Friday, Jul 21 at 9:00 pm – Saturday, Jul 22 at 11:00 pm
Screening, Masterclass & Party with RIDM and Sylvain L'Espérance!
We are thrilled to welcome RIDM (Montreal International Documentary Film Festival) back this July to take over UnionDocs for a weekend days to show work from award-winning documentary filmmaker, Sylvain L’Espérance! This year we’re teaming up to screen a NYC premiere of Shadows Of Spring, a film from L’Espérance’s early career, host a masterclass around his latest feature Fighting Through The Night (RIDM, Berlinale), and to throw a party to celebrate RIDM’s return to UnionDocs.
FULL WEEKEND SCHEDULE with details below!
RIDM x UnionDocs Party!
Friday, July 21 – 9:00PM - 2:00AM
Join us for our welcome RIDM party Friday night at 9PM and get a chance to know more about RIDM, meet the team, hang out in our backyard, enjoy complimentary craft beers courtesy of Le Trou du diable, and Dieu du ciel, and get on the dance floor!
We’ll have complimentary drinks from 10:00-midnight and a DJ Stewey Decimal (Pleasure Jams) spinning music on the dancefloor from midnight-2am.
Masterclass with Sylvain L'Espérance
Saturday, July 22 – 3:00PM - 5:00PM
Approaching Experiments in Form and Politics
Join Montreal-based filmmaker Sylvain L’Espérance for a rare opportunity to explore his work and process with him in NYC! For the past 25 years, L’Espérance has travelled widely, from Quebec to Mali to Greece and has directed nearly a dozen films that combine direct cinema with experimental research to explore reality through a poetic lens. He will discuss his move from working with full crews, to a more independent production method, his experiences as an outsider traveling to document political turmoil, and his practice of using experimental forms to serve political awareness in documentary. He will use his latest feature Fighting Through The Night (RIDM, Berlinale) as a case study to talk about how to establish voice, political intention, and resistance as a filmmaker.
No European director has ever managed such an ambitious project. That is lamentable for several reasons […] L’Esperance transmits in his Fighting through the Night a feeling of how existential the misery of the people really is, how desperate and without hope their situation. He lets those speak who remain on the outside, and that is honorable and moving.”
– Thekla Dannenberg, Perlentaucher
“By taking stock of life and resistance on the political battlefield, Combat au bout de la nuit puts reality back in motion, and does it with rare intensity. A film that commands our admiration.”
– Robert Daudelin, 24 images
Combat au bout de la nuit (Fighting Through the Night) [Selections]
285 min., 2016, Quebec
Filmed over the course of two years, is a long journey to the heart of Greece today. In this country thrown into torment by a totalitarian economy, institutional violence is met with stubborn resistance. Driven by both complementary and dissonant energies, the film is suffused with a desire for freedom and the rebellious power of the people it brings together. Whether they are native Athenians, Syrian or Afghan refugees, cleaning women or unemployed longshoremen, volunteer doctors or the homeless, all these men and women, all their stories, respond to each other and weave unexpected connections. By following the people who are struggling to build a different future, Combat au bout de la nuit leads us to the insight that amidst today’s chaos, a new shared world, its shape still uncertain, is slowly emerging.
Saturday, July 22 – 5:00PM - 6:00PM
Saturday, July 22 — 7:30PM - 9:30PM
Les printemps incertains (Shadows of Spring)
53 min., 1992, Quebec
Emerging from the multiple perspectives of this film, a memory of a neighbourhood is recreated which tells of the fragility of working class habitats. Residents and workers from southwest Montreal recount its tragic history: the immigration and settling of the Irish in the 19th century; the expropriation of Griffintown; the destruction of Goose village; the industrial decline of Pointe-Saint Charles and surroundings.
Saturday, July 22 — 10:00PM - 11:00PM
Stick around after the program to mingle and close out the day with RIDM, UnionDocs, and Sylvain L’Espérance!
Generous support for this weekend provided by the Cultural Services of the Québec Government Office in New York, and RIDM.
Quebec’s only film festival dedicated to documentaries, the Montreal International Documentary Festival (RIDM) presents the best reality-based films, including the works of established directors and new talents alike.
RIDM also offers activities for professionals in the industry in the form of Doc Circuit Montreal, the only bilingual documentary market in North America. Doc Circuit Montreal offers an intensive program of professional workshops, conferences and business meetings that focus on training, sharing of knowledge and encouraging the development of partnerships.
Québec Government Office in New York is Québec’s primary office in the U.S. promotes the interests of Québec in the following sectors: business, investment, government institutions, education, culture and public affairs. Inaugurated in 1940, it serves the Mid Atlantic region, which includes 8 states and the District of Columbia.