Tuesday 21.5. / 8 pm / Dokukino KIC


USA, 2023, 30'
Director: Bill Morrison · Editing: Bill Morrison · Production: Bill Morrison (Hypnotic Pictures), Jamie Kalven (Invisible Institute)

“The eminent poet of lost films” Bill Morrison uses footage from police body and other surveillance cameras to reconstruct the Chicago police shooting of 2018, in which Harith Augustus, a 37-year-old African-American barber, was needlessly stopped for carrying a gun for which he had a permit, and then senselessly killed in the ensuing melee. The film depicts the shooting and what preceded and followed immediately after the “incident” through a series of split-screen quadrants representing a continuous, simultaneous, synchronized display of the murder in 30 minutes of real time. One of the fundamental paradoxes upon which America is built is once again exposed: the inability to reconcile the right to bear arms with the fear of others who have the same rights. The same paradox can also be applied to the police camera – if it doesn’t protect you, it can potentially be a harmful witness in someone else’s hands. Morrison reminds us of the central premise of Akira Kurosawa’s Rashomon (1951), that one event can be interpreted in multiple ways depending on who is telling the story. Morrison applies Rashomon logic to a modern crime story, relying on surveillance footage which attempt to reveal the objective truth, but are still tied to the narrative of whoever presents and interprets the recordings. Morrison’s deconstruction and reconstruction of this disturbing event is one of the finest cinematic depictions of police violence and systemic racism in American law enforcement and judiciary.

Awards and festivals:

Clermont-Ferrand International Short Film Festival (2024) – Best Documentary; International Documentary Association (2023) – Best Short Documentary; Unarchive Found Footage Festival (2023) – Best Short Film; Visions du Réel (2023); Sheffield DocFest (2023); IDFA (2023); IndieLisboa (2023); Documenta Madrid (2023)


Bill Morrison has premiered feature-length documentaries at film festivals in New York, Sundance, Telluride, and Venice. He is a recipient of the Alpert, Creative Capital, and Guggenheim awards. His found footage opus Decasia (2002) was the first film of the 21st century to be included in the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress. Associated Press, Los Angeles Times, and Vanity Fair have declared his archival documentary film Dawson City: Frozen Time (2016) one of the best films of the decade (2010s). His latest film, Incident (2023), was awarded at Clermont-Ferrand.