Five documentaries to prick the conscience and open your eyes are screening
In late 2016, director and cinematographer James L Brown travelled to Jordan to spend time in the Zaatari and Azraq refugee camps, as well as surrounding cities. Brown was introduced to the residents of the camps and found himself invited into lives and homes where he was able to conduct intimate interviews with the people he met there. The result was Watan, a portrait of the refugee experience that shows the tragedy of the limbo that the victims of global conflict must endure.
Watan is screening during the Refugee Film Festival on World Refugee Day. The is presented by the Refugee Council of Australia and Cinema Nova.
It’s a short but potent program this year. Opening-night film is Hope Road in which a Sydney-based refugee from the Sudanese civil war, Zacharia, wants to build a school in his village in South Sudan, and embarks on a 40-day charity walk from the Queensland border to Sydney to raise funds.
Stop the Boats tells the story of how Australia used a three-word slogan to demonise people seeking asylum, fleeing war and persecution, condemning them to indefinite offshore detention and torture in prison camps on Manus Island and Nauru.
Human Flow is the epic film by artist Ai Weiwei that illuminates the struggles of 65 million people around the world who are displaced victims, capturing the suffering and pain felt by refugees worldwide.
And Rifles or Graffiti chronicles Morocco's 40-year occupation of Western Sahara and the Sahrawis' nonviolent activism to pressure Morocco into complying with a UN-sanctioned referendum on self-determination.
Screenings are at Cinema Nova. To book tickets, click the Dates and Times tab.