SINCE ITS INCEPTION IN 2003, the Copenhagen International Documentary Film Festival (CPH:DOX) has championed a hybrid model of documentary film—work situated between fiction and nonfiction, between visual art and cinema; there’s even room for full-fledged fiction films. The festival deserves its reputation for adventurous programming; this is, after all, the only documentary festival to screen Harmony Korine’s Trash Humpers in competition and award it the top prize, as it did in 2009. It’s also become a festival of unwieldy ambition that continues to maintain a charming intimacy, even as it has
NOW IN ITS SIXTY-SIXTH YEAR, the Locarno Film Festival remains a cineast’s festival devoted to discovery. Each August, the southern Swiss town, situated ten miles from Italy (an oasis with palm trees and views of the Alps), dresses up in the ubiquitous yellow leopard print (as per Locarno’s mascot) to play host to one of Europe’s oldest festivals. Locarno benefits from a serendipitous combination of Swiss organization and Mediterranean charm, and as such it offers an antidote to Venice’s glitzy industry influence, retaining an enjoyably easygoing atmosphere while also championing cinema as art.