DOC NYC 2012

In this year’s DOC NYC —its third season— the festival runs from November 8-11 and will showcase 61 feature-length documentaries as well as many shorts and panel discussions by leaders in the field of documentary filmmaking. Standouts include opening night’s “Venus and Serena,” a portrait of the tennis stars the Williams sisters; “Iceberg Slim: Portrait of a Pimp,” about the life of the writer who vividly captured street life in the ‘60s; and “The Central Park Five,” the eagerly-awaited film about the controversial Central Park Jogger rape case, co-directed by Ken Burns, which closes out the festival. Go here for more information and a full schedule.

The team behind 2006’s entertaining and thought-provoking documentary The Pervert’s Guide to Cinema have followed up with a new essay doc investigating how films influence our collective beliefs and practices by helping to shape our dreams. The style of “The Pervert’s Guide to Ideology” is exactly like the earlier film: the colorful, heavily-accented Slovenian philosopher and psychoanalyst Slavoj Žižek uses scenes from films to illustrate intellectual arguments; these are punctuated by Slavoj continuing his narration in costumes and sets which pay homage to the films.

Clips from John Carpenter’s 1988 cult film “They Live” are used to explain Marxist philosopher Louis Althusser’s concept of ideological interpolation, in which our subjectivity is addressed (and partially created) by the social structures we inhabit. A drifter has discovered a pair of sunglasses that reveal the hidden instructions behind the surface of everyday life. An ordinary billboard advertisement turns into the text “OBEY” when viewed with the glasses! Read more