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Part of Doc Stories film series


Directed by Elizabeth Lo

USA | Documentary | 73

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Film Available to Stream

Thu, Dec 3 at 12:01 am – Sun, Dec 6 at 11:59 pm PST

Live Q&A

Fri, Dec 4 at 8:30 pm PST

Streaming Window Ended


Director Elizabeth Lo is expected for the live Q&A on Friday, December 4 at 8:30 pm PST.


The world of three stray dogs commingling among the inhabitants of the sprawling city of Istanbul is the subject of Elizabeth Lo’s beguiling documentary feature debut. The viewer is thrust into their world as they wander the busy thoroughfares and city streets of Istanbul subsisting on scraps of food and finding temporary shelter and companionship with a group of young Syrian refugees squatting in an abandoned building. With an expressive musical score by Ali Helnwein and sound design by Ernst Karel, this stunning, observational, and immersive film creates a dynamic portrait of a country in turmoil.

Stray is a critical observation of human civilization through the unfamiliar gaze of dogs and a sensory voyage into new ways of seeing. Through their canine eyes, we are shown a human world ruptured by divisions along class, ethnic, and gender lines. It is at this intersection that Stray seeks to shed light on Turkey’s societal convulsions through the observations of Zeytin and her companions — both human and nonhuman.” —Elizabeth Lo

Director Elizabeth Lo

Elizabeth Lo was in Stanford University’s graduate documentary program when she made her short Hotel 22 (SFFILM Festival 2015), the winner of CAAMFest’s Student Film Award. Her other short films include Treasure Island (2015), Last Stop in Santa Rosa (2015), Bisonhead (2016), Notes from Buena Vista (2016), The Disclosure President (2016), and Mother’s Day (2017). Stray is her feature debut. In 2015, Filmmaker magazine named her one of its “25 New Faces of Independent Film.”

Film Details

Language Turkish

Year 2020

Runtime 73

Country USA/Turkey

Director Elizabeth Lo

Producer Elizabeth Lo, Shane Boris

Editor Elizabeth Lo

Cinematographer Elizabeth Lo

Music Ali Helnwein