What to expect at Minnesota’s own doc film fest

There haven’t been too many popular documentaries made about Minnesota–and that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Columbine, corrupt automakers–we can be grateful that our state hasn’t lent itself to such sensational topics. So what stories would we choose to tell about ourselves? See for yourself starting Thursday, Oct. 16, as the Minnesota Historical Society opens its third annual documentary film festival with Fritz, about our own Walter Mondale, by local doc superstar Melody Gilbert. The festival is free and runs through Oct. 21 at the Minnesota History Center.

It’s an ingenious concept: the MHS asks for 10-minute doc submissions which it can not only screen but add to its archive documenting the state. This will be the final year that the festival focuses on the so-called Greatest Generation, those born between 1910 and 1929 who lived through the Great Depression, fought in World War II and birthed the dominant U.S. economy. After this year, the festival opens up to broader concepts. Among this year’s entries are pieces on chief justices, a big-band leader, and quirky scientists.

At the Fritz premiere, which features interviews with Al Gore, Jimmy Carter, and other high-flying figures of the era, Mondale himself will speak.

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