The documentary festival DOXS RUHR is exploring the relation between cinema and young audiences. For the second time, young curators are collaborating with the festival, not only through curating film programmes but also creating the right environment and design for those films to be screened.
In 2023 for the first time the curators’ network kino.for you launches an award, honouring one production within the festival’s youth programme. And again the participatory mode rules: The young curators decide about the criterions, the selection and the assigned jury. Together with the ECFA Doc Award, this prize will be presented on 27 October in Bochum.
A collaboration between the festival, scholars and students in the Ruhr area, all aged 16-24 years, has been running successfully for two years and was initiated as a reaction towards the challenges for arthouse cinemas today, especially after the pandemic decline in ticket sales. The idea behind this pilot project is to give as much space and power as possible to the young audience in order to learn with them, what kind of films and cinema environments could attract diverse young viewers. The film selection as well as the screening spaces, the guests and prize policy are totally up to them to decide. In the course of this process, a social media promotion with a strong focus on TikTok was launched. There is one premise though: The range of films to be considered is limited to productions that are not yet easily accessible (e.g. on Netflix, YouTube or through big distributors). Based on the screenings they organised last year within the same project, students of the Ruhr University in Bochum worked out a concept that explains theoretically their understanding of cinema. To be downloaded here (in German).
During the 2023 edition the young network, recruited from the entire Ruhr Region, dedicates a special evening to “self-reflective films” from the cinematographic beginnings to the AI-generated vision on cinema in the future, presenting NEIGHBOUR ABDI (Douwe Dijkstra, the Netherlands – photo above) and HOW IT GOT MY WRINKLES (Claude Delafosse, France), plus LET’S BE BCVFRIENDS (Arno Coenen & Roger Werkhoven, the Netherlands) which questions the boundaries between the real and virtual world. What are the consequences of AI for the art of acting? What does artistic authenticity mean, and how do we recognise it? A second programme focuses on the student revolution in Iraq. BAGHDAD ON FIRE (Karrar Al-Azzawi) is an energetic account from inside the demonstrations, led by a new generation of Iraqis. For this new award productions presented in the school film programme, like the opening film PLANET B (Pieter Van Eecke, Belgium) can be nominated.
The DOXS RUHR festival 2023 will take place in five cities in the Ruhr area and online from 25 October – 5 November.