FQ editor-in-chief B. Ruby Rich presents her take on festival-going in the time of COVID. While noting the challenges posed by geoblocking and navigating festival schedules across multiple time zones, along with the absence of the excitement and comradeship that provide live festivals with their momentum, she observes that virtual festivals—liberated from geography—offer advantages in terms of access. Surveying the offerings at the Toronto Film Festival, New York Film Festival, and DOK Leipzig, Rich highlights feature films and documentaries that offered a welcome escape from her COVID-demarcated existence, from critical favorites such as Nomadland (dir. Chloe Zhao, 2020 ) and Steve McQueen’s “Small Axe” anthology series, to discoveries such as Hong Sang-soo’s Domangchin yeoja (The Woman Who Ran, 2020) and En route pour le milliard (Downstream to Kinshasa, 2020), by the young Congolese documentarian Dieudo Hamadi.

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