A whole new world in DocLisboa

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Lisbon offer a lot of film festivals during the year, two of the largest I’ve already talked about in previous articles, IndieLisboa and MOTELx, dedicated in independent filmmaking and horror films respectively. In this article I’m going to introduce the third large Lisbon film festival, where documentaries take center stage: DocLisboa! A festival that challenges you to see the world through different perspectives and ideologies, and reflect on that experience, taking place in venues all around Lisbon!

This animation for DocLisboa 2016 was made by me, animator Rui Gonçalves and animator/fellow editor Vasco Casula, during our last year at the University of Fine Arts (Lisbon).

National/International Competitions

Like the other festivals, DocLisboa boasts two important competitive categories, a national and an international competition. These sessions embody the ideia of diversity, with over 30 films and 20 countries making a presence in these two categories, some film are even having their worldwide premiere in DocLisboa. It’s like a unique trip around the world, shinning a light on certain events you might not have heard of. Another competition present in this festival is Doc Alliance (part of a project by the same name that DocLisboa is a part of).

Komodo Dragons, Michał Borczuch, Poland (2018)

Mood Keep, Alice dos Reis, Portugal/Netherlands (2018)

Directors and Discussions

DocLisboa is a festival that calls for debates and discussions, either being between you and your friends/other viewers, or with the directors themselves. The festival invites a lot of directors to present their films, like in Retrospective sessions, or in categories like New Visions, where experimentation and discussion is the focus, and many directors are invited to debate with the audience about their movies. And lastly, in this theme there is Focus, sessions of films focused on a specific theme (that changes every year), normally something very pertinent yet unknown, and Cinema of Urgency where the films touch on contemporary subjects that need an urgent and informed discussion.

Edvard Munch, Peter Watkins, Norway/Sweden (1973)

Youth, Music and the Modern World

The last categories I want to mention are the ones I myself identify with a lot. Heart Beat is a category dedicated to musicians and the music industry, showing the backstage, the life, the process and the hardships of many famous (and not so famous) artists, a reality check on what most of the times seems like a fantastical life. From the Earth to the Moon sessions are a reflection on modern life, gazing on the world of tomorrow by questioning some aspects of today’s world. And lastly Green Years, where young directors show their skill in an always refreshing category.

Junun, Paul Thomas Anderson, India (2015)


DocLisboa also has some extra activities, like education projects for children and workshops and projects for adults interested on filmmaking, meetings with directos, and, of course, parties! Called the Doc♥Beat Parties! Be sure to check the website and see the sessions and events that interest you the most!

Culturgest (Lisbon)
Culturgest (Lisbon)
R. Arco do Cego 77, 1000-020 Lisboa, Portugal
Cinema São Jorge
Cinema São Jorge
Av. da Liberdade 175, 1250-096 Lisboa, Portugal
Cinemateca Portuguesa - Museu do Cinema
Cinemateca Portuguesa - Museu do Cinema
R. Barata Salgueiro 39, 1250-195 Lisboa, Portugal
Cinema Ideal
Cinema Ideal
Rua do Loreto 15, 1200-241 Lisboa, Portugal

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The author

André Jesus

André Jesus

I am André, from Portugal. I grew up in the south, but I live in Lisbon. Whenever I can, I go out and experience whatever Portugal has to offer. And I'm here to share those experiences!

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