By Gregory Crofton
In its 14th year, DOC NYC continues as the largest nonfiction film festival in the country with more than 105 feature-length movies set to screen theatrically and streaming from Nov. 8-26.
What sets this festival apart from others is its online viewing portal, something first offered during the pandemic. But even as COVID-19 has eased, this “hybrid” festival model continues to add value to DOC NYC. Via the DOC NYC app, you can stream these films to your television.
HOW TO COME ALIVE WITH NORMAN MAILER
This doc does justice to the chaotic but productive life of Normal Mailer, acclaimed author of “The Executioner’s Song,” “The Naked and the Dead,” “Marilyn Monroe: A Biography,” and many other nonfiction novels. At its heart, and well-communicated by the film, are Mailer’s philosophies on how to live the best life you can — i.e. never feel sorry for yourself! Soundtrack can be relentless and detracts at times. Still lands well with lots of great archival clips and worth the watch. (102 minutes, directed by Jeff Zimbalist) Get DOC NYC tickets here.
THE TRIALS OF ALAN DERSHOWITZ
Director John Curtin dives into the packed life of famed Harvard professor and defense attorney Alan Dershowitz. Taut and interesting, it’s two-hour runtime flies by. Curtin’s doc includes Dershowitz’s entanglement with sex trafficker Jeffrey Epstein, which resulted in a lawsuit being filed against Dershowitz by one of Epstein’s victims. Dershowitz and his wife describe the ordeal as one of the toughest moments of his life. The film motors its way through many infamous criminal cases Dershowitz has worked on including his successful appeal of the murder conviction of Claus von Bülow, and a his unsuccessful maneuverings to defend Mike Tyson of rape charges, one of the biggest disappointments of his professional career. Get DOC NYC tickets here.
THE LADY BIRD DIARIES
A 100-minute archival documentary about the view and impact Claudia “Lady Bird” Johnson had on American history as well as the influence she held over her husband President Lyndon B. Johnson, who served in the office between 1963-1969. Directed by Dawn Porter, this doc premieres on HULU on Nov. 14. Check out the trailer here. Get DOC NYC tickets for the film here.