Human Rights Watch International Film Festival

I came home from class tonight to an email in my inbox, announcing that the International House at Penn is screeing selections from the 5th edition of the Human Rights Watch International Film Festival.

The Human Rights Watch International Film Festival has become a leading venue for distinguished fiction, documentary and animated films and videos with a distinctive human rights theme. Through the eyes of committed and courageous filmmakers, it showcases the heroic stories of activists and survivors from all over the world. The works featured help to put a human face on threats to individual freedom and dignity, and celebrate the power of the human spirit and intellect to prevail.

They will screen a different movie every day for the next four days at 7 pm. General admission is $7 (if you’re a member of the International House you get in for free).

Sorry for the late posting on this one, but I only found out about it today. You can find all the details about the different films after the jump.

Wednesday, January 31 at 7pm
Switch Off (Apaga y Vamonos)
dir. Manel Mayol, Spain, 2005, BetaSP, 87 mins, color, Spanish and Mapudungun w/ English subtitles

In 2004, Endesa, Spain’s largest hydroelectric company constructed the world’s third largest dam which flooded the Ralco Valley in Chile and forced the “exchange” of whole villages to much higher ground. Protestors found themselves arrested under Pinochet’s anti-terrorist laws, facing anonymous witnesses whose identities are concealed from even the court.

Thursday, February 1 at 7pm
dir. Martin Marecek & Martin Skalsk�, Czech Republic, 2005, BetaSP, 75 mins, color, Czech, Russian, English and Azerbaijani w/ English subtitles

Baku, Azerbaijan, the site of the world’s first oil well, is once again a focus for foreign investors as the origin of a major oil and gas pipeline project developed by an international consortium led by BP. In Source, a small, mobile and highly inventive Czech film crew travels around the country to investigate and record the impact of this most recent energy boom.

Friday, February 2 at 7pm
Black Gold
dir. Nick Francis and Marc Francis, UK, 2006, BetaSP, 78 mins, color, Amharic, Oromiffa and English w/ English subtitles

Tadesse Meskela is on a one-man mission to save his Ethiopian coffee cooperative’s 75,000 struggling farmers from bankruptcy.

Saturday, February 3 at 7pm
Dreaming Lhasa
dir. Ritu Sarin and Tenzing Sonam, India/UK, 2005, BetaSP, 91 mins, color, Tibetan and English w/ English subtitles

Karma has come to Dharamsala, India to make a film about former political prisoners who escaped from Tibetbut ends up joining one of her interviewees, Dhondup on a quest to fulfill his dying mother’s last wish.

Academy Award Nominee for Best Documentary
Sunday, February 4 at 7pm
Iraq in Fragments
dir. James Longley, USA, 2006, 96 mins, 35mm, color, Arabic and Kurdish w/ English subtitles

This documentary shadows ordinary Iraqi citizens in three crucial yet fractured regions – Baghdad, the Shiite south and the Kurdish north – as they struggle through a chaotic present and face a distant, uncertain future.

Free members (except Internationalist level); $5 Internationalist members, students + seniors, $7 general admission.

Presented in conjunction with Human Rights Watch International Film Festival and co-sponsored by The Solomon Asch Center for the Study of Ethnopolitical Conflict, the Greenfield Intercultural Center and the Middle East Center at the University of Pennsylvania

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