If you ever want to become acquainted with the documentary scene of another part of the world, Doc Alliance is your best friend. And this month they’re set on sharing with us the nonfiction cinema of Taiwan, in partnership with the Taiwan Documentary Film Festival. Doc Alliance’s new streaming event “Go Asian!” is a curation of five films from the past five years, including the 2014 short Listen, Darling and the features Hometown Boy and Mountain Spirits, which respectively profile artists Liu XiaoDong and Wang Wen-Chih. There’s also the timely (given this week’s release of Snowden) surveillance-themed doc 4891, which isn’t critical but is still plenty disturbing.
And there’s Chung Chuan’s Face to Face, a look at Taiwanese wrestlers who struggle to balance their time in the ring with their “day jobs” (some of them actually work at night and/or have multiple jobs) and families. It’s a sensitive portrayal of the masculine sport populated by a number of guys who are anything but macho in their regular lives. It’s for anyone who likes wrestling and wrestling docs, but it especially reminds me of Robert Greene’s Fake It So Real and is recommended to fans of that film. That’s why Face to Face is the one of the handful of Taiwanese docs we’ve chosen to showcase most prominently during Doc Alliance’s event. Watch it for free below, now through September 25.