2012 Competition Shortlist

The shortlist for the 4th annual Irish Council for Civil Liberties Human Rights Film Awards was today (Wednesday 30 May 2012) announced by a celebrity jury, including Oscar winner Brenda Fricker, Oscar nominated director Kirsten Sheridan and Senator David Norris.

Announcing the shortlist today, Jury Member Kirsten Sheridan said:

 “The six films shortlisted in this year’s ICCL Human Rights Film Awards focus sharply on the need to improve respect for the human rights of vulnerable groups. The “stars” of this year’s films are dissidents, exploited labourers, children separated from their parents, same-sex couples reluctant to express their love and couples grappling with adoption dilemmas. Our shortlisted filmmakers capture the dignity of these vulnerable people as they struggle for the respect to which they are entitled.”

The shortlist will be the subject of an exclusive Gala Awards screening at the Light House Cinema on the evening of 28 June 2012, where the Jury will announce the winning film. The films may be viewed below. Please bear with us as we source the online films from the filmmakers.


Hold on Tight (Extract)

Producer: Zlata Filipovic; Director: Anna Rodgers

Holding hands and kissing in public isn’t for everyone. When it comes to same-sex relationships, showing your love outside of the home is sometimes a complicated personal choice. This short documentary moves between the public and the private spaces in which lesbian and gay couples live, and explores small gestures of human connectedness. These gentle interactions not only carry a huge personal significance, but also the potent power to create social change. Yet for most people, being affectionate beyond the hall door isn’t intended as a political statement – it’s an expression of love. Due to restrictions the full film cannot be shown online at this time. Please see an extract below.


Machine Man

Director: Roser Corella

This documentary by Roser Corella is an elegant exploration of the role of manual human labour in a globalised 21st century world. The film follows the lives of various workers in Dhaka, the capital of Bangladesh, where millions of men and women carry out all manner of labour in the streets, factories, building sites and on the sea shore. These “machine men” are the engine that keeps this bustling metropolis running, and this film is a glimpse at the lives they lead. Due to restrictions the full film cannot be shown online at this time. Please see an extract below.


Chen Guangcheng - Caged Bird

Producer: Adam Shapiro; Director/Illustrator Trish McAdam

Chen Guangcheng, a blind, self-taught lawyer, began his human rights work in China by defending the economic rights of farmers and arguing for the right of the disabled. He was also active in exposing the practice of forced abortions and sterilizations in China’s Shangdong Province. Since 2005, Chen and his family have been subject to frequent prosecutions and periods of imprisonment and house arrest. This film, inspired by the poetry of Maya Angelou, and built around the animation of Trish McAdam, was made as part of a campaign by Front Line Defenders calling for an end to Chen Guancheng’s captivity. In May 2012, Chen and his family fled to the United States; however extended family members face continued harassment and pressure from the authorities.


Leave to Remain

Director: Anna Byrne

Since the late nineties, hundreds of unaccompanied minors have arrived in Ireland seeking refuge. These children are termed Separated Immigrant Children. Up until December 2010, these children were housed in residential hostels in the greater Dublin area. This is one man’s account of his experience in Ireland as a separated immigrant child.


Padres (Parents)

Director: Liz Lobato

In this charming short film by Spanish director Liz Lobato, we see the emotional struggle of a couple as they attempt to navigate Spain’s bureaucratic adoption process. Still wracked with doubt as to whether or not they are making the right choice, the adoption agency reveals at the last minute that their prospective adoptee is not alone, leaving the couple with an important choice to make.

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