IDFA Competition for Mid-Length Documentary

    • set 13 items

    With 13 world premieres, the Mid-Length competition offers a constellation of diverse cinematic styles, defying expectations of the mid-length documentary format. See the jury members here.

    Items in this selection


    • Madeleine Leroyer
    • 2019

    A compelling and empathetic investigative documentary about the passengers of a ship that sank off the Libyan coast during the 2015 refugee crisis. Through a variety of methods, researchers try to discover the identity of the victims.


    • Jalal Vafaei
    • 2019

    A candid self-portrait of a politically engaged Iranian family, showing how drastically their world has changed. The father was once on the side of the Islamic revolution, but has since become a reformist.


    • Ira A. Goryainova
    • 2019

    An intimate essay on the human body, disease and health. Departing from personal experience, filmmaker Ira A. Goryainova explores how we have looked at ourselves and our illnesses over the centuries.


    • Marina Meijer
    • 2019

    A center in Rotterdam helps young men from problematic backgrounds to build a future. Hardened by the past, they struggle to find their way. Intense dialogues in close-up.

    Lady Time

    • Elina Talvensaari
    • 2019

    Filmmaker Elina Talvensaari tries to bring the previous occupant of her home back to life through the possessions she left behind after her lonely death. A fond tribute to an unknown woman who gradually becomes a treasured friend.

    A Long Breath

    • Remi Itani
    • 2019

    In a marginalized neighborhood in Tripoli, Lebanon, Ibrahim struggles with unemployment, the daily threat of war and his own demons. As an expectant father, he dreams of a devout Muslim life, but the appeal of pills, alcohol and gambling is strong.


    • Antón Terni
    • 2019

    Moments in the lives of three blind friends from Uruguay, documented with warmth and humor. They go hiking, camping, swim in the sea and attend rock concerts, all with casual confidence and joie de vivre.


    • Andrea Testa
    • 2019

    In the privacy of treatment rooms at an Argentine public hospital, teenage girls have to make a decision about the new life growing inside them. Conversations with the professionals caring for them reveal complex lives and fragile dreams of the future.


    • Leslie Lagier
    • 2019

    A beautifully styled portrait of the Yukon in Canada’s far northwest. Once, people came here to find freedom and fortune, but years of intensive mining have inflicted immeasurable damage on the landscape.

    The Season When Velvet Antlers Get Ripe

    • Galina Leontieva
    • 2019

    In the Russian Altai Mountains, reindeer herders earn their living from the trade in antlers. Korean customers swear by their medicinal properties. Meanwhile, the herders complain that they lead a life of “slavery” in a declining economy.


    • Pawel Chorzepa
    • 2019

    In this gripping family drama, 18-year-old Marcin, who’s been living in orphanages since the age of 12, returns to his alcoholic father. He feels caught between love and repulsion for a man who is incapable of being a decent dad.

    The Whale from Lorino

    • Maciej Cuske
    • 2019

    A keenly observed portrait of the remote town of Lorino, in the far northeast of Siberia. Endangered whales are still hunted here, due to tradition but mainly out of bitter necessity.

    You Think The Earth Is a Dead Thing

    • Florence Lazar
    • 2019

    The use of pesticides on banana plantations on the Caribbean island of Martinique has polluted large areas of land. Local people counter this toxic crisis by implementing new ways of land use, rooted in traditional local knowledge.