A curated series of exceptional documentaries, Depot Docs brings groundbreaking films, and the people who make them, to the Hudson Valley. With filmmakers in attendance to field your questions, each screening is like a personal film festival.
This is home
Jan. 11, 7:30 p.m.
THIS IS HOME is an intimate portrait of four Syrian refugee families arriving in America and struggling to find their footing. Displaced from their homes and separated from loved ones, they are given eight months of assistance from the International Rescue Committee to become self-sufficient. As they learn to adapt to challenges, including the newly imposed travel ban, their strength and resilience are tested. It is a universal story, highlighted by humor and heartbreak, about what it’s like to start over, no matter the obstacles.
Nov. 16, 7:30 p.m.
At the age of 85, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has developed a lengthy legal legacy while becoming an unexpected pop culture icon. But the unique personal journey of her rise to the nation's highest court has been largely unknown, even to some of her biggest fans until now. RBG explores Ginsburg's life and career.
Meeting RBG in person is a powerful experience. Her voice is soft, but her words are so clear and carefully chosen that you find yourself drawing closer, riveted. After Donald Trump’s election, the most frequent reaction we got when we told people about the film was, How is her health? Is she OK? We want audiences to see for themselves the Notorious RBG in action staying up late into the night crafting blistering dissents and doing the planks, squats and push-ups that keep her in shape to do the job she loves.
From Betsy West and Julie Cohen, and co-produced by Storyville Films and CNN Films.
Special guest: Director Tina Brown
Off the radar of mainstream American culture, the African-American roller-rink community has thrived for decades in cities across the country, fostering community, hosting performances by groundbreaking hip-hop artists including N.W.A. and Queen Latifah, and serving as the incubator for a radical blend of skating and dance that stands is its own unique art form, complete with regional variations. Despite this remarkable history, skating is in a precarious state; re-zoning policies have led to rinks closing down, and the long-standing, still-present practice of admission policies have, historically, restricted attendance to racially-coded Adult Nights and even discouraged or barred black patrons entirely. Its to this present reality that directors Dyana Winkler and Tina Brown turn their cameras. United Skates visits black rink owners and observes skaters from Los Angeles, Chicago, North Carolina, and beyond as they travel across the United States, introduce their kids to the art, muse on its past and future, and,most importantly, skate. This electrifying work is at once a cultural history lesson, an investigation into racial politics, and a beautifully shot performance film.
One October is a lyrical time capsule that offers a window into the shifting heart of New York City. Filmed entirely in October of 2008, a time when gentrification is rapidly displacing the working and middle classes, Wall Street is plummeting, and Sen. Obama is making his first presidential bid, the story begins with Clay Pigeon, an intrepid radio host who takes to the streets of New York City to talk to everyday citizens who are facing the uncertainty of change.
Nuanced, cinematic, and often humorous, One October charts the chasm between one's desires and one's means, explores the urgent need to conserve the old amid the glorification of the new, and affirms the notion that a varied streetscape is essential to the health of a dynamic metropolis. Seen from our current vantage point, the film is also a remarkable time capsule that foreshadows the roiling political upheaval spreading across the country today.
Special guest: Director Rachel Shuman
An inconvenient sequel
A decade after An Inconvenient Truth brought the climate crisis into the heart of popular culture, comes the riveting and rousing follow-up that shows just how close we are to a real energy revolution. Former Vice President Al Gore continues his tireless fight, traveling around the world training an army of climate champions and influencing international climate policy.
Cameras follow him behind the scenes—in moments both private and public, funny and poignant—as he pursues the inspirational idea that while the stakes have never been higher, the perils of climate change can be overcome with human ingenuity and passion.
Special guest: Editor Don Bernier
STEP is the true-life story of a girls' high-school step team, set against the gritty streets of inner-city Baltimore. Calling themselves the Lethal Ladies of the Baltimore Leadership School for Young Ladies, these inspiring dancers learn to laugh, love and thrive - on and off the stage - even when the world seems to work against them. Empowered by their teachers, teammates, counselors, coaches, and families, they chase their ultimate dream: to win a step championship and to be accepted into college.
Special guest: Editor Penelope Falk
Long Strange Trip
The untold story of the Grateful Dead
A fascinating, revealing and exhilarating look at America's weirdest, wildest and greatest band, the Grateful Dead. Presented at the Depot over two nights. Director Amir Bar-Lev will be on-hand to discuss the film and, perhaps, reveal his all-time favorite version of "St. Stephen." Click here for a miracle, er, the trailer.
cutie and the boxer
Once a rising star in the '70's New York art scene, 80-year-old "boxing" painter Ushio Shinohara is prepping for his latest show, hoping to reinvigorate his career. His wife and de facto assistant, Noriko, seeks her own recognition through her "Cutie" illustrations, which depict their chaotic 40-year marriage. CUTIE AND THE BOXER captures two lives united by a dedication to art-making for a touching meditation on the eternal themes of love and sacrifice
The Bad Kids
Located in an impoverished Mojave Desert community, Black Rock Continuation High School is one of California’s alternative schools for students at risk of dropping out. Every student here has fallen so far behind in credits that they have no hope of earning a diploma at a traditional high school. Black Rock is their last chance.
The Bad Kids is an observational documentary that chronicles one extraordinary principal’s mission to realize the potential of these students whom the system has deemed lost causes. Employing a verité approach during a year at the school, our film follows Principal Vonda Viland as she coaches three at-risk teens––a new father who can’t support his family, a young woman grappling with sexual abuse, and an angry young man from an unstable home––through the traumas and obstacles that rob them of their spirit and threaten their goal of a high school diploma. Click here for trailer.
“Perceptive and persuasive… an insightful, affecting film.” –The Hollywood Reporter
best of enemies
In the summer of 1968 television news changed forever. Dead last in the ratings, ABC hired two towering public intellectuals to debate each other during the Democratic and Republican national conventions. William F. Buckley Jr. was a leading light of the new conservative movement. A Democrat and cousin to Jackie Onassis, Gore Vidal was a leftist novelist and polemicist. Armed with deep-seated distrust and enmity, Vidal and Buckley believed each other’s political ideologies were dangerous for America. Like rounds in a heavyweight battle, they pummeled out policy and personal insult—their explosive exchanges devolving into vitriolic name-calling. Live and unscripted, they kept viewers riveted. Ratings for ABC News skyrocketed, and a new era in public discourse was born. Click here for trailer.
Special guests, co-directors: Tyler & Araby Kelly
In 1960, Bob and Nancy Griffith set out on their 53-foot sailboat to chase a dream: to be free - free from bosses, rent, and red tape. From that moment they were wedded to the sea, steering their 53-foot cutter Awahnee literally to the ends of the earth. They spent the decades of the 1960s and 70s sailing to places no small boat ever had been before, raising three children at sea, and navigating the relentless pull of family and adventure.
Combining recent interviews with 16-millimeter home movies
shot by Nancy on location from Antarctica to Polynesia,
Following Seas is not only a story of world records and sailing feats, but of a family who truly lived a self-determined life and made the sacrifices their dream demanded.
A real-life Swiss Family Robinson...
with one riveting adventure after another.
- Film School Rejects
Directed by Josh Kreigman, who will be joining us for a Q&A after the film
"Hilarious...like a Spinal Tap of politics... It's the full package." - New York Post
"Mind-blowing... One of the best documentaries ever made about a political scandal." - Rolling Stone
"Fast, funny, insightful and outrageous - politics at its insane best." - Vanity Fair
the hand that feeds
At their local bakery cafe, residents of New York's Upper East Side get bagels and coffee served with a smile 24 hours a day. But behind the scenes, undocumented immigrant workers face sub-legal wages, dangerous machinery, and abusive managers who will fire them for calling in sick. Sandwich maker Mahoma López has never been interested in politics, but in January 2012, he convinces a small group of his co-workers to fight back.