion) in World Showcase Section

The festival’s World Showcase section will screen Anna Zamecka’s documentary Komunia (Communion), produced by HBO Polska, Wajda Studio and Otter Films. Most recently the film received the 2017 Polish Film Award for Best Documentary.

Photon in Nightvision Section

The Hot Docs Nightvision section lineup features Photon, a film directed by Norman Leto featuring Polish actor Andrzej Chyra. The film serves as a summary of what we know about life and evolution, visualising the current knowledge about the process of making matter. The first part of the film focuses on the creation of matter, stars and planets. The story then transforms into the second part, in which the narrator explains what we know (and what we don’t know) about the creation of life. How did complex life forms come to be? Using a few intricate examples from the everyday life of an average family, the filmmakers explain the biological background of various phenomena, including violence, alcoholism, and free will. In light of recent scientific discoveries, this leads to an interesting question: do we really get to decide on anything? The film’s final segment focuses on the future of mankind. Photon boldly foresees the convergence of mankind with technology. This visually striking tale ends with a presentation of current predictions in the field pf physics regarding the development of civilisation and the end of the world. The film was produced by Lightcraft.

War Watchers at Hot Docs Forum

The Hot Docs Forum lineup features War Watchers, a new project by Vita Maria Drygas. The film is produced by Drygas Production (Poland), Braidmade Films Ltd. (United Kingdom), Bekke Films (Belgium), and MiroGraph LLC (Ukraine).

According to polishdocs.pl, War Watchers is a documentary film that addresses the issue of war tourism. It portrays the people who, with the help of tourist agencies and under the watchful eye of bodyguards, travel to conflict zones or to the front lines. The documentary poses questions about the reasons behind people’s decisions to go on such journeys, as well as what the consequences of these decisions.

War Watchers has previously been presented at Sunny Side of the Doc in La Rochelle and at GZDOC in China.

The complete Hot Docs lineup is available on the festival’s official website: www.hotdocs.ca

Translated by Karolina Kołtun