The shortlist for the 5th annual Irish Council for Civil Liberties Human Rights Film Awards was today (Wednesday 05 June 2013) announced by a jury of leading names in Irish cinema, including Oscar-nominated screenwriter and director Kirsten Sheridan.
The cream of entries to Ireland’s only human rights film competition, the five shortlisted films cover a diverse range of issues at home and further afield.
Announcing the shortlist today, Jury Member Kirsten Sheridan said:
“The five films shortlisted for this year’s Awards run a gamut of themes from the subjugation of women during armed conflict to the empowerment of people with disabilities. The strength of the human spirit and the capacity of a human rights based approach to protect the most vulnerable members of society is a common thread that runs through all of them.'
“The Jury would like to congratulate all the filmmakers on reaching the shortlist of this prestigious competition, and we look forward to our deliberations to decide the winning film.”
The shortlist will be the subject of an exclusive Gala Awards screening at the Light House Cinema on the evening of June 20th 2013, where the Jury will announce the winning film.
Director: Trish McAdam
A campaign video for Front Line Defenders, No Enemies takes as its inspiration Chinese human rights defender Lui Xiaobo’s renowned I Have No Enemies speech of Christmas Day 2009, when he was sentenced to 11 years' imprisonment. Set against spartan graphics, the film gives elegant shape to Liu's journey from arrest to conviction. His words – spoken by Salman Rushdie and Seamus Heaney among others – are a graceful and stoical declaration of love - love for his wife and for life, unencumbered by and transcending the oppression he faces.
To view No Enemies, please click the following link: https://vimeo.com/72662411
Director: Martin Smith
The 'a day in the life of' motif is not a new idea in filmmaking. Until you see Jimmy that is. Following the daily routine of disability rights campaigner Jimmy McIntosh, MBE, award-winning Scottish filmmaker Martin Smith dispenses with the conventional methods of observational documentary film making, where the subject is often objectified for and by the audience. Instead Smith adopts a truly unique style of directing that allows the viewer to see the world according to Jimmy. With a camera at eye level and another attached to his wheelchair, Jimmy is transformed from subject of the camera’s gaze to its master. Jimmy thus becomes an innovative and intimate portrait of one man, as seen from the inside out.
JIMMY trailer from Martin Smith on Vimeo.
The Rattle of Benghazi
Director: Paco Torres
Say Benghazi and Dublin in the same sentence and it would be a struggle to imagine any type of synergy. But that is exactly what Dublin-based, Spanish director Paco Torres has achieved in his acclaimed short film The Rattle of Benghazi. Our Dublin cityscape becomes transformed into the setting for the 2011 uprising against the government of Muammar Gaddafi. The geographical mash-up is not the only duality at play here as the film, told from the perspective of a brother and sister, juxtaposes the chaos of war with the innocence of childhood. While the film opens with a seemingly innocuous scene of the children at play, what unfolds becomes altogether more harrowing, as the realities of war intrude on and envelop the siblings’ lives.
The Value of Women in the Congo
Director: Dearbhla Glynn
War has torn Eastern Congo apart for nearly two decades it is the deadliest war since World War 2. One of the more sinister repercussions of the war is that violence against women has reached epic proportions. In an effort to look at the root cause, 'The value of Women in The Congo' explores the experience of the victims of this violence as well as the perspective of the perpetrators, warlords and high-ranking commandants. What emerges is an arresting and brutal account of how war ravages the land and its people and leaves few victors – least of all women, whose value is often rendered worthless.Warning: contains accounts of sexual violence which may upset some people, regardless of age
The Value of Women in the Congo from Anna Maria O'Flanagan on Vimeo.
Mums & Dad
Director: Dara deFaoite A lesbian couple and gay man become the proud parents of a beautiful baby boy. This short documentary explores the roles and relationships that exist between a mother, Ruth, a father, Jer, and their six-year old son Stephen, reflecting a significant aspect of the diversity of family types in Ireland today. At its heart Mums and Dad is a story of love, loss, trust and respect, however this short documentary also
contextualizes the challenges faced by LGBT parents and the right of every individual to make responsible family decisions regardless of marital status or sexual orientation.