From an artist who paints with dirt to the story of craft chocolate, Docutah announces 2019 films

Cropped promotional poster for the 2019 Docutah International Film Festival, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Dixie State University’s 10th Docutah International Documentary Film Festival announced its 2019 lineup of 65 films — 45 features and 20 shorts from 30 countries.

The festival runs Sept. 2-7, with the main festival hub at the Docutah Red Cliffs Theaters and the Dixie State University Eccles Fine Arts Center.

According to a press release from DocUtah, the film “A Town for All Seasons: The Story of Leeds” will launch the festival this year on Sept. 2 with a wine and appetizer reception and screening at Eccles Fine Arts Center.

Information on all films and festival special events can be found online.

“This year we celebrate the DOCUTAH DECADE, ten years of bringing world class documentary films in Southern Utah,” said Phil Tuckett, professor of digital film at DSU and executive director of the Docutah International Documentary Film Festival.

Tuckett said the festival experience is “unique – one you can’t have sitting on a couch watching Netflix or even in a standard movie theater.”

It is an immersive, collective experience involving filmmakers, audience and community. Attendees will see films often shown nowhere else and enjoy special events, linked directly to the subjects of the films.

This year’s selections cover a wide range of subjects, the press release said, but all of them connect attendees to a broader understanding of the common human experience.

Attendees can choose from a wide array of topics — an artist who paints with dirt, the redemptive journey of a star hockey player, how Hollywood covered WWII, the story of craft chocolate, a Sudanese refugee runner fighting to compete in the Olympics, Frank Sinatra in Palm Springs and making kaleidoscopes in Seattle’s Pike Street market.

Promotional poster for the 2019 Docutah International Film Festival, St. George News

The A-Z lists of features and shorts can be found on the Docutah website.

Special events planned for the festival include a free community drive-in movie; a chocolate, wine and olive oil tasting; live music played by the musicians featured in their films; and an extravaganza at the O.C. Tanner Amphitheater.

At the special O.C. Tanner event, Docutah will present “Laurel Canyon in Zion Canyon” with a screening of “Echo in the Canyon,” which celebrates the explosion of popular music that came out of Los Angeles’ Laurel Canyon in the mid-1960s as folk music went electric and The Byrds, The Beach Boys, Buffalo Springfield and The Mamas and the Papas gave birth to the California Sound.

The evening begins with a California folk-rock band concert.

Docutah audiences also can interact directly with filmmakers through post-screening question and answer sessions as well as daily DOCtalk events — intimate conversations which bring together these accomplished artists, allowing attendees and budding filmmakers to hear their thoughts on the joys, pitfalls, struggles and successes when tackling documentary filmmaking.

During these talks, attendees can ask questions and get advice on the business of filmmaking from those who have “been there, done that.”

Full information about all the films included in this year’s Docutah festival, special events, schedule and ticketing may be found here. Handouts for the festival with information will be available in mid-August.

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