image from the film
The debate about where to draw the line – or whether there is a line to be drawn – between fact and fiction is not exclusive to the documentary. The crucial question of what to believe about the images that we see, whether in a film or on the evening news, becomes the starting point for the work of certain filmmakers whose films negotiate that uncertain frontier where documentary and storytelling meet. Edgardo Cozarinsky from Argentina, José Luis Guerín from Spain, Luis Ospina from Colombia and Eduardo Coutinho from Brazil are four modern masters of the form. Their often unclassifiable work is at the forefront of this renewal in the practice of both fiction and documentary, in a tradition that can lay claim to Jorge Luis Borges as much as to Robert Flaherty. They are all exceptionally lucid practitioners whose contribution to the debate will by no means be limited to their work. Their presence together at Princeton will be an event in itself.


The Department of Spanish and Portuguese Languages and Cultures, The Program in Latin American Studies, The University Center for Human Values, The Council of the Humanities, The Shelby Cullom Davis Center for Historical Studies, and The British Arts and Humanities Research Council

  • All films to be screened in the original language with English subtitles.
  • All screenings and festival activities are free and open to the public.

The Princeton Documentary Festival was created to bring attention to the current creative explosion of documentary filmmaking in Latin America and Spain.  Through public screenings, commentary and discussions, the festival provides its audience with exceptional, cutting-edge films that would not be otherwise available.  The aim is to contribute to a more comprehensive vision of the cultures from which this work springs, while encouraging a more informed debate on the specific topic addressed in each series and on the current state of documentary production.