Nominees for Best Documentary 2020


Director: Tomas Leach

Country: Spain

Duration: 10:00

Synopsis: An intense, intimate and beautiful journey into the mind of Alba, a 16-year-old ballet dancer at the acclaimed Corella Dance Academy in Barcelona. Her inner thoughts start to question the life she is leading, her lost adolescence, and her place in the world.


Director: Ivana Hucikova, Sarah Keeling, Grace Remington

Country: United States

Duration: 15:00

Synopsis: Growing up in the largest affordable housing cooperative in Brooklyn, Cassandra’s world was artfully framed by her mother’s Super-8 camera. Today, Cassandra examines and edits these films, gaining insight into the challenges her mother faced as a creative black woman and the importance of her vision.

Sink or Skim

Director: Austen McCowan, Will Hewitt

Country: United Kingdom

Duration: 30:00

Synopsis: The World Stone Skimming Championships is held of a tiny Scottish Island. Two obsessed skimmers show us what it takes to be the world’s biggest tosser.


Director: Jan Eric Huehn

Country: Dominica

Duration: 15:53

Synopsis: “OMOGENEO” is a short film about an italian family highlighting their unique understanding of life. built around the philosophical thoughts and music of the father davide garattoni, it deals with the balance between the life in society and nature.  When the family first moved to fuerteventura they lived in a tipi close to the beach for about 5 years – in total harmony with nature. then they were forced by the government to find a concrete house within one day otherwise they would have taken away their children. close to majanicho they found a house, allowing them to keep custody of their children.


Director: Inna Tsgoeva

Country: Russian Federation

Duration: 10:53

Synopsis: Victor is alone here. He looks back at his life in order to figure out why he is here. Silence interrupted by the lonely voice of a man pronouncing his own name.

God has already gone ahead (Gott ist schon weg)


Country: Germany

Duration: 10:00

Synopsis: The Egyptian geese marches through the ages: From the bird´s perspective, a centuries-long settlement history is told. While the water level in the pond continues to fall, the inhabitants have the water up the neck. In the end, nothing stays as it was, only the goose suspects nothing bad.

Consumption 101

Director: Orkun Özcan

Country: Turkey

Duration: 15:00

Synopsis: Do we live to consume or consume to live? That’s a question which has yet to be answered. A short documentary which consists of psychological and economical reasons behind the issue throughout history, and with a dynamic perspective.


Director: Jane Dyson, Ross Harrison

Country: Australia

Duration: 18:59

Synopsis: When Saraswati arrives as the first educated daughter-in-law in a Himalayan village, she wonders how she will ever feel at home. But faced with the scepticism of an older generation of women, she grows determined to succeed. As the village’s ten-day Pandav Lila festival approaches, the film offers a window onto the everyday work and spiritual practices that bind people to each other and the land. An intimate story of longing and belonging in India’s sacred mountains, ‘Spirit’ explores what it takes to make a home in a remote community in the thralls of change.

65 Roses

Director: Murat Zherka

Country: Macedonia

Duration: 16:03

Synopsis: The documentary follows the story of a 14 year old from Prishtina, Yllka Leti, who suffers from cystic fibrosis. Yllka has a great talent for art, especially for paintings. This documentary shows her day-to-day life, the obstacles that she has to ovrecome and the battle that she fights as a 14 yearold for her life.

Music Is My Life

Director: Alex Djordjevic

Country: United States

Duration: 25:45

Synopsis: Out of a population of roughly 2,500 Roma people in Vladincin Han (Southeastern Serbia), less than 10 are currently employed.  Even with help from several charitable organizations, this culture of unemployment is slow to improve.  Many of the youth in this community will face a future of collecting recyclables, working odd jobs, or living off social welfare.  While there is a growing emphasis for education among many of the families, music has always played an important role in the community when there was no other way to earn a living.  Children are raised to appreciate music and many seem to be born with a natural ability to perform.  Families who manage to earn income through performing are often able to reach a higher standard of living.   I tried to document the people and places of this region and the role music has played in shaping their communities over the centuries. I was especially interested in how music helped shape the lives of the youth, how and why they were drawn to the instruments they played, and what they hope to achieve in the future.

In the Footsteps of Ghosts

Director: Geraint Rhys

Country: United Kingdom

Duration: 18:18

Synopsis: It is almost 30 years since the Soviet Union came to an end, yet contemporary Russia, and more importantly, contemporary Russian artists are still using this past to fuel their creativity.  One of the leading artists in this movement is Pavel Otdelnov. His works grapple with life growing up in the post-industrial landscapes of Dzerzhinsk, where abandoned chemical factories are numerous and continue to impact the environment which surrounds them.  Through his paintings Pavel explores ideas of loss, nostalgia, family, environmental damage and a deep sense of place.  These works have reverberated throughout Russia and beyond, being included in collections in the State Russian Museum, Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Academy of Arts, Moscow Union of Artists, Kovcheg gallery, Gorbachev Foundation and private collections in Russia, United States, Germany, Italy, Spain, Poland and many other countries.  In the Footsteps of Ghosts takes us into Pavel Otdelnov’s studio in Moscow as he describes to us the inspiration behind many of his works.   Not only is this film an exploration into the mind and work of the artist, but also a deep reflection on the relationship between society and place.’

Bet on Yourself

Director: Harvey Eaton

Country: United Kingdom

Duration: 20:25

Synopsis: John Reeve, an 80 year old entrepreneur who started his life in war-torn England, now lives in the Caribbean as a cruise ship excursion mogul.   John owned an island-themed nightclub in the centre of Coventry, hosting crooners like Dusty Springfield, Liberace and Tom Jones. He intrepidly sailed across the Atlantic with no experience and no motor, has crashed at least three airplanes and two boats, lived with Pygmy Indians, had his skull caved in with a 4ft iron pipe, escaped from a Grenadian revolution, and entered the ’88 Winter Olympics as the US Virgin Islands bobsled team (yes, the same year as the Jamaicans).   Nothing in life has ever stopped John and he is an inspiration for everyone to go out, make mistakes and make a mark on the world.