23 Must-See Movies at Tribeca Film Festival

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'LA 92,' 'Hell on Earth: The Fall of Syria and the Rise of ISIS' and 'Whitney. Can I Be Me'

‘LA 92,’ ‘Hell on Earth: The Fall of Syria and the Rise of ISIS’ and ‘Whitney. Can I Be Me’

Courtesy of Tribeca Film Festival

The Tribeca Film Festival, wichs  off Wednesday with the premiere of Chris Perkel’s documentary Clive Davis: The Soundtrack of Our Lives, features a handful of standout narrative titles starring Al Pacino, Zoey Deutch, Ed Helms, Tracy Letts, Zachary Quinto, Rebecca Hall and more. And it also has a particularly strong documentary lineup, due in part to Donald Trump’s presidential victory.

“With the election, our priorities changed,” says programming director Cara Cusumano. “It became clear that there are very different worlds within this country, and nonfiction storytelling provides such a valuable mode for empathy and communication.”

Films such as The Reagan Show, which charts Ronald Reagan’s camera-friendly presidency, and ACORN and the Firestorm, about the controversial community organizing group, survey events that helped create today’s political landscape; while such titles as Copwatch, about citizen activists who police the cops, and When God Sleeps, about an exiled Iranian musician, capture the current moment.

“That’s in our DNA — this festival was founded as a response to what happened in our country after Sept. 11,” says Jane Rosenthal, who co-founded the festival with Robert De Niro in 2002. “It reminded people of the importance of artists’ voices and how movies can bring people together and give them hope.”

The Tribeca Film Festival runs April 19-30. See below for The Hollywood Reporter‘s 23 must-see movies making their world premieres.

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