What To See At Hot Docs 2017

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Hot Docs is upon us yet again, and that means it’s time for ten days of exploring the real world through the wonders of cinema. There is no way any one person can see the hundreds of films screening this year, so here’s what you should consider fitting into your schedule throughout the festival. See a list of what to see at Hot Docs 2017 below:

Bill Nye: Science Guy
Full disclosure, I was never a science or math person (shocking thing for a writer to say, I know) but growing up in the 90s–like every other kid–I was fascinated by Bill Nye’s experiments on TV. He was the science teacher we all wish we had, and this documentary sheds light on the nostalgic figure and his current quest to dispel the spread of misinformation from political figures who don’t believe in science and spread fake news in order to keep lining their pockets with cash, while the planet gets warmer and more at risk.

Image: Hot Docs

Bird On A Wire
As a part of Hot Docs retrospective series, take this opportunity to see Tony Palmer’s rare intimate look into Leonard Cohen’s 1972 European tour on the big screen. The recently passed music legend rarely gave the public access to his private world, but this film is the one exception he made.

Image: Hot Docs

78/52
Alfred Hitchcock’s classic shower scene in Psycho is dissected almost 60 years later for the impact it still has on film, especially the horror genre, today. Actors and directors from Elijah Wood to Peter Bogdanovich and Guillermo del Toro among others discuss their love for Hitchcock and the legacy and power this scene still holds today.

 
House of Z
Fashion wunderkind Zac Posen’s too quick rise to success at the tender age of 21 (and just as quick fall) are profiled here with interviews from the man himself and his famous friends. Learn what it takes to rebuild a career in fashion with this all access look into the beloved designer’s world.

Image: Hot Docs

Mommy Dead And Dearest
You may or may not have already read about this fascinating yet terrifying case of matricide via Munchausen syndrome by proxy (pretending your child is ill for sympathy), and this documentary gives us exclusive access to Gypsy Rose, the daughter accused of killing her mother after becoming tired of all that pretending.

Becoming Bond
George Lanzby is the only man to play James Bond on film just once. The strange tale of how that came to be (and then, not be) is almost as fascinating as the man’s life story–having been born with only half a kidney and told he wouldn’t live past age seven.

 
32 Pills: My Sister’s Suicide
In December 2008, successful Manhattan photographer Ruth Litoff took her own life, leaving behind 15 notes and 15 gifts for her closest friends, Here, her sister takes us on her painful journey to understand why Ruth did it.

The CANADALAND Guide To Canada
Hot Docs is doing things a bit differently this year with the addition of programing that is not just on the screen. CANADALAND’s Jesse Brown will take the stage with his touring multidisciplinary celebration of all the weird and fascinating things that make us Canadian, as the country’s 150th birthday approaches.

Image: Hot Docs

Whitney “Can I Be Me”
We all knew a comprehensive documentary would come out eventually after Whitney Houston’s tragic passing, and this is it. Look back at how she got her start in New Jersey, how the record execs marketed her to appeal to white audiences leading to criticisms of not being “black enough”, and how her tumultuous relationship with Bobby Brown led her down a dark path.

Image: Hot Docs

Hell On Earth: The Fall of Syria and the Rise of ISIS
While it can be easy to sit here in North America and look at the headlines and be simultaneously scared of this situation while feeling removed from it, this documentary gives us the chance to understand how we all ended up here. Taking a look at how the western world contributed to the growth of ISIS is something we desperately need to be aware of during a Trump presidency.

RELATED LINK: A Guide to All the Music Festivals Happening in Toronto this Summer

Did we miss any of the must-see films at Hot Docs 2017?  Let Vv Magazine know in the comment section below or tweet us at@ViewtheVibe

Lisa Lagace

Lisa Lagace

Lisa Lagace is a freelance writer, speaker, and the creator of TurntheRecordOver.com, a Toronto lifestyle and culture blog for creative professionals.
Lisa Lagace