Films

Blue: A Theory of Justice

The Man Who Mends Women - The Wrath of Hippocrates

Belgium 2015 Thierry Michel 

Doctor Mukwege is internationally known as the man who mended thousands of women who were raped during 20 years of conflict in the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, one of the poorest countries on the planet, despite its rich subsoil. His endless struggle to put an end to these atrocities and denounce the impunity enjoyed by the perpetrators was not universally welcomed. At the end of 2012, the doctor was the target of another attempt on his life, which he miraculously survived. Threatened with death, this doctor now lives cloistered in his hospital in Bukavu under the protection of United Nation peacekeepers. 

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Fire at Sea 

Italy 2016 Gianfranco Rosi

Situated some 200 km off Italy's southern coast, Lampedusa has hit world headlines in recent years as the first port of call for hundreds of thousands of African and Middle Eastern migrants hoping to make a new life in Europe. Rosi spent months living on the Mediterranean island, capturing its history, culture, and the everyday reality of its 6,000-strong local population as hundreds of migrants land on its shores on a weekly basis. The resulting documentary focuses on 12-year-old Samuele, a local boy who loves to hunt with his slingshot and spend time on land even though he hails from a culture steeped in the sea.

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A Fight For

Slovenia 2014 Siniša Gačić

This film documents a group of civilians who protested for several days, living in tents, in front of the Ljubljana Stock Exchange, demonstrating against representative democracy and global financial capitalism. United in their diversity, all individuals are said to have an equal say. But after the initial euphoria, the big idea of direct democracy collides with the contemporary reality, causing discord.

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Natural Disorder

Denmark 2015 Christian Sønderby Jepsen

Jacob Nossell is a 27-year-old journalism student with a normal intellect but an impaired body. He has cerebral palsy, which means he has difficulty talking and moving, and he suffers from muscle cramps and stiffness. Mentally, he’s on par with his fellow students, and that’s the crux of the matter. He’s too disabled for society to accept him as normal, but too normal to simply lie down and accept his fate. And what exactly is “normal” anyway? Natural Disorder follows Jacob directing a play for the Royal Danish Theater in which he explores the meaning of identity and normality and asks what life is all about.

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As I Open My Eyes

Belgium, France, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates 2015 Leyla Bouzid

Tunis, summer 2010, a few months before the Revolution: Farah, 18 years old, has just graduated, and her family already sees her as a future doctor. But she doesn't think the same way. She sings in a political rock band. She has a passion for life, gets drunk, and discovers love and her city by night against the will of her mother Hayet, who knows Tunisia and its dangers too well.

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Democrats

Denmark 2014 Camilla Nielsson

Two political opponents are appointed to write Zimbabwe's new constitution. It is the ultimate test that can bring an end to President Mugabe's 30 years of autocratic rule. It can go either way: towards the birth of a constitutional democracy – or renewed repression.

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Sonita 

Germany, Iran, Switzerland 2015 Rokhsareh Ghaem Maghami

Sonita wants to be a famous rapper. The film starts at a time when her only fans are the other children at a shelter in Teheran. Sonita fled with some relatives from Taliban rule in Afghanistan to Iran, but her parents remained at home. She is only 1 of about 15 million other minor girls from around the world who face an arranged marriage. Her parents are tempted by the $9,000 they could get for their daughter and are not interested in rapping. In addition, solo female singers are banned in Iran. Sonita, however, wants to choose her own destiny. When she asks the director whether she’d like to buy her, as she is for sale anyway, her story takes an entirely unexpected turn.

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The Barber and the Bomb (* Filmin dili Türkçe ve Almanca'dır. Film, İngilizce ALTYAZISIZ gösterilecektir / Film in Turkish and German, NO English subtitles)

Germany 2015 Andrea Maus

A nail-filled bomb injured more than 20 in Cologne’s Keupstrasse 12 years ago. The ensuing investigation caused even greater wounds. The police erred, thinking the attack was the settling of accounts between Turkish families, and looked for the culprits among the victims. This film allows people who were ignored for years to finally speak. As well as those actually involved, actors help to reconstruct events, drawing attention to how badly the police failed. The film’s critical nature is enhanced by the visually effective use of details of the victims’ faces.

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Amal 

Germany 2015 Caroline Reucker

A father decides that it is not safe to stay in war-torn Syria, and so moves with the surviving members of his family to Lebanon. But his son needs quality medical care due to a serious hand injury. He wants the daughters to be able to go to high school. With the prospect of a better future the Syrian family leaves Lebanon for Germany, where they get two years of asylum. A team of German filmmakers monitors how the family settles into the new environment. The children gradually find friends, learn the language, and manage to fit in with their peers. But it's harder for the adults. The mother Ghadir still doesn’t feel at home in Europe. Although the war took her daughter Amal, she still hopes – unlike her daughters, who are already planning their future in Europe – that one day they will all be able to return to Syria.

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Democracy - Data Fever

Germany 2015 David Bernet

What has Brussels come up with now? A question often read in the news or heard on TV. Director David Bernet decided to find an answer. For 2 years he tracked German politician Jan Philipp Albrecht in his efforts to oversee the drafting of the new EU legislation on data protection. What he saw was an unbelievably stressful, both inspiring and frustrating, cycle of meetings, discussions and sessions with MEPs and various groups of lobbyists and activists. The result is a unique film from behind the scenes of Brussels politics. It also provides at least a partial answer as to how a complex organism consisting of 28 countries can even function. The director tries to evoke the stereotypical “grey Brussels” by shooting in black and white.

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Drifter

Hungary 2014 Gábor Hörcher

Young rebel Ricsi lives his life on the edge. “Trouble” is his middle name. He is unruly, restlessly scaring up problem after problem. Driving cars without a license, theft, and escaping from the cops are all just a part of his daily routine, much for his parents’ despair. Ricsi won't stand for routines nor the expectations of his deadbeat father. After all, where was he when Ricsi needed him the most?

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Two Euros Per Hour

Italy 2016 Andrea D'Ambrosio

In Southern Italy two women meet. Rosa, 17, has a boyfriend who, she hopes, will take her far from the village. Gladys, 35, returned from Venezuela without money, unmarried, and has given up her dreams. Gladys meets Aldo and believes in the possibility of a new life, but it is an illusion. Gladys and Rosa hope, laugh, love, and work for 2 euros an hour in a lab below street level, with no windows, harassed by a rude and abusive boss. A fire then overwhelms them. Rescuers will find them embracing. Only one will survive.

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El Dorado

Luxembourg 2016 Rui Eduardo Abreu, Thierry Besseling, Loïc Tanson

Luxembourg is a small country in the heart of Europe, made up of 46% foreigners, the majority of Portuguese descent. The hopes and disillusions of four of these Lusophone immigrants collide over a period of three years: Fernando, a middle-aged man, arrives in a new country to escape the financial crisis in Portugal, while ex-con Carlos battles chronic unemployment. Jonathan, an adolescent who attends the trashcan section of a vocational school, struggles to find his place in life, whereas Isabel has fled a violent past and tries to start over.

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Batrachian's Ballad 

Portugal 2016 Leonor Teles

The idea behind the film derives from the Portuguese tradition of placing ceramic frogs in the doorways of restaurants and other commercial premises to ward off gypsies. Something Romani and frogs have in common is that they will never be unseen, or stay unnoticed. Weaving the life circumstances of the Romani in Portugal today, the youngest director ever to win the Golden Bear for best short film at the Berlinale calls attention to a growing tendency to use belief and superstition to deride other human beings and keep them at bay.

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Toto and His Sisters 

Romania 2014 Alexander Nanau

Totonel (10) and his sisters, Andreea (14) and Ana (17), are waiting for their mother to come back home from prison. As they grow up, each of them learns how to survive on their own, hoping that when their mother returns, the family will be reunited.

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So Far, So Near 

Slovakia 2014 Jaro Vojtek

When the father of severely autistic Andrej asked for special facilities for children with this developmental learning disability to be built in Slovakia, they told him to build it himself. So he did. For seven years, Slovak director Jaro Vojtek filmed the efforts, and those of other parents learning to live with  their own children on various levels of the autism spectrum. Milan, an experienced hiker and tram expert, suffers from atypical autism. Jakub was diagnosed with infantile autism. What are their daily lives like?

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Walls 

Spain 2015 Pablo Iraburu, Migueltxo Molina

As the Berlin Wall and Eastern Bloc fell, people eagerly hailed a new borderless world. Over 25 years later, they seem more divided than ever. Nations are separated by new walls, fences, and barbed wire. On each side are people with their own lives and hopes. Directors Pablo Iraburu and Migueltxo Molina link the fates of folk on opposite sides of the borders between Mexico and the US, Spain and Morocco, South Africa and Zimbabwe. 

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Nice People

Sweden 2015 Anders Helgeson, Karin af Klintberg

Nice people live in the Swedish town of Borlänge, if you believe the town’s motto. But not all the locals appreciate the presence of a large group of Somali immigrants. This prompts idealist Patrik Andersson to recruit a group of young Somalis for his bandy team (bandy is a kind of ice hockey). Eight months ahead of the 2014 world championship, the Somali national bandy team is formed. This is a new development, as no African country has ever taken part before. The hope is that the initiative will contribute to greater integration of the players. A good performance in Siberia, where the tournament is to be held, may bring about better understanding within the community.

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Looking Back on an Illusion - How They Believed in the Khmer Rouge

Switzerland 2015 Elena Hazanov, Claudio Recupero

Meeting a couple who has survived the abhorrent Khmer Rouge regime and filming their testimony: This is the life-changing experience that six Swiss students underwent, led by the film’s directors. Taking the audience on a journey from Brussels to Paris and then Phnom Penh, this documentary is as much a poignant and touching testimony by Ong Thong Hoeung and his spouse Bounnie of their descent into hell, in Khmer Rouge reeducation camps, as it is a reflection on a unique and growing relationship between these elderly witnesses and six young people willing to collect their story.

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The Crossing

Norway 2015 George Kurian

Musician Nabil, journalist Angela, and IT expert Rami fled from wartime Syria to Egypt. The refugees’ situation worsens and they face the ultimate threat: deportation. The friends opt for the only possible, albeit risky, solution: sailing to Europe. Absolutely everything is at stake. At the helm stands a 20-year-old who has probably never sailed anywhere and is just looking to earn money. They spend 7 days on the rough, open sea. How will the crossing end? What awaits them in Europe? Will they be happy again?

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Cafe Waldluft

Germany 2015 Matthias Kossmehl

For decades it was a family hotel, the starting point for walks in the Bavarian mountains. Today tourists heading to Berchtesgaden are in for a surprise; Café Waldluft has turned into a special place. Its owner, the jovial Mama Flora, has decided to accommodate only asylum-seekers. The hotel has become a temporary home for those who have fled for safety and a better life. They assist with its operation, serve the guests of the restaurant, interact with the locals, and meanwhile wait for the official handling of their cases. Will the refugees from Afghanistan, Syria, and Sierra Leone feel at home here?

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East of Eden (+16)

Czech Republic 2014 Hana Roguljič

Bosnia, Chechnya, Afghanistan, Ukraine: War reporter Petra Procházková has seen most of the major conflicts of the past 20 years and has often been in dangerous situations. Always drawn more to the East, to the post-Soviet countries, Procházková rebuffs the myth of objectivity, saying it has no place in reporting. A journalist should call evil by its proper name and not be afraid of emotions. This documentary portrait offers a glimpse behind the scenes of her work as well as into her thoughts and private life. 

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Shooting vs Shooting - Dying for the Truth (15+)

Greece 2011 Nikos Megrelis

For media professionals, the war in Iraq has been the bloodiest war in history. From the beginning of the invasion in 2003 until March 2008, more than 270 deaths have been reported and many more men and women have suffered injuries. The film documentary by Nikos Megrelis presents a group of astonishing stories from the war in Iraq. It follows a journalist's journey in today's Baghdad and narrates the story of a mother seeking an answer to the question of why her son was killed when his only weapon was his camera.

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Coastliners

Turkey 2016 Alphan Eşeli, Ramin Matin, Melisa Önel, Barış Pirhasan, Erdem Tepegöz

“Coastliners” consists of five short fiction films made by internationally acclaimed different directors on the theme of human rights. We accompany the personal effects of refugees washed ashore, the peculiar story of an assaulted young man, a mother and daughter who take refuge in a house when bombs sound on the Syrian border, a hero stuck in the hurly-burly of Istanbul, trying to overcome obstacles, and the spiritual journey of a pregnant woman trying to return to the village she was cast away from.

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Green: There Is Tomorrow

Land Grabbing 

Austria 2015 Kurt Langbein

Every hour an area of rainforest the size of 300 football pitches is destroyed by palm oil producers, yet production volume increases annually. The situation is similar with other profitable crops. As a result, vast areas of agricultural land in Asia, Africa, and even Europe fall into the hands of international investors. This film presents extensive testimony from many corners of the world about this business practice and the power of money, which prevails over the value of human life. Can EU lawmakers stop these practices? Or do their interests lie elsewhere?

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Out of Fashion

Estonia 2015 Jaak Kilmi, Lennart Laberenz

Upcycling is an increasingly widespread method in which materials from surplus products are used to create a product of higher value. Estonian fashion designer Reet Aus creates her collection according to this principle. She uses textiles that would normally end up in a landfill, just like the many thousands of tons of unsold or out-of-fashion clothing. While following the trail of the fashion industry, from retail chains to large Asian manufacturers, Reet discovers just how unsustainable this overproduction is, how it risks people's health and wastes the planet's resources. Reet's overriding ambition is to convince the management of multinational fashion corporations of the need for upcycling. Is she a foolish dreamer or the herald of a new era of fashion production?

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10 Billion - What Will We Eat Tomorrow?

Germany 2015 Valentin Thurn

Which food production methods can sustain our planet’s growing population? Is the world on the brink of a food crisis? Director Valentin Thurn, whose successful film “Taste the Waste” was featured at the One World Festival in 2012, presents an analytical discussion of individual agricultural methods, from urban gardening to a mechanised industrial approach, including artificial food production. The film provides various perspectives from different parts of the world. But the final decision is up to us: What food will we choose for our own plate?

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Bikes vs Cars

Sweden 2015 Fredrik Gertten

São Paulo, Los Angeles, and Toronto are known for their problematic transport policies. Dictates from the automotive industry, in many places the most prominent source of financing for the municipal and state coffers, have a fatal impact on the entire urban area, the smooth movement of the population, and their time and health. The documentary examines how for a number of individuals, urban cycling has become a solution and how, together with a growing number of cyclists, citizens' initiatives are growing worldwide to support them. 

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Orange: A Red Line in the Sand (Middle East/Syria)

 

A Syrian Love Story 

United Kingdom 2015 Sean McAllister

Filmed over 5 years, “A Syrian Love Story” charts an incredible odyssey to political freedom. For Raghda and Amer, it is a journey of hope, dreams and despair: for the revolution, their homeland, and each other. Amer, 45, met Raghda, 40, in a Syrian prison cell 15 years ago. He first saw her bloodied face after a beating when she was placed in a neighbouring cell. Over months they communicated through a tiny hole they’d secretly made in the wall. They fell in love and when released got married and started a family together.

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Disappeared - The Invisible War of Syria

France 2015 Sophie Nivelle-Cardinale, Etienne Huver

“The Disappeared” is a ground-breaking investigation into an invisible weapon that has been decimating the Syrian people since 2011: the enforced disappearance of more than 200,000 people. As many Syrians have vanished as died in the first four years of armed conflict in their country. Sophie Nivelle-Cardinale and Etienne Huver investigated in the Middle East and Europe, unearthing information about a killing machine that is operating unfettered in Syria. For the first time, Syrians who managed to escape as well as regime accomplices talk about the concentration camps where thousands and thousands of Syrians are being secretly held, as the dictatorship systematically kills off its opponents.

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The Others 

Germany, Turkey 2015 Ayşe Polat

The Kurdish province of Van is famous for its unique cats, which are the cultural symbol of the Kurds, Turks, and the Armenians. Van was the historical home of the Armenians until 1915 – the year of their deportation and murder. Nowadays, all that remains are the ruins of churches and a small number of inhabitants with Armenian roots, though most of them are scared to admit it. 34-year-old Ali speaks openly about his Armenian grandmother Piroze, whose last will and testament was not recognized by the imams. His uncle talks of “the others” when he refers to his own mother, despite carrying her passport photo wherever he goes. The film tracks down the traces of the cruel history and shows that, in William Faulkner’s words, “the past is never dead, it is not even past.”

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Purple: Give the Children the World

 

Ziazan

Armenia, Turkey 2014 Derya Durmaz

One day 4-year-old Armenian girl Ziazan decides to go on an adventure. She will sneak into Turkey inside her uncle's luggage. Will she be able to go over the closed borders between 2 countries and realize her adventure?

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Ice Cream

Turkey 2014 Serhat Karaaslan

On a hot summer day, children get ice cream in exchange for the stuff waiting in their houses to be delivered to the junkman, but Rojhat found another way!

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A Year Without My Parents

The Netherlands 2015 Els van Driel

Together with his uncle and cousin, 11-year-old Tareq escaped from war-torn Syria. After a long journey across Turkey, they undertook a dramatic 10-day voyage across the stormy sea to Italy, and from there to the Netherlands. Now Tareq has been in this new country for almost a year, and although his new classmates have accepted him and support him, he misses his parents. He regularly sends them video messages from his new home and hopes that the Dutch government will soon grant them asylum so that they can all be together again. As his new classmates admit, none of them can imagine being without their parents such a long time.

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Not Made of Sugar

The Netherlands 2015 Saskia Fris

Michelle loves to swim and would love to set out for the swimming pool in a new bikini. But she fears ridicule by her classmates. She is often bullied in school because of her body. She has already lost all confidence and begun to eat more junk food. But one day she said to herself, "Enough!" With the help of an expert on childhood obesity she adjusted her diet, began exercising more, and began drinking water instead of soft drinks. With the support of family and her best friend Noe, she hopes the transition to a healthy lifestyle will help her lose weight and bring back her confidence.

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New

The Netherlands 2014 Eefje Blankevoort

Tanans has only been in the Netherlands for a few weeks. He doesn’t speak the language, understands nothing of the local customs, and hasn’t made any friends yet. Tanans is Congolese, but he grew up in a refugee welcome zone in Uganda. Together with his family he came to the Netherlands as an “invited refugee.” In “New” we follow Tanans on his journey of discovery. For the first time he lives in a beautiful house, tries to find his balance on a bike, and speaks Dutch. But above all, he tries to make sense of this strange new world. This is often funny and amusing, and very exciting. For how do you make friends if you don’t speak the same language?

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Azad

Turkey 2015 Yakup Tekintangaç

Azad was forced to immigrate to İstanbul with his mother. Because his mother goes to work every day, she locks the door after leaving. Azad finds a way to keep his mind occupied