© DOK.fest Munich, from Qiang's Journey

DOK.fest 2020

DOK.fest has become a digital festival this year, and the team has managed to pull an entire online film festival out of the bag in record time. It’s the 35th edition of Munich’s documentary film festival, and they’ll be showing 121 festival films, Q&As and live events – all of which can be enjoyed from the comfort of your armchair.

DOK.fest gets underway on 6 May, and from 7 May you can choose to watch any of the films in the festival program at home.

Select the documentary you’d like to watch from the program list here, pay €4.50 (or €5.50 if you’d like to donate a euro to an independent cinema) per film, and get watching. If you’re planning on watching a lot, you can buy an all-in pass for €50. More info is available here.

Here are a few I’m most looking forward to watching:

Qiang’s Journey
After the devastating 2008 Wenchuan earthquake, which caused the death of 70,000 people, the Qiang were forced to relocate from their home in the Tibetan highlands. Tunzi Gao follows the ethnic minority group as they try to find a new home elsewhere. Dealing with the topic of immigration and the idea of ‘home’, Gao’s documentary is a timely piece and it’s first on my list.

Hong Kong Moments
Taking a look at the Hong Kong pro-democracy protests, this fast-paced documentary covers just two days of protests – shown from the perspectives of different people, including politicians with disparate political ideas, a paramedic, and a tea shop owner.

The Unseen
This is the German premiere of this Iranian documentary, which deals with homeless women in the country. Homeless women are banished to the outskirts of Iranian cities, to shelters where they definitely do not get the help they need. Filmmaker Behzad Nalbandi spent five years making the documentary, secretly interviewing women with horrific stories to tell, none of whom appear on screen. Instead, he uses cardboard cut-outs to tell their stories – to give them a face. DOK.fest is also showing Sunless Shadows, another Iranian documentary that focuses on women and their sad fates.

I’m giving away two tickets for a documentary film of your choosing – simply email me (win @ artsinmunich.com) before May 6, 2020, with the name of the documentary you’re most keen on watching – I’ll pick two names at random, and you’ll receive a personalized code to watch the movie of your choice!

Categories Culture


I'm Rachel, the author behind Arts in Munich. I moved to Munich in the summer of 2008, and work as an editor in the city. I also do freelance work for the BBC, MONOCLE, Singapore Airlines and Kaltblut, among others, and previously wrote for the Huffington Post and Electronic Beats.

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