TIFF ’19: Doc trailer round-up, part two

As we approach the opening of the 44th Toronto International Film Festival, which runs Sept. 5 to 15, Realscreen has compiled every available trailer and clip for this year’s doc ...
September 4, 2019

As we approach the opening of the 44th Toronto International Film Festival, which runs Sept. 5 to 15, Realscreen has compiled every available trailer and clip for this year’s doc lineup.

The festival’s picks comprise of 25 non-fiction works covering artistic achievement, journalism, immigration and global politics, among other themes, with 36% of the films directed by women.

Today’s selection includes the latest film from the legendary Abenaki filmmaker Alanis Obomsawin, Jordan River Anderson, The Messenger, which follows the long struggle for Indigenous people to access funding under Jordan’s Principle; Up the Yangtze-director Yung Chang‘s exploration of journalism through the figure of Robert Fisk in This Is Not a Movie; and Karim Sayad’s observational documentary My English Cousin (pictured), which follows the life of his cousin, Fahed, as he contemplates a return to his homeland.

The trailers follow below, with synopses provided by TIFF. Read part one of our trailer round-up here.

Ibrahim: A Fate to Define
Lina Al Abed
Lebanon, Palestine, Denmark, Qatar, Slovenia; North American Premiere; 75 minutes

In this provocative and personal documentary, director Lina Al Abed searches for traces of her disappeared father: a seemingly ordinary Palestinian family man who was actually a secret member of a militant splinter faction and vanished when she was just a child.

Jordan River Anderson, The Messenger
Alanis Obomsawin
Canada; World Premiere; 65 minutes

Alanis Obomsawin’s remarkable 53rd film documents the story of a young boy forced to spend all five years of his short life in hospital while the federal and provincial governments argued over which was responsible for his care, as well as the long struggle of Indigenous activists to force the Canadian government to enforce “Jordan’s Principle” the promise that no First Nations children would experience inequitable access to government-funded services again.

My English Cousin
Karim Sayad
Switzerland, Qatar; World Premiere; 82 minutes

This keenly observed documentary by Karim Sayad follows the director’s cousin, Fahed, who left Algeria for England in 2001 and, now, contemplates returning to his place of birth.

Paris Stalingrad
Hind Meddeb
France; International Premiere; 86 minutes

Documentarian Hind Meddeb takes her camera through the streets of the French capital’s Stalingrad district and meets many of the refugees struggling to make a home for themselves there, in this eye-opening exploration of the perils and perseverance that shape the migrant experience.

The Australian Dream
Daniel Gordon
Australia, United Kingdom; Canadian Premiere; 106 minutes

Daniel Gordon’s new film is a portrait of the struggles and triumphs of Australian footballer Adam Goodes — a hero on and off the field, as both a decorated sportsman and an Indigenous-rights activist.

This Is Not a Movie
Yung Chang
Canada, Germany; World Premiere; 106 minutes

The groundbreaking and often game-changing reporting of legendary foreign correspondent and author Robert Fisk is profiled in the latest from acclaimed documentarian Yung Chang.

About The Author
Jillian Morgan is a special reports editor at realscreen with a background in journalism and digital marketing. She joined the publication in 2019 after serving as the assistant editor to trade publications HPAC and On-Site. With a bachelor of journalism from the University of King's College in Halifax, she also works as a freelance writer and fact-checker.