Spotlight: Secrets & Lies

Spotlight: Secrets & Lies

Spotlight: Secrets & Lies

 

Vancouver, BC – Oh, the mendacity! From mass surveillance to little white lies, the consequences of deception and concealment are the focus of Secrets & Lies, our special Spotlight Program this year. The truth may be out there, but it is often buried in grey government documents, disclosed in secret meetings, and brokered in shady deals.

It is difficult to find a better or more important reminder of the necessity of speaking truth than our gala opening film Orlando von Einsiedel’s Virunga. In the verdant depths of Eastern Congo stands the Virunga National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and home to one of the last populations of mountain gorillas. But even in this most stunningly beautiful place, dark forces are at work.

Uncovering the facts demands courage, tenacity, and, often a willingness to get dirty. Long before Chelsea Manning and Edward Snowden were uncovering government surveillance tactics, a group of activists were working to reveal the dirty tricks undertaken by Hoover’s FBI in Johanna Hamilton’s new film 1971. The story of a group of murdered Chinese miners, hidden for more than a century, comes to light in Vernon Lott and Jennifer Anderson’s Massacred for Gold. Samantha Grant’s film A Fragile Trust recounts the rise and fall of Jayson Blair, the world’s most infamous plagiarist. A perfect storm of disaster capitalism and corruption collides in a New Orleans hospital in Alex Glustrom’s Big Charity. Conspiracy theory has no bottom in John Lundberg, Mark Piklington, Roland Denning and Kypros Kyprianou’s Mirage Men, a film that probes the UFO community and discovers something out of this world. The secret geopolitical machinations behind the release of Nelson Mandela are detailed in Mandy Jacobson and Carlos Agulló’s Plot for Peace. Callum Macrae’s No Fire Zone: The Killing Fields of Sri Lanka documents the events that led to one of the worst atrocities in recent history.

“Art is a lie that makes us realize truth,” said Pablo Picasso. A number of films in our Spotlight program make wildly creative use of this edict, none more so than Anna Odell’s The Reunion, a film that plays hardball with reality in the ultimate act of high school revenge. In Dan Geller and Dayna Goldfine’s The Galapagos Affair: Satan Came to Eden the lethal conflagration of sex, Nietzsche and chicken soup comes to life through the voice talents of Cate Blanchett.

DOXA Documentary Film Festival runs May 2 –11, 2014. Tickets are available online at www.doxafestival.ca. For further information, call DOXA at 604.646.3200. DOXA is presented by The Documentary Media society, a Vancouver-based non-profit, charitable society.