International Competition
  • About a Farm
  • Africa United
  • Before the Flood
  • Cinéma Invisible—The Book
  • Darwin’s Nightmare
  • Final Solution
  • Foreland
  • In the Shadow of the Palms—Iraq
  • Justice
  • Moving Adult Cats
  • The People of Angkor
  • Rehearsals
  • Route 181—Fragments of a Journey in Palestine-Israel
  • The 3 Rooms of Melancholia
  • The Virgin of Palermo

  • Jurors
  • Dominique Auvray
  • Su Friedrich
  • Jia Zhangke
  • Sai Yoichi
  • Wu Yii-feng
  • Juror
    Su Friedrich

    - [Juror’s Statement]

    What excites me these days is that documentary film, from my vantage point in the United States, seems to have reached a new level of interest for the general public. I’m not referring to all the stupid, and very unreal, “reality” shows, but rather to the large group of serious (as well as sometimes the funny or entertaining) documentaries that have been showing in major theaters in the U.S. during the past few years. This is a great change from the situation in the past, when only a small, devoted audience would take the time to see documentaries.

    It also seems that the documentary form has been blown wide open. There are certainly conventional films still being made, but there’s also so much experimentation going on, so many films that mix documentary with fiction, or in various other ways call into question the traditional notions of documentary film as something that’s objective, socially useful, inherently truthful, etc.

    I believe that all this activity is a very healthy sign. Documentary film has built a strong tradition that has stood the test of time, so it’s strong enough to stand up to all the challenges being brought to it by a diverse body of filmmakers. I don’t think any of us can or should say anymore what a proper documentary film is, but rather we should look at each film on its own terms and consider how that filmmaker has taken the general form and then used all their craft to make something which gives us knowledge, visual pleasure and a new way of looking at the world.

    Su Friedrich began filmmaking in 1978 and has produced and directed thirteen 16mm films and videos, including Gently Down the Stream (1981), The Ties That Bind (1984), Damned If You Don’t (1987), First Comes Love (1991), Rules of the Road (1993), Hide and Seek (1996) and The Head of a Pin (2004). Her films have won many awards, including the Grand Prix at the Melbourne Film Festival and OUTstanding Documentary Feature at OUTFEST (The Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Film Festival). Friedrich is the writer, cinematographer, director and editor of all her films, with the exception of Hide and Seek, which was co-written by Cathy Quinlan and shot by Jim Denault. She currently teaches film and video production at Princeton University.

    Sink or Swim

    - USA / 1990 / English / B&W / 16mm / 48 min

    Director, Script, Photography, Editing, Sound Editor: Su Friedrich
    World Sales: Outcast Films

    A series of twenty-six short stories describes the childhood events that shaped a girl’s ideas about fatherhood, family relations, work and play. A dual portrait of a father and a daughter emerges through the forceful text and the sensual black and white imagery depicting both the ordinary and extraordinary. Together these elements form a complex and emotionally intense film.

    The Odds of Recovery

    - USA / 2002 / English / Color / 16mm / 65 min

    Director, Script, Photography, Editing, Sound Editor: Su Friedrich
    World Sales: Outcast Films

    Faced with her sixth surgery and an ongoing hormone imbalance, the filmmaker turns the camera on a difficult patient—herself—and analyzes her chances for a happier, healthier life. Problems with the medical establishment become plainly clear, but so do the fear and denial that prevent this patient from making radical but necessary changes to her lifestyle.