Posts Tagged ‘human rights film festivals’

Human Rights Films: call for action or entertainment?

March 20, 2018

The 1972 photo of a young girl running naked in Trang Bang screaming in pain from the effects of napalm had a profound influence on the public’s perception of the horrors of the Vietnam War. The 2015 photo of a three-year-old refugee boy drowned in the Mediterranean Sea in Turkey also had a profound influence of the public’s perception, this time on the desperate plight of millions of refugees. The images of Phan Thi Kim Phuc and Aylan Kurdi are iconic representations. Both capture larger stories; both images express powerful narratives. 

Visualization is story telling in another form. ……Marshall McLuhan in the 1960s introduced the notion that the medium of communication – movies for instance – change how a message is perceived. Directors can alter time sequences; background music can play directly to our emotions. We have entered new forms of communication that are just beginning to be understood.
The recent Geneva International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights was a significant event; 61 films shown in 57 venues in the Swiss Romand and Grand Genève, 28 debates and discussions with important figures such as the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Catalonian leader Carles Puidgemont as well as a human rights film tour organized by Swiss embassies in 45 countries.
…The images were shocking, almost numbing. We in the theatre became more than viewers, we became indirect witnesses through the lens of the film.
Several directors participated in debates following the presentations. They all expressed hope that the revelations shown on the screen would encourage reaction from the audience beyond the theatre. The purpose of the film, many argued, was to move the attendees and future viewers from watchers – i.e., indirect witnesses – to activists. The films, according to their creators, were calls to action.
McLuhan is most pertinent here. Watching a movie, any movie, is passive/emotional. The director leads us through what he or she wants us to see and feel. We are being literally directed. At a human rights film festival, we are directed, made aware, and called to action. The message of the medium is more than just perception; it is a motivation to do something. But the screen is just a screen, and a silver screen at that. The films were expertly produced. Most were technologically impressive. The cruelty and crudeness of human suffering were presented with all that modernity could offer.
It is the contrast between the rawness of grave breaches of human dignity and the sophistication of the current cinema that somehow reduced the power of the message. If, according to McLuhan, the medium is the message, then the films themselves – with all their slick professionalism – somehow played against a call to action. The excellence of the films was in contradiction to the cruelty and chaos of what they were showing.
.. Human rights activists are turning to visualization to appeal to larger and larger audiences. Visualization is today’s most powerful means of communication and it is becoming more and more sophisticated. The object of human rights’ film makers is to get the message out to the largest audience in an appealing way. The written era of Gutenberg is no longer hot. It is easier to teach students World War II by viewing Saving Private Ryan than to have them read weighty tomes of historical documentation.
If the message of human rights’ films is to witness human rights violations and call to action, professional presentations may be counter-productive. Movies are fundamentally entertainment; however instructive they may be. But when it comes to human rights and their violations, there should be as little entertainment as possible.

 

Call for proposals to organize human rights film festivals 2018/19

February 14, 2018

To promote the screenings of human rights cinema worldwide, Movies that Matter offers grants to human rights film events in Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Middle East and Eastern Europe, especially in countries with limited resources and freedom of press. These events can take various forms, such as human rights film festivals, LGBT film festivals and mobile cinema projects. Please note that Movies that Matter does not support film production. You can apply on-line. The deadline is 15 April 201§8

see also: https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2017/11/19/supporting-film-festivals-on-human-rights-in-2018/

https://www.moviesthatmatter.nl/english_index/international/support_programme

Supporting film festivals on human rights in 2018

November 19, 2017

Movies that Matter presented the ten festivals that it recently decided to support. This month, it offered grants to a new round of projects. Among others, two debuting festivals that will receive the start-up grant: for the first time a human rights film festival will take place in Timor-Leste in 2018. To bring the cinema to the people, the Timor-Leste Human Rights Film Festival will use a portable set-up to screen their selection of films at multiple sites. A new film festival will also arrive in South Africa: Shining Lights onto Langa. The festival introduces people to the Sunshine Cinema, a solar powered mobile cinema that converts solar energy into social impact. It brings people together with the intent to uplift grassroots movements and create networks of social change.

Additionally, the support goes to  three film festivals that pay direct attention to LGTBQI+ rights in Turkey, Pakistan and Myanmar. Other supported cinema projects include those in Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Palestine, Turkey and Peru.

See also: https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2017/03/01/small-grant-programme-for-human-rights-film-festivals-deadline-17-april/

Read more about all projects that were supported this year

https://www.moviesthatmatter.nl/nieuwsbrief_internationaal/18/international-support-november-2017

Women human rights defenders and their films at Movies That Matter 2017

April 10, 2017

Beth Murphy (Filmmaker/Journalist) wrote in the Huffington Post of 31 March 2017 under the title “The world’s human rights movement would look very different ‘if it weren’t for women’” a piece that highlights women human rights defenders in the context of the Movies That Matter Film Festival which took place in the Netherlands earlier this year [https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2017/03/15/movies-that-matter-film-festival-in-the-hague-from-24-march-to-1-april-2017/]. Movies that Matter, the Amnesty International film festival celebrated nine human rights defenders and screened films that share their powerful stories. Here some of these defenders: Read the rest of this entry »

Small-grant programme for human rights film festivals – deadline 17 April

March 1, 2017

The increasing use of images in the human rights world seems unstoppable. One (small) feature is the organisation of local human rights film festivals. Movies that Matter has an International Support Programme that offers small grants to stage human rights film events in countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America, Middle East and Eastern Europe.

To promote the screenings of human rights cinema worldwide, Movies that Matter zooms in especially on countries with limited resources and freedom of press. These events can take various forms, such as human rights film festivals, LGBT film festivals, mobile cinema projects, school screenings and grassroots distribution. Each year the grant programme has two selection rounds. Deadlines are usually around mid-April [NEXT DEADLINE 17 APRIL 2017] and mid-September. Movies that Matter judges every project on its individual quality. If you’re not sure whether your project fits within the criteria, please contact MTM at international (at) moviesthatmatter.nl.

Please note that Movies that Matter does not support film production. Find an overview of possible resources for film production here.!

Grant programme

Apply for funding and for more information about the selection criteria, general regulations, and a link to download the entry form, and access the online personal data form. To get an idea of what has been funded see the list of allocated grants to 196 projects from more than 100 applicants in 60 countries that got funds in 2007-2016 (Read more)

see also: https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2014/12/30/round-up-of-2014-in-human-rights-images/

and https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2014/03/22/multiple-exposure-front-lines-video-programme-for-human-rights-defenders/

https://humanrightsdefenders.blog/2015/11/10/is-there-any-way-to-engage-people-with-human-rights-communication/

Support for screening human rights films

March 15, 2016

Movies that Matter supports human rights film screenings in developing countries and countries where press freedom is at stake. Applications are welcome for mobile cinema projects, human rights film festivals, film outreach projects or other innovative cinema projects to stimulate the discussion on human rights, social justice and freedom of expression?
Starting this year, Movies that Matter offers two types of grants to stage human rights film festivals and screenings in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America and the Middle East:
a) start-up grants (max. EUR 7,500); and b) impact grants (max. EUR 10,000).
Please note that Movies that Matter does not support film production!
The application deadline is 17 April 2016.

See the website for more information about these types of grants, the selection criteria and how to apply:
http://www.moviesthatmatter.nl/english_index/international/support_programme

For inspiration, read about Movies that Matter’s earlier grantees here:
http://www.moviesthatmatter.nl/english_index/international/support_programme/supported_projects

http://www.moviesthatmatter.nl/
P.O. Box 1968, 1000 BZ, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Phone: +31 20 7733630


Human Rights Watch Film Festival celebrates 25th anniversary with 5 films on Human Rights Defenders

May 13, 2014

The Human Rights Watch Film Festival, which celebrates 25 years, announces a line-up of 22 features, which includes 20 documentaries and 2 fiction films – 16 of which were made by women. It will run from 12 to 22 June 2014  in New York. There is a special section on “Human Rights Defenders, Icons and Villains”, which features:
“E-TEAM”
(New York premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Katy Chevigny and Ross Kauffman, directors; Marilyn Ness, producer
Year: 2013 / 89m

Dangerous Acts Starring the Unstable Elements of Belarus”
(New York premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Madeleine Sackler
Year: 2013 / 76m

“The Green Prince”
(New York premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Nadav Schirman
Year: 2014 / 101m

“Nelson Mandela: The Myth and Me”
(US premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Khalo Matabane
Year: 2013 / 84m

“Watchers of the Sky”
(New York premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Edet Belzberg
Year: 2014 / 114m

Human Rights Watch Festival Line-Up Includes 16 Features By Women|Filmmakers,Film Industry, Film Festivals, Awards & Movie Reviews | Indiewire.

Funding for human rights film festivals in developing countries

April 7, 2014

Those who are planning to organise a film project with human rights films in Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and Middle East could apply for (modest) funding from the Netherlands-based NGO “Movies that Matter”. The organisation also offers advice to initiate human rights film festivals and helps to circulate and exhibit human rights films. Its support covers projects like mobile cinema projects, human rights film festivals, travelling film festivals, outreach programmes, and educational activities at schools and universities, but it does not support film production! The deadline for applications is 15 April 2014.

For more information, selection criteria and application forms, see www.moviesthatmatter.nl/international

Syrian film maker arrested to stop him coming to Geneva Film Festival

March 4, 2014

The Film Festival and International Forum on Human Rights (better known under its French name ‘Le Festival du Film et Forum International sur les Droits Humains’ and acronym: FIFDH) made public on 4 March that the film maker Mohammad Malas was arrested at the Syrian-Lebanese border on his way to Geneva to present his film, Ladder to Damascus (La montée vers Damas – 2013).  [Mohammad Malas, born in 1945, is the most famous Syrian film – his 1992 film The Night was considered to be among the top 10 Arab films according to The Guardian. This film was banned for 4 years in Syria.] for more information please contact: L Elisabeth Pfund e.pfund[at]fifdh.ch – Tel +41 (0) 022 809 69 03.

https://thoolen.wordpress.com/tag/fifdh/

International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights 2014 – from 7 to 16 March in Geneva

February 27, 2014

The International Film Festival and Forum on Human Rights [FIFDH] was inaugurated in 2003. This year’s session runs from 7 to 16 March, 2014. On purpose it coincides with the UN Human Rights Council. This simultaneous event helps to make the Festival a Platform for discussion and debates on a wide variety of topics concerning human rights. As a genuine Forum on Human Rights, the Festival informs and firmly denounces violations of civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights wherever they occur. In the heart of Geneva, the “international hub for human rights”, the FIFDH offers debates as well as unscreened films and solidarity actions. The link to the full programme is: http://www.fifdh.org/2014/index.php?rubID=101&lan=en Read the rest of this entry »