Documentary Competition

From the absurd and terrifying to the inspiring and beyond, there are stories to be told all throughout our living world, providing documentarians endless source material for compelling projects.

Music, dance, art, sports, history, politics, the natural world—all these offer an infinite number of stories that we've never heard, or think we know well but that might require another look. These films broaden our horizons and invigorate our understanding of the planet, including the people and creatures we share it with. 

The winner as chosen by a jury will be announced at the Golden Space Needle Awards and receives a cash prize of $5,000.

Jurors: Richard Abramowitz, Simon Kilmurry, and Pat Saperstein

Read Juror Bios

Afghan Cycles

USA | 2018 | 90 minutes | Sarah Menzies

Follows Afghanistan's first national women's cycling team as they fight for their right to race.

View Trailer More Details

Inventing Tomorrow

USA | 2018 | 105 minutes | Laura Nix

Winner of the SIFF 2018 Grand Jury Prize - Documentary Competition | Brilliant teenage minds come together to devise solutions to climate change in this life-affirming science documentary.

More Details


Sri Lanka | 2018 | 94 minutes | Stephen Loveridge

The genesis, artistry, and politics of subversive hip-hop star M.I.A. are unraveled in a kinetic collage of her own footage.

More Details

People's Republic of Desire

China | 2018 | 95 minutes | Hao Wu

A captivating look at China’s Internet celebrities, and the dark side of their pursuit for digital fame.

View Trailer More Details


United Kingdom | 2017 | 70 minutes | Daisy Asquith

A vivid montage of the past century of LGBTQ experience in the UK, as depicted in film and TV footage.

View Trailer More Details

Team Hurricane

Denmark | 2017 | 96 minutes | Annika Berg

Coming-of-age film where eight punk rebels explore their artistic expressions through social media while managing painful realities.

View Trailer More Details

Unarmed Verses

Canada | 2017 | 86 minutes | Charles Officer

A luminous and insightful 12-year-old girl goes on a transformative journey to find her voice through a local music program.

View Trailer More Details

Warrior Women

USA | 2018 | 67 minutes | Elizabeth A. Castle, Christina D. King

A documentary highlighting Indigenous women’s rights through the lives of Madonna Thunder Hawk and her daughter, Marcella.

More Details