7 Must-See Films at This Year’s DOC NYC Festival

7 Must-See Films at This Year’s DOC NYC Festival

DOC NYC kicks off next week with a wide-ranging program that offers more than 300 films and events, including 135 full-length documentaries. The robust lineup features 42 world premieres and 17 US premieres, as well as talks with Rashida Jones, Wim Wenders, Jeffrey Wright, Michael Moore, Sandra Lee, Christo, J. Cole and Lizz Winstead, among others. Now in its ninth year, the festival runs Nov. 8-15 with screenings at the IFC Center, SVA Theatre and Cinépolis Chelsea.

Here, a selection of films that we’re particularly excited about:

New York newspaper columnists Pete Hamill (left) and Jimmy Breslin are the subject of Jonathan Alter, John Block and Steve McCarthy’s “Breslin and Hamill: Deadline Artists.”

“Breslin and Hamill: Deadline Artists”
Directed by Jonathan Alter, John Block and Steve McCarthy
A portrait of the legendary New York City newspaper columnists Jimmy Breslin and Pete Hamill, whose passionate commentary and diligent reporting in the New York Post and the New York Daily News had a significant impact on journalism in the late 20th century.

A still from Stephen Maing’s “Crime + Punishment.” Pictured: Officer Edwin Raymond. Photo by Mud Horse Pictures/Hulu.

“Crime + Punishment”
Directed by Stephen Maing
Twelve police officers put their careers and personal safety on the line to expose illegal practices in the NYPD, including the targeting of minority youth to meet internally mandated quotas and the retaliation they faced for speaking out against the policy.

Nobel Prize-winning activist Nadia Murad in Alexandria Bombach’s “On Her Shoulders.”

“On Her Shoulders”
Directed by Alexandria Bombach
Bombach follows 23-year-old Nobel Prize-winning activist Nadia Murad, who was kidnapped and held as a sex slave by ISIS following the 2014 genocide and widespread rape committed against the religious minority Yazidis in Northern Iraq. Murad, who managed to escape, tells her story to Western reporters, politicians and the United Nations in order to bring awareness to the horrific crimes committed against her community.

A still from Bing Liu’s “Minding the Gap.” Photo by Hulu.

“Minding the Gap”
Directed by Bing Liu
Three boys who struggle at home build a tight-knit community through skateboarding in a small blue-collar Illinois town. Liu filmed his two friends over the course of 10 years, documenting their ups and downs, fraught relationships with family and love of skateboarding.

Image from Rudy Valdez’s “The Sentence.”

“The Sentence”
Directed by Rudy Valdez
A draconian court ruling is the central subject of this documentary, which tells the story of the filmmaker’s sister, Cindy, a mother of three young girls who was sentenced to 15 years in prison on charges of conspiracy for drug-related crimes committed by an ex-boyfriend whom she had left years prior to the sentencing.

Still from Annie Sundberg and Ricki Stern’s “Reversing Roe.”

“Reversing Roe”
Directed by Annie Sundberg and Ricki Stern
Sundberg and Stern refer to archival and contemporary footage, news reports and interviews to examine the legacy of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision, and the political and cultural climate surrounding abortion rights in the United States today.

Image from Tim Wardle’s “Three Identical Strangers.”

“Three Identical Strangers”
Directed by Tim Wardle
Triplet brothers who were separated at birth in the early 1960s are reunited at age 19 through completely coincidental circumstances, setting off a media frenzy. Wardle tells their story and digs into the disturbing truth behind their separation.

Top Image: A still from Stephen Maing's "Crime + Punishment." Pictured: Officer Edwin Raymond. Photo by Mud Horse Pictures/Hulu.