Cinéma du réel previews 43rd festival

The 43rd edition of Cinéma du réel, held 12 – 21 March 2021, forges ahead with its programme, regardless of the health situation in France at the time of presentation. With fervent hope a physical aspect of the festival will take place, Cinéma du réel is also working on all possible options depending on the rules in place (total or partial lockdown, curfew, or limited access to theatres).

Whatever the final outcome, the festival has announced its official categories and competitions and will also feature special screenings, previews, rarities, first-time screenings, and the Paris DOC, the professional platform. More information on the complete program will be available in the coming days, but below is a preview of what to expect.


  • International selection // around 20 short and feature-length films – as a French premiere
  • French selection // around 20 short and feature-length films – as a world premiere


  • A selection that covers young filmmakers’ first documentary steps, as curated by a selection committee composed of students.


  • Pierre Creton is both a filmmaker and a farmworker. Born in 1966, he lives and works in Vattetot-sur-mer (Seine Maritime). He studied at the Villa Arson (Nice) and Le Havre School of Fine Arts. He is well-known for his films A Beautiful Summer (2019) and Va, Toto! (2017). All of his work is shaped by and around daily gestures and the land as the place and time of his existence as both a filmmaker and farmworker.


  • These directors have chosen nature as a space of life and filmmaking. They turn this everyday setting into the garden of their thoughts, their concerns, the joys or difficulties of living, and the wellspring of their relationship to others. With films by Margaret Tait, Anne Charlotte Robertson, Joachim Pinto, Rose Lowder, and more.

POPULAR FRONT(S): what use are citizens?

  • At the heart of the debates, the idea of democracy, the decisions, and commitment of everyone to help build society and drive its transformation. This year’s programme focuses on our role as citizen – the role we agree to assume and the role we could seize. It questions how direct actions can influence the decisions of those who go- vern us, in order to defy fatalism and celebrate possible victories.


  • An exploration of the relationship between literature and documentary cinema. Buil- ding on the words of practitioners – those who make, those who create – this in- volves not only exploring the fictional vein of documentary writing, but also the way in which writing associates careful observation with a subjective point of view and opens itself up to the existence of others.
Modern Times Review
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