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The San Francisco Documentary Film Festival (SF DocFest) returns May 31 to June 15, 2017, at the Roxie Theater, Vogue Theater and the Alamo Drafthouse New Mission Theater in San Francisco.

The festival will kick off its Roxie Theater screenings with the California Premiere of Rory Kennedy’s TAKE EVERY WAVE: THE LIFE OF LAIRD HAMILTON on Thursday, June 1st. The film looks at the remarkable life and career of big wave surfer Laird Hamilton.

SF DocFest will launch its Vogue Theater screenings with Lynn Hersman Leeson’s latest film TANIA LIBRE, a look at New York-based psychiatrist and trauma specialist Dr. Frank Ochberg and his consultations with Cuban artist Tania Bruguera as he consults with her after she served an eight-month sentence for being critical of the government. The film, narrated by Tilda Swinton, reveals the revolutionary potential for art and how the short-term, spontaneous and transitory nature of performance art represents a means to criticize the Cuban government.

Winner of the Grand Jury Prize for Best Documentary Feature at the 2017 SXSW Film Festival, SF DocFest will screen THE WORK as its Centerpiece Film on Friday, June 9 at the Roxie Theater. Set in a single room in Folsom Prison, THE WORK follows three men during an intensive four-day group therapy session with convicts in the prison. The result is a rare look past the dehumanizing tropes of prison culture and an intimate portrait of human transformation that transcends what we think of as rehabilitation.

The festival will close on Thursday, June 15th at the Roxie Theater with a sneak preview of local filmmaker Timothy Crandle’s BURIED IN THE MIX. The film explores the lives, losses, and loves of a few of the bands and illustrious characters who contributed to the early San Francisco punk music scene, a scene distinguished by its boisterous energy and unbridled creativity. Featuring The Mutants, The Avengers and rare footage from the infamous Mabuhay, the film assembles a collage of stories that combine to tell a story of the punk movement.

Acclaimed documentary filmmaker Jamie Meltzer will be the recipient of the 2017 Non-Fiction Vanguard Award. Coming off its world premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York, Meltzerʼs latest film, TRUE CONVICTION, takes a look at a new detective agency in Dallas, Texas, started by a group of exonerated men with decades in prison served between them who look to free innocent people behind bars.

SF DocFest will also present a retrospective screening of Meltzerʼs first feature documentary OFF THE CHARTS: THE SONG-POEM STORY (2003) which is a fascinating, at times unsettling, film that exposes the strange underworld of the song-poem industry.

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