CPH:DOX 2023 - The Why’s Top Film Picks

Martin Lange & Rachel Sheary
April 3, 2023

Every year, CPH:DOX brings a selection of the world’s best new documentaries to Copenhagen - we’re lucky enough to get to see a lot of them!

Here are our recommendations from this years festival programme: 

A Storm Foretold

Christoffer Guldbrandsen

This is the portrait film of the year. Roger Stone, a political operative with five decades of experience in Washington politics, attempts to get Trump reelected during the 2020 presidential campaign. Stone will have you believe that he steered Trump towards the presidency in 2016 and that he coined the infamous phrase “Stop the steal!”, and he will charge you 15 dollars for a stone with his autograph on it. Guldbrandsen provides ample time for the cigar smoking and fedora wearing con man to expose himself. A must see.

A Theatre of Violence

Emil Langballe, Lukasz Konopa 

A visually stunning film with a complex story that is somewhat unsatisfying, but nevertheless important to tell. Dominic Ongwen was kidnapped as a child and grew up in the Lord’s Resistance Army, a Ugandan rebel group led by Joseph Kony, where he committed war crimes and crimes against humanity. The film revolves around his trial at the ICC and it shows the oftentimes farcical nature of international law and how arrest and conviction in the Hague are typically functions of the power of the authorities and not based on the preponderance of illegal actions taking place in the world. A valid question put forward by the people who know Ongwen: Why only him, when so many others committed the same crimes?

The Last Year of Darkness

Benjamin Mullinkosson 

A unique look into the young underground scene in Chengdu, where a group of friends tries to break with the conventions of Chinese society, escaping in music and partying in night clubs until the sun rises. It's visually pleasing and uses gestures and metaphors that capture the viewer into an alluring and dark environment.

Total Trust

Jialing Zhang

An ominous glimpse into the surveillance state that is modern day China. The film follows the families of two lawyers who were arrested during the 709 Crackdown in 2015. Charged with inciting subversion of state power, they both spend years in prison. The only hope of getting them out rests with the families that work tirelessly on writing appeals while the state makes use of its wide range of surveillance tools to dissuade them.


Alexander Mihalkovich, Hanna Badziaka 

A quiet and tense portrait of Belarus, a country that’s subject to severe censorship and government propaganda. Following a mother who has lost her son to the army, while hearing a voice-over of touching letters, the viewer slowly understands how powerful and nerve wracking the military’s indoctrination system is. Concurrently we meet a group of friends all with an attachment to the army, wanting to go against the regime. This film shows us how this military experience can break something inside a human.

20 Days in Mariupol

Mstyslav Chernov 

This film chronicles the very beginning of the War in Ukraine and gives a chilling insight into the brutal reality of a city under siege. Some of the most shocking images and videos we have seen on the news since the war began come from the siege of Mariupol, where two journalists from the Associated Press risked their lives to document what was happening in their country. This one is not for the faint-hearted and contains some extremely graphic imagery, but a must-watch for anyone who feels that they are turning their eyes away from a war that still desperately needs our support.

For more information on where to screen the films, go to cphdox.dk.

What’s a Rich Text element?

The rich text element allows you to create and format headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, images, and video all in one place instead of having to add and format them individually. Just double-click and easily create content.

Static and dynamic content editing

Static and dynamic content editing

Static and dynamic content editing

Static and dynamic content editing

Static and dynamic content editing
Static and dynamic content editing

A rich text element can be used with static or dynamic content. For static content, just drop it into any page and begin editing. For dynamic content, add a rich text field to any collection and then connect a rich text element to that field in the settings panel. Voila!

How to customize formatting for each rich text

Headings, paragraphs, blockquotes, figures, images, and figure captions can all be styled after a class is added to the rich text element using the "When inside of" nested selector system.

More news

More news