This international independent series samples the best of international documentary.
My So-Called Enemy (#709) Duration: 1:26:32 STEREO (Secondary audio: none)
Spanning 7 years, this film follows 6 Palestinian and Israeli teenage girls committed to justice and mutual understanding after participating in a women's leadership program called Building Bridges for Peace. This heart and mind-opening film documents how the young women's transformative experience of knowing their "enemies" as human beings in the US meets with the realities of their lives back home in the Middle East. A film about building bridges of understanding in our own communities, it offers audiences profound messages about tolerance, inclusion and respect, conflict prevention and resolution - and the vital role of women in peacemaking.
El General (#710) Duration: 1:21:58 STEREO (Secondary audio: none)
Past and present collide as award-winning filmmaker Natalia Almada brings to life audio recordings she inherited about her great-grandfather Plutarco Elias Calles, a revolutionary general who became Mexico's president in 1924. In his time, Calles was called "El Bolshevique" and "El Jefe Maximo" (the foremost chief). Today, he is remembered as "el Quema-Curas" (priest-burner) and as a dictator who ruled through puppet presidents until he was exiled in 1936. Through Almada's grandmother's recordings, El General moves between memories of a daughter grappling with history's portrait of her father and the weight of his legacy on the country today.
Diamond in the Dunes (#711) Duration: 53:57 STEREO (Secondary audio: none)
This film is the true story of hope and baseball in China's Xinjiang Province - a region harshly divided between an indigenous Muslim minority and the ruling Han Chinese. It follows Parhat Ablat, a 20-year-old Uyghur shepherd, as he attends the region's racially segregated Xinjiang University and forms an integrated baseball team.
Parhat is on a fraught quest to raise his people out of what he calls their "spirit sickness." While at the helm of Xinjiang University's first mixed-race team, he also starts a baseball program at a minority elementary school. For Parhat, baseball is more than a game; it's a vehicle for spiritual transformation. Finally, after a year of practice in the shadow of tense ethnic relations, Parhat and the university team travel 2000 miles for their only game of the season - against a team of Tibetans on the Qinghai Plateau.
Arusi Persian Wedding (#510) Duration: 55:05 STEREO
Set against the turbulent relationship between the US and Iran, this program captures the struggle and excitement as a couple plans a Persian Islamic wedding in Iran.
Before The Revolution (#712) Duration: 56:46 STEREO (Secondary audio: none)
Dan Shadur's brother can't forget the day in November 1978 when he stood on the balcony of his family's apartment in Tehran and watched thousands of demonstrators clash with tanks and soldiers of the Shah's regime. His mother stood behind him, trembling, baby Dan in her arms. The next day, the Israeli embassy ordered the Shadur family, along with thousands of other Israeli citizens, to evacuate the city. The Islamic Revolution had begun. Dan's father stayed behind, and only managed to escape in 1979 with the help of others from the Israeli Embassy and the Mossad. Two years later, he died, leaving nothing but some 8 millimeter film for his sons to remember Tehran by. Director Dan Shadur is 30 - the same age as his father had been that fateful year. He set out to discover the man his father was, and the humble beginnings he imagined his parents had had. Instead, he discovers the extravagant lives of led by many Israelis in pre-Revolution Iran, and of Israel's intimate connection with the Shah's violent and corrupt regime. Using exclusive 8mm footage and rare television archival clips, Before the Revolution offers a glimpse of Israel's dramas in the Middle East, and illuminates the cycles of change in the region, all the way up to the Arab Spring of 2011. The film tracks one of the first great modern first popular uprisings in the Middle East through the people who experienced it firsthand without realizing its historic import or its ongoing consequences.
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Peace Versus Justice (#501) Duration: 52:55 STEREO
This documentary examines the role of the International Criminal Court in the trial against rebel leader Joseph Kony, whose Lord' Resistance Army (LRA) has spread death and destruction in Uganda, and battled the government of president Museveni, for nearly 20 years now. But what if the victims of these crimes don't want the ICC's version of justice? The film also takes a look at the problems of applying western concepts of justice to other countries and continents.
Ice People (#713) Duration: 1:26:46 STEREO (Secondary audio: none)
No one gets to Antarctica by accident. For the few scientific teams who brave this beautiful and silent landscape, it feels like another planet. Their discoveries yield secrets about the Earth's past and future, and prompt questions about our place in the world. This documentary captures the experience of vastness and claustrophobia, of excitement and waiting, and of a life still set to nature's rhythm.
Here Comes Uncle Joe (#714) Duration: 56:46 STEREO (Secondary audio: none)
He is not their uncle, and his name is not Joe. But to the old ladies of An-dong, a rural community in southeastern Korea, Uncle Joe is almost the only contact they have with the modern world. As the young leave these rural areas to acquire higher education and to find high salary jobs in the cities, there are no services or people to support old people. In this situation, Uncle Joe becomes the only man for the old.
However, his road taken isn't always happy. Because of their advanced years, Joe often encounters his old customer-friends' misery and death. Moreover, as he reflects on his life, he faces his inner conflict and shame. In this film, we see how Uncle Joe serves these communities with humor and attention, how love and friendship are infused in life, and how he overcomes his conflicts with his friends.
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