Doc Talk is a bi-weekly column devoted to all things documentary. The above image is from 'How to Die in Oregon.'
Last night, almost a year to the date of its sudden, last minute entry onto the Sundance 2010 schedule, Banksy's 'Exit Through the Gift Shop' won the top award at the Cinema Eye Honors, which recognizes the year's best in non-fiction filmmaking.
Although I don't agree it is the best documentary of the year (in my opinion, that would be fellow Sundance '10 alum 'Last Train Home,' which took three of its own Cinema Eye trophies), 'Exit' has been one of the most significant, drawing a lot of attention to non-fiction cinema as it made us all question the very nature of the mode while also raising curiosity and consciousness about street art, the established art world and, most popularly, the existence and identity of Banksy (was he at the Honors last night? Very few attendees can be sure).
As a non-fiction film fan, it is exciting and favorable to see any doc, even one I dislike (and I do in fact like 'Exit'), remain a talking point for so long.