Documenta Madrid floods the city with the best national and international documentary cinema, both classic and undiscovered

With five cycles, 26 films in competition, 4 projects in Final Cut and 5 venues, Documenta aims to flood Madrid with the most daring documentary filmmaking 
Documenta Madrid
Documenta Madrid
  1. What is cinema and filming Madrid 
  2. Competitive Section 

The 21st edition of Documenta Madrid, Madrid City Council's International Film Festival, organised by the Department of Culture, Tourism and Sport, will be held from 28 May to 2 June.  

The festival is based on two thematic pillars: a reflection on what cinema is and learning about what it means to film a city, in this case filming Madrid. With five cycles, 26 films in competition, 4 projects in Final Cut and 5 venues, Documenta aims to flood Madrid with the most daring documentary films on the national and international scene.  

What is cinema and filming Madrid 

The reflection on what cinema is focuses on its material and physical dimension. And as part of this reflection, Documenta Madrid invites filmmaker Laida Lertxundi, whose unmistakable style is linked to 16 mm, to create the festival's image. In addition, Documenta Madrid has Christoph Huber, curator of the Austrian Film Museum, as a special guest of the Lucid Cameras section, with screenings in analogue format. 

On the other hand, the thematic axis centred on the Filmar Madrid adventure takes centre stage at the opening of the festival with the premiere of 50 years of "Octobre à Madrid" (filmed diary), by Joseph Morder, a film promoted by Documenta Madrid and created expressly for this event based on material that the filmmaker has been gathering for years, in homage to the film of the same name by Marcel Hanoun. Within this same theme, the workshop "What's left". A workshop for listening, with the artistic collective Paco Graco and the film director Juan Cavestany, will delve into how to find the stories of Madrid. And the Imagining Madrid section will bring together some of the city works that Intermediae Matadero has carried out over the last decade with filmmakers such as Gabriel Azorín, Óscar Vincentelli and Terrorismo de autor. 

Competitive Section 

The Competitive Section, which can be seen in its entirety at Cineteca Madrid, has 13 titles in the National Competition and another 13 in the International Competition, selected from among the 1,566 films from 20 different nationalities that competed in this year's competition. The selected films will compete for the Best Film Award, worth 10,000 € for each section; the Fugas Creative Risk Award, worth 5,000 € for each section; and the Cineteca Madrid Audience Award, worth 1,000 € per section, the latter awarded by audience voting.  

The films in the National Competition revolve around stories of social and personal life that look at the past from different perspectives, such as "Amoramar", by Daniel Pérez Valderrama; "Coolor'92", by Carlos Baixauli; "Dulcinea", by Paloma Polo; "La Hojarasca", by Macu Machín; "Todo lo cubre la sal", by Joana Moya; and "Lavadoiro", by Ana Amado and Lois Patiño.  

In addition, other titles focus on people's relationship with technology and learning about life, such as "For here am I sitting in a tin can far above the world", by Gala Hernández López; "Lost Dreams", by Miguel Ariza; "Los restos del pasar", by Luis (Soto) Muñoz and Alfredo Picazo; or "Mitología de Barrio", by Alejandro Pérez Castellanos, Antonio Llamas, Jorge Rojas (espírituescalera collective). Finally, some films approach the sensorial with titles such as "El canto de los años nuevos", by Alexander Cabeza Trigg; "M-hole", by Ian Margo; or "Natsu No Uta", by Jorge Suárez Quiñones Rivas.  

The 13 titles in the International Competition also focus on the intersection between History in capital letters and small, anonymous stories. This is the case of "Avalancha", by Daniel Cortés; " Anqa ", by Helin Çelik; " Contractions ", by Lynne Sachs; " Mitahat le shemesh khula " (Under a Blue Sun), by Daniel Mann; " Rosinha e otros bichos do mato " (Rosinha and Other Wild Animals), by Marta Pessoa; and " Broken View ", by Hannes Verhoustraete.  

On the other hand, fantasy as an engine of reflection is present in other titles in the International Competition, such as "City of poets", by Sara Rajaei; "La historia se escribe de noche", by Alejandro Alonso Estrella; "La terminal", by Gustavo Salvador Fontán; "Laguna del soldado", by Pablo Álvarez Mesa; or "Ozr el wezzah" (The excuse of the goose), by Abdo Zin Eldin and Mahdy Abo Bahat. Another theme addressed by some of these films has to do with cinema as a tool for inner and relational exploration, such as "The roller, the life, the fight", by Elettra Bisogno and Hazem Alqaddi; or "While the green grass grows", by Peter Mettler.  

Corte Final, the section aimed at films in the final stages of Spanish production or co-production, has selected four projects this year from among the 43 entries received: "Dream of Another Summer", by Irene Bartolomé; "Fósiles del mar blanco", by Lina Gorbaneva; "El vol de la cigonya" (The Flight of the Stork), by Soumaya Hidalgo and Berta Vicente Salas; and "Krakatoa", by Carlos Casas. These four projects will compete for two awards: a cash prize of 4,000 € and the Freak Agency Distribution Award, new this year, worth 6,000 € plus support for the distribution of the film at festivals for two years, starting from the moment of its completion.