Hot Docs has come and gone for another year. The 2017 edition of the event featured 228 films from across the planet, and we hope you had a chance to see at least some of the ones that interested you. There's plenty of coverage of the annual event in Toronto media, so out of the long list of films this year, our mission is always to find and highlight the films which focus on architecture and urban issues. This year we found a dozen of those, and from that batch there were a few award winners, as announced this weekend and earlier today.

The Villaways, setting for Unarmed Verses, image courtesy of Hot DocsThe Villaways, setting for Unarmed Verses, image courtesy of Hot Docs

Among the award winners is Unarmed Verses, taking the jury's award for Best Canadian Feature Documentary and $10,000. The story of growing up in a TCHC complex in North York that's in the throes of redevelopment, Charles Officer's film focuses on Francine Valentine, a 12-year-old who finds her voice during an uncertain time for herself, her family, and a whole neighbourhood that will have to move.

Frozen Norilsk, Siberia, from A Moon of Nickel and Ice, image courtesy of Hot DoFrozen Norilsk, Siberia, from A Moon of Nickel and Ice, image courtesy of Hot Docs

The Emerging Canadian Filmmaker award went to François Jacob for his film A Moon of Nickel and Ice, looking at life in the remote and normally restricted Russian industrial city of Norilsk. Things may have changed somewhat for the better since the days of the Soviet regime, but not enough for most people in this treeless Siberian outpost who mostly seem to be planning their escape.

An indigenous Brazilian looks over at Maracaña Stadium in State of Exception, imAn indigenous Brazilian looks over at Maracaña Stadium in State of Exception, image courtesy of Hot Docs

Films we highlighted also did well in the Hot Docs Audience Award voting. While the winner—Rumble: The Indians Who Rocked The World—wasn't on our list, Unarmed Verses can in 8th, State of Exception came in 11th, Last Men in Aleppo came in 15th, and Shadowman came in 20th. The full list is here, and we hope that all of these films and more will be available to see again soon!

We'll try to alert you to opportunities to see these films and the others we highlighted as they return to theatres or show up on television, but there are some films that are ready and waiting for you now.

 Battle For The City, image courtesy of TIFF.netCitizen Jane: Battle For The City, image courtesy of TIFF.net

If you haven't caught it yet, you might like to head down to the TIFF Bell Lightbox to catch the excellent Citizen Jane: Battle For The City while it is still on there. As of May 26, the film—which chronicles Jane Jacobs' fight to preserve Manhattan neighbourhoods in the face of Robert Moses' expressway plans, and which contains engrossing images of mid-20th century city life (and destruction)—moves to the Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema at Bloor and Bathurst. 

 No Fixed Address, image courtesy of Hot DocsVancouver: No Fixed Address, image courtesy of Hot Docs

Of this year's batch of UT-highlighted Hot Docs films, the first to show up in a regular run will be Vancouver: No Fixed Address, where you just may be treated to a preview of Toronto's real estate scene, a year or two from now. (You think the real estate market is crazy here now? This film will give you a deeper knowledge of what's going on in Vancouver now: it's a notch or two crazier than here—for the moment!)

Design Movements in the 19th and 20th Centuries, image courtesy of Hot DocsDesign Movements in the 19th and 20th Centuries, image courtesy of Hot Docs

The Hot Docs Cinema will also be presenting a six-week course on Thursday mornings starting May 25 that may interest those of you with flexible schedules. Curious Minds: By Design tackles Design Movements in the 19th and 20th Centuries. Get more info at this link!

Happy cinema-going!