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Festival Family Programming

Introduce your budding doc enthusiasts to these great films during the 2019 Hot Docs Festival.

Screenings with closed captions (CC), open captions (OC) and described sound (DS) are indicated below. Vist our accessibility page for more info.


ALL AGES


IMAX Screenings at Ontario Place Cinesphere
Hot Docs pays tribute to renowned Canadian IMAX creators Toni Myers and Jonathan Barker with these special screenings. FREE

FLIGHT OF THE BUTTERFLIES 3D
D: Mike Slee | P: Jonathan Barker | 2012 | Canada | G
Scientific advenutre meets detective story meets natural history epic in the compelling journey of the monarch butterfly—a perilous year-long migration from Mexico, across the US to Canada, exquisitely captured in beautiful IMAX cinematography.

HUBBLE 3D
D: Toni Myers | 2010 | Canada | G
May 2009: NASA astronauts embark on a mission to perform maintenance and repairs to the Hubble Space Telescope. As they go about their tasks in this celestial workplace, the danger and beauty surrounding them are breathtakingly captured.

SAT, MAY 4, 1:30 PM | Cinesphere at Ontario Place

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BUDDY
D: Heddy Honigmann | Netherlands | 86 min | PG
Master documentarian Heddy Honigmann turns her eye for authenticity and genuine interview to the complex relationships between service dogs and their owners. Witness canine humanity and life-altering trust at work in this observational marvel.

FRI, APR 26, 3:15 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 1
SAT, APR 27, 3:00 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre
TUE, APR 30, 10:30 AM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 3

DETAILS & TICKETS

DRAG KIDS
D: Megan Wennberg | Canada | 80 min | G
Four precocious preteens perfect their lip synching and runway walks in anticipation of the biggest drag performance of their lives at Montreal Pride, in this fierce and joyous celebration of acceptance and self-discovery.

SUN, APR 28, 6:15 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 1 (CC)
TUE, APR 30, 1:15 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 3 (CC)
FRI, MAY 3, 3:45 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 1 (OC)

DETAILS & TICKETS

KIFARU
D: David Hambridge | USA, Kenya | 79 min | PG
This emotionally devastating up-close account of extinction tracks the final years of the world’s last male northern white rhino, which unfold under the eyes of the dedicated Kenyan rangers who care for and protect him until the very end.

SAT, APR 27, 8:30 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre
SUN, APR 28, 10:00 AM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 1
FRI, MAY 3, 4:00 PM | Fox Theatre

DETAILS & TICKETS

KNOCK DOWN THE HOUSE
D: Rachel Lears | USA | 85 min | PG
This rollercoaster ride follows four progressive women—including Bronx bartender Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez—behind the scenes and in the streets as they grind through long-shot grassroots campaigns for Congress during the 2018 US midterms.

SUN, APR 28, 6:15 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre
MON, APR 29, 4:00 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre
FRI, MAY 3, 6:30 PM | Fox Theatre
SAT, MAY 4, 1:00 PM | Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema

DETAILS & TICKETS

MOONLIGHT SONATA: DEAFNESS IN THREE MOVEMENTS
D: Irene Taylor Brodsky | USA | 90 min | PG
The filmmaker ushers us through a poignant memoir of her deaf son growing up and her deaf father facing his twilight years, scored by the melancholy notes of Beethoven’s iconic sonata, written when the composer’s own hearing began to fail.

MON, APR 29, 9:00 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre (CC)
TUE, APR 30, 3:00 PM | Scotiabank Theatre Toronto (DS)(OC)
FRI, MAY 3, 9:00 PM | Fox Theatre (CC)

DETAILS & TICKETS

PICTURE CHARACTER
D: Ian Cheney, Martha Shane | USA | 84 min | G
Explore the evolution of emojis, the colourful and creative pictorial language that surged from a simple set of icons to a swiftly evolving linguistic phenomenon that is reshaping how we communicate.

TUE, APR 30, 9:30 PM | Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema
THU, MAY 2, 6:30 PM | Hart House Theatre
SAT, MAY 4, 9:15 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre
SUN, MAY 5, 10:30 AM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 1

DETAILS & TICKETS

PIPE DREAMS
D: Stacey Tenenbaum | Canada | 78 min | G
Converging on Montreal for the prestigious Canadian International Organ Competition, five talented young musicians from around the globe face off to master “the king of instruments,” with their determination proving to be as moving as their artistry and skill. Screening with That’s My Jazz.

SUN, APR 28, 3:15 PM | Scotiabank Theatre Toronto 4 (CC)
TUE, APR 30, 9:00 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 3 (CC)
FRI, MAY 3, 10:00 AM | Isabel Bader Theatre (CC)

DETAILS & TICKETS

THE SEER AND THE UNSEEN
D: Sara Dosa | USA | 88 min | G
One of Iceland’s most respected seers—thought to be able to communicate with the elvish realm—becomes a frontline ecological activist against development that threatens to devastate the countryside and the elves’ sacred homelands.

SUN, APR 28, 3:45 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 2
MON, APR 29, 7:00 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 4
SUN, MAY 5, 6:45 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 2

DETAILS & TICKETS

SUPREME LAW
D: Katerina Cizek | Canada | 90 min | Not rated
This live event hosted by comedian Jus Reign takes a uniquely interactive and satirical approach to the story of how the Canadian Constitution came to be, with the help of some of the country’s biggest YouTube personalities and content creators.

THU, MAY 2, 6:30 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre

DETAILS & TICKETS

WELL GROOMED
D: Rebecca Stern | USA | 87 min | G
Move over, Westminster Kennel; there’s a more colourful dog show in town. Creative groomers—those who dye and sculpt dog fur into kaleidoscopic shades and shapes—face off in an irresistibly over-the-top contest circuit that will leave you howling.

THU, APR 25, 8:00 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 1 (CC)(DS)
FRI, APR 26, 12:45 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre (CC)
SAT, MAY 4, 10:15 AM | Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema (DS)(OC)

DETAILS & TICKETS

WILLIE
D: Laurence Mathieu-Leger | USA, Canada | 89 min | G
In the midst of the American civil rights movement, Willie O’Ree became the first Black player to skate in the NHL. An inspiration to many, the remarkable story of this recent Hall of Fame inductee’s courage and resilience transcends the sport.

MON, APR 29, 6:30 PM | Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema (CC)(DS) - Big Ideas Series
TUE, APR 30, 4:30 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 1 (DS)(OC)
FRI, MAY 3, 10:15 AM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 1 (CC)(DS)

DETAILS & TICKETS



TEENS & UP


AFTER PARKLAND
D: Jake Lefferman, Emily Taguchi | USA | 92 min | 14A
This devastating chronicle meets with students and families in the aftermath of the 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School as they reckon with unthinkable loss and search for new meaning.

THU, MAY 2, 6:00 PM | Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema
SAT, MAY 4, 4:15 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 1

DETAILS & TICKETS

BELLINGCAT – TRUTH IN A POST-TRUTH WORLD
D: Hans Pool | Netherlands | 88 min | PG
As governments grow unreliable and traditional news sources decline in relevance and reach, follow a vigilante investigative journalist collective that uses cutting-edge tech and crowd-sourcing to expose the truth behind the stories flooding our news-feeds.

TUE, APR 30, 9:15 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre
WED, MAY 1, 1:00 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre
FRI, MAY 3, 9:30 PM | Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema

DETAILS & TICKETS

BUTTERFLY
D: Alessandro Cassigoli, Casey Kauffman | Italy | 80 min | PG
Surviving a broken home on the roughest streets of Naples, an 18-year-old girl spectacularly rises to become Italy’s first female Olympic boxer. But when the spotlight fades after the 2016 Rio Games, is she strong enough to fight for herself?

MON, APR 29, 9:45 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 4
WED, MAY 1, 3:30 PM | Scotiabank Theatre Toronto 4
SUN, MAY 5, 10:00 AM | Scotiabank Theatre Toronto 13

DETAILS & TICKETS

DOCX AT AUTODESK (Ages 13+)
DocX is an interdisciplinary section of the Festival celebrating documentary work that lives outside the traditional format. This year, there are a number of virtual reality and interactive experiences available at Autodesk Technology Centre. FREE

DETAILS

GROWING UP FEMALE
D: Julia Reichert, Jim Klein | USA | 1971 | 50 min | PG
Considered to be the first film of the modern US women’s movement, this landmark doc first screened to controversy and exhilaration, profiling a diverse group of six girls and women on what it means to come of age in America. Screening with Sparkle.

SAT, MAY 4, 12:45 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 3

DETAILS & TICKETS

IN MY BLOOD IT RUNS
D: Maya Newell | Collaborating Directors: Dujuan Hoosan, Carol Turner, Megan Hoosan, James Mawson, Margaret Anderson | Australia | 84 min | 14A
Considered a promising leader by his elders but a failing student by his westernized school teachers, an Aboriginal boy in central Australia must straddle two worlds, coming of age in the midst of a larger cultural battle between colonizers and colonized.

FRI, APR 26, 6:15 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 2
SUN, APR 28, 12:30 PM | Scotiabank Theatre Toronto 4
SAT, MAY 4, 6:15 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 3

DETAILS & TICKETS

INGA CAN HEAR
D: Kaspars Goba | Latvia | 61 min | G
For a teenage girl living in the remote Latvian countryside, being the only hearing member of her family is both a gift and curse. When she shakes off responsibility and leaves home, she discovers more about herself than many bargained for. Screening with Summerloch.

TUE, APR 30, 6:45 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 4
THU, MAY 2, 3:00 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 4

DETAILS & TICKETS

KHARTOUM OFFSIDE
D: Marwa Zein | Sudan, Denmark, Norway, France | 75 min | 14A
Fighting for their right to play soccer and one day compete at the FIFA Women’s World Cup, a team of fearless Sudanese heroines clash with tradition, politics and religion on the field of their dreams.

FRI, APR 26, 5:30 PM | Scotiabank Theatre Toronto 8
SAT, APR 27, 10:45 AM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 4
SUN, MAY 5, 8:15 PM | Aga Khan Museum

DETAILS & TICKETS

LAST BREATH
D: Alex Parkinson, Richard da Costa | UK, Sweden | 86 min | PG
When a commercial diver is stranded hundreds of feet underwater with only five minutes of oxygen, his crew launches an eleventh-hour rescue mission in a ferocious storm. Told with incredible underwater access, this suspenseful story stares death in the face.

MON, APR 29, 6:45 PM | Hart House Theatre (CC)
TUE, APR 30, 3:30 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 2 (CC)(DS)
SUN, MAY 5, 8:45 PM | Scotiabank Theatre Toronto 3 (DS)(OC)

DETAILS & TICKETS

MIDNIGHT TRAVELER
D: Hassan Fazili | USA, Qatar, UK, Canada | 87 min | PG
When the Taliban puts a bounty on an Afghan director’s head, he captures on camera his family’s uncertain and dangerous quest for asylum in this account of the love shared between a family on the run.

SUN, APR 28, 9:00 PM | Scotiabank Theatre Toronto 4
MON, APR 29, 2:30 PM | Scotiabank Theatre Toronto 3
SUN, MAY 5, 12:30 PM | Aga Khan Museum

DETAILS & TICKETS

MR. TOILET: THE WORLD’S #2 MAN
D: Lily Zepeda | USA | 87 min | 14A
An eccentric, passionate entrepreneur becomes an unlikely hero on a high-stakes mission: solving the dire global sanitation crisis. When his project to secure six million toilets for India is jeopardized, hundreds of thousands of lives hang in the balance.

SAT, APR 27, 5:45 PM | Scotiabank Theatre Toronto 3
SUN, APR 28, 1:00 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre
SAT, MAY 4, 8:30 PM | Fox Theatre

DETAILS & TICKETS

MY DADS, MY MOMS AND ME
D: Julia Ivanova | Canada | 2019 | 85 min | G
Twelve years ago, Julia Ivanova captured the plight of four gay men confronting homophobic social censure to raise babies. Now, weaving in joyful scenes from her original film, she returns to see how these brave new families are faring. Screening with Take Me to Prom.

WED, MAY 1, 7:00 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 3
SAT, MAY 4, 10:00 AM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 3

DETAILS & TICKETS

PROPAGANDA: THE ART OF SELLING LIES
D: Larry Weinstein | Canada, Germany | 90 min | G
Artists Kent Monkman, Shepard Fairey and Ai Weiwei highlight this cautionary tale about the power of persuasion. As the roots of indoctrination are traced from cave drawings through to presidential tweets, potent lies have never been better disguised.

DETAILS & TICKETS

QUIET STORM: THE RON ARTEST STORY
D: Johnny Sweet | USA | 116 min | PG
Following an infamous on-court brawl, Ron Artest became the most maligned athlete in sports. This distinctly American biography follows him from his childhood in Queens to his turbulent NBA years to his reinvention as inspiring mental health advocate Metta World Peace.

SUN, APR 28, 5:30 PM | Scotiabank Theatre Toronto 3 (CC)
MON, APR 29, 10:15 AM | Isabel Bader Theatre (CC)
SUN, MAY 5, 10:30 AM | Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema (OC)

DETAILS & TICKETS

THE REST
D: Ai Weiwei | Germany | 78 min | 14A
From Chinese artist and political activist Ai Weiwei comes a powerful work that follows the daily lives of refugees in Europe as they hang in limbo between a disintegrating humanitarian aid system and intensifying nationalism.

FRI, APR 26, 6:30 PM | Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema - Big Ideas Screening
SAT, APR 27, 12:45 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre
SUN, MAY 5, 9:30 PM | Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema**

DETAILS & TICKETS

SEA OF SHADOWS
D: Richard Ladkani | Austria | 104 min | PG
While harvesting a rare fish in the Gulf of California, reckless poachers are also pushing the world’s most elusive whale to extinction. Follow activists and undercover agents as they fight Mexican cartels and Chinese mafia in a heart-pounding race against greed.

SUN, APR 28, 9:00 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre
MON, APR 29, 12:00 PM | Hart House Theatre
SAT, MAY 4, 5:30 PM | Fox Theatre

DETAILS & TICKETS

WHEN WE WALK
D: Jason DaSilva | USA, Canada | 79 min | PG
Recently divorced, the filmmaker attempts to relocate closer to his young son, but confronts the harsh inequity of the US Medicaid system, which would prevent him from accessing the care he needs to live while battling advanced multiple sclerosis.

MON, APR 29, 6:30 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre (OC)
TUE, APR 30, 12:45 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre (CC)
FRI, MAY 3, 12:45 PM | Isabel Bader Theatre (CC)

DETAILS & TICKETS

WHO LET THE DOGS OUT
D: Brent Hodge | Canada | 60 min | G
The catchy hook of Baha Men’s 2000 hit single asks an age-old question, and this hilariously earnest doc asks many more, taking a wild ride through eight years of a man’s runaway obsession with the song and its much-disputed origins. Screening with Life in Miniature and Memory Video.

THU, MAY 2, 9:30 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 1 (CC)
FRI, MAY 3, 6:30 PM | Hart House Theatre (CC)
SUN, MAY 5, 9:30 PM | TIFF Bell Lightbox 2 (OC)

DETAILS & TICKETS

WU-TANG CLAN: OF MICS AND MEN
D: Sacha Jenkins | USA | 90 min | 14A
Through revealing, candid interviews and neverbefore-seen footage, get to know one of the most influential hip-hop groups of all time in the first two episodes of this upcoming Showtime docu-series.

FRI, MAY 3, 6:30 PM | Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema
SAT, MAY 4, 7:30 PM | Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema

DETAILS & TICKETS

Supported by the Government of Ontario and the Ontario Cultural Attractions Fund.

IMAX Screenings at Ontario Place Cinesphere presented in partnership with Ontario Place Corporation, an agency of the Government of Ontario.

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Presenting Platinum Partner

  • logo Scotia Wealth Management

Signature Partner

  • logo CBC Docs

Presenting Partners

  • Logo Crave 2019
  • logo Netflix
  • logo Rogers

Major Supporters

  • logo Celebrate-Ontario
  • logo telefilm

Official Airline Partner

  • logo Delta Web