Documentary Film Series, April-May 2008. The OSA Archivum presents 7 outstanding documentaries in its spring film series. These feature length creative documentary films address a wide range of contemporary social issues: exile, democracy and dictatorship, living under surveillance, prostitution, generation next, old age.

The screenings will be held every Tuesday from April 15 through May 27, 2008, 6 PM.
Location: OSA Archivum, Galeria Centralis
Films are screened with original sound and English subtitles.
admission free
Additional info: Anna Kövecsi, Ezt a címet a spamrobotok ellen védjük. Engedélyezze a Javascript használatát, hogy megtekinthesse. , or (36 1) 327-3250

Verzio Favorites

A selection 3 documentaries from the Main Program of Verzio 4 International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival, organized by OSA in 2007.

Tuesday, 6pm, April 15
Bridge Over the Wadi
Barak Heymann & Tomer Heymann / Israel / 2006 / 57'
The screening series will be launched by the 2007 Audience Award winner of Verzio4 Film Festival. The film follows a joint Arab-Israeli initiative to establish a bilingual elementary school in Kara, a village in Israel's Wadi Valley. The school, which is called Bridge over the Wadi, has places for 50 Jewish and 50 Arab students, but is located in the Arab part of the valley. The filmmakers observe how students, faculty and parents struggle to coexist peacefully during the first exciting year. Some parents however feel reciprocal integration is going too far when students are asked to participate in each other's religious festivities.

Tuesday, 6pm, April 22
Please, Vote for Me
Weijun Chen / China / 2006 / 55'
In an elementary school in the city of Wuhan in central China, eight-year old children compete for the position of Class Monitor. Their parents, devoted to their only child, join in and start to influence the results. An experiment with democracy in China. Please Vote for Me was made as part of the "Why Democracy?" documentary project using film to start a global debate about democracy, with productions by independent award-winning filmmakers from around the world, including China, India, Japan, Liberia, USA, Bolivia, Denmark, Afghanistan, Egypt, Pakistan and Russia.

Tuesday, 6pm, April 29
Exile Family Movie
Arash T. Riahi / Austria / 2006 / 92'
A family’s story, typically crazy and exceptional at the same time. A film about home and exile, parents, grandparents, brothers and sisters and all the other relatives, close and distant, in an extended Persian family. Some of them emigrated to Europe or America, though the majority have stayed in Iran. Regardless of all the danger involved, they secretly meet after 20 years at a place which won’t raise suspicion among the Iranian authorities: Mecca. They come from America, Sweden, Austria and Iran to laugh, argue, cook and celebrate. This is accompanied by an excessive amount of hugging and kissing, and also a clash between Muslim and Western cultures. (by Arash)

Verzio Submission Selection

The 4 documentaries in this group are a selection from the several hundred submitted films that were not included in the Main Program due to thematic and quantity restrictions. These excellent award winning social documentaries however are a must see for everyone interested in creative, critical documentary cinema.

Tuesday, 6pm, May 6
Natalia Meshchaninova / Russia / 2007 / 75’
How does beauty age? Has charisma got a use by date? Herbarium portrays a brief but significant period in the lives of old people living in an elderly home. A mature women’s beauty contest turns a mundane day upside down and tests delicate social structures. In this pageant, the judges are not satisfied with external beauty alone, but the contestants also have to captivate their audience – some do it by speech, others by singing and dancing. A rare and unusual documentary that flows like a Slavic folk song – beautiful and melancholic while laughing spiritedly in the face of grief.

Tuesday, 6pm, May 13
The Great Indian School Show
Avinash Deshpande / India / 2006 / 53’
The Mahatma Gandhi Centennial Sindhu High School in Nagpur is like no other. Here, 185 close circuit television cameras keep a hawk’s watch on what’s going on in every classroom, staff room, canteen and playground. The cameras are constantly monitored by the principal. The film shows how surveillance affects the psyche of both students and teachers. The visual narrative moves back and forth from the classrooms to the corridors of the school where every student and faculty member is conscious of how to behave because he or she is under constant surveillance. In the ‘control’ room the principal watches and takes great delight in communicating with teachers and students, pointing out flaws, making suggestions or issuing directives.

Tuesday, 6pm, May 20
On A Tightrope
Petr Lom / Norway, Canada / 2006 / 60‘
In an orphanage in the Chinese province of Xinjiang, children study tightrope walking. The children are Uighurs, the largest Muslim minority in China. Fearing the Uighurs' separatist movement, China rules with an iron fist in Xinjiang. Youngsters are forbidden to profess their religion, and the regime jumps at every opportunity to glorify the unity of China. Walking the tightrope is an ancient Uighur tradition, and all the children of the orphanage practice to become the best, for they believe that they can ascend to a higher level in life if they master the art of tightrope walking and become professional entertainers.

Tuesday, 6pm, May 27
Sex Slaves
Ric Esther Bienstock / Canada / 2005 / 89’
Sex Slaves is a gripping documentary shedding light upon the global sex trade of women, a major source of which being the former Soviet Bloc. The film takes viewers into the shadowy, multi-billion dollar world of sex trafficking. Part cinema verité, part investigation, Sex Slaves gives a human face to the victims of this most inhuman industry. From the villages of Moldova and Ukraine, to underground brothels and discotheques in Turkey, where many women are trafficked and forced into prostitution, we witness the ruthless world of modern sex slavery.

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