Sometimes Truth Is Stranger Than Fiction

By Frako Loden

The tagline for DocFest, the 19th San Francisco Documentary Festival, is “Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction”—a saying we all appreciate more than we’d like during these days of COVID-19, wildfires, racist domestic terrorism and unhinged presidential campaigns. But however much we might want to hide from some of these truths, we still relish a good documentary that tells it like it is—or at least when we’re feeling more fragile, brings back fond memories or confirms our biases. SF DocFest gives you a chance to do all that with 49 new documentaries, easy to watch from home with the website’s clearly worded instructions. Here are ten that you might choose from.

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The Fight…Continues

By C.J. Hirschfield

They ride all forms of public transit, lug around pounds of paper, eat on the run, stay in modest hotels where they practice alone in front of the mirror, and lament all of the time they have to spend away from their families. They are the unsung human rights superheroes, and the new documentary The Fight powerfully– and engagingly–tells not only their stories, but of four major court cases that have the potential to upend our most cherished and hard-fought rights.

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Healing The World One Film at a Time: Black Films Matter

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By Gary Meyer

Celebrate African American cinema and the African cultural Diaspora through a diverse collection of films – from emerging and established filmmakers. The San Francisco Black Film Festival presents movies reinforcing positive images and dispelling negative stereotypes while providing cinema artists from the bay area in particular and around the world in general, a forum for their work to be viewed and discussed.

 

For more than 20 years audiences have gathered to experience these movies but this year the festival has been reinvented as “Virtually, It’s Possible” uploading new movies twice a day through August 2, 2020 on the San Francisco Black Film Festival website.

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JOHN LEWIS: GOOD TROUBLE

by C.J. Hirschfield

At age 79, and after 60 years of activism, John Lewis is still organizing; still mobilizing; still legislating. Oh yes, and he’s definitely still dancing.

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In the illuminating and luminous new documentary, John Lewis: Good Trouble, acclaimed Bay Area director Dawn Porter (Trapped, Gideon’s Army) creatively and conscientiously chronicles the life and career of the legendary civil rights activist and Democratic Congressman from Georgia.

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