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18 to 28 March 2014

Barbican, Curzon Soho, Ritzy Brixton

Return to Homs

Closing Night Film and Reception

28 March at 18.30 at Ritzy Brixton

Abounaddara Collective Shorts + 'Emergency Cinema' Discussion

Presented with the New Statesman

26 March at 18.30 at Curzon Soho

Visit our Press page

To download the HRWFF London 2014 programme

and view the HRWFF London 2014 trailer on YouTube

Film Festival, March 18–28, 2014

Filmmaker(s): Various filmmakers
Year: 2014 / 90m
March 26

Abounaddara is a collective of filmmakers working towards providing an alternative image of Syrian society. It was founded in 2010 in opposition to the prevailing representations of Syria found in the Western media.

Filmmaker(s): Danis Tanovic
Year: 2013 / 74m
March 21 / 22

The latest drama from award-winning Bosnian director Danis Tanovic enlists a cast of non-professionals to reconstruct a harrowing personal ordeal that became a national scandal. An Episode in the Life of an Iron Picker is a story of courage in the face of hardship and injustice.

Filmmaker(s): Hisham Zaman
Year: 2013 / 105m
March 26 / 27

How far would you go to restore your family's honour? As the oldest son in his household, Siyar confronts that question with a vengeance after his older sister, Nermin, flees an arranged marriage, and he must atone for the slight.

Filmmaker(s): Rachel Boynton
Year: 2013 / 99m
March 22 / 23

A cautionary tale about the toll of American oil investment in West Africa, Big Men reveals the secretive worlds of both corporations and local communities in Nigeria and Ghana.

(UK premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Shaun Kadlec and Deb Tullmann
Year: 2012 / 84m
March 25 / 26

With intimate access to the lives of four young gay Cameroonians, Born This Way steps outside the genre of activist filmmaking and offers a vivid and poetic portrait of day-to-day life in modern Africa.

(UK premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Madeleine Sackler
Year: 2013 / 76m
March 20

Director Madeleine Sackler goes behind the scenes with the Belarus Free Theatre, an acclaimed troupe of imaginative and subversive performers who, in a country choked by censorship and repression, defy Europe's last remaining dictatorship.

(Exclusive preview)
Filmmaker(s): Katy Chevigny and Ross Kauffman, directors; Marilyn Ness, producer
Year: 2013 / 89m
March 24 / 25

When atrocities are committed in countries held hostage by ruthless dictators, Human Rights Watch sends in the Emergencies Team, a collection of fiercely intelligent individuals who document war crimes and report them to the world.

(Exclusive preview)
Filmmaker(s): Iva Radivojevic
Year: 2014 / 73m
March 24 / 26

A visual essay in five parts, Evaporating Borders is told through a series of vignettes that explore the lives of asylum seekers and political refugees on the island of Cyprus.

Filmmaker(s): Rachel Beth Anderson and Tim Grucza
Year: 2013 / 80m
March 25 / 27

First to Fall is an intimate story of friendship, sacrifice, and the madness of war. It bears witness to the irreversible transformation of two friends, and the price they pay for their convictions.

(UK premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Jasmila Zbanic
Year: 2013 / 72m
March 23 / 24

Jasmila Zbanic's For Those Who Can Tell No Tales follows an Australian tourist as she discovers the silent legacy of wartime atrocities in a seemingly idyllic town on the border of Bosnia and Serbia.

Filmmaker(s): Can Candan
Year: 2013 / 82m
March 21 / 22

What happens when your child comes out to you? My Child answers this question as it introduces a courageous and inspiring group of mothers and fathers in Turkey, who are parents of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender individuals.

(UK premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Khalo Matabane
Year: 2013 / 84m
March 21 / 22

South African filmmaker Khalo Matabane was an idealistic teenager with fanciful ideas about a post-apartheid era of freedom and justice when the great icon of liberation Nelson Mandela was released from prison in 1990. In a personal odyssey encompassing an imaginary letter to Mandela and conversations with politicians, activists, intellectuals, and artists, Matabane questions the meaning of freedom, reconciliation, and forgiveness.

(UK premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Talal Derki
Year: 2013 / 87m
March 28

Filmed between August 2011 and August 2013, Return to Homs is a remarkably intimate portrait of a group of young revolutionaries in the city of Homs in western Syria. They dream of their country being free from President Bashar al-Assad and fight for justice through peaceful demonstrations.

(UK premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Zeina Daccache
Year: 2013 / 80m
March 21 / 22

This engaging tragicomic documentary follows women inmates through a 10-month drama therapy/theater project set up in 2012 by director Zeina Daccache at the Baabda Prison in Lebanon.

(Exclusive preview)
Filmmaker(s): Berit Madsen
Year: 2013 / 88m
March 21 / 22

Sepideh is a young Iranian woman who dares to dream—of a future as an astronaut.

Filmmaker(s): Richie Mehta
Year: 2013 / 96m
March 23 / 24

In New Delhi, 12-year-old Siddharth is sent by his father Mahendra to work in a factory in another province to help support their family. Siddharth is supposed to come home in one month for the Diwali festival. When he fails to return or call, his distraught father begins a desperate search to find his missing son.

(UK premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Mano Khalil
Year: 2013 / 107m
March 23 / 24

The Beekeeper relates the touching story of Ibrahim Gezer, a Kurdish beekeeper from southeast Turkey, and his unusual experience of integration into the seemingly conservative heart of today's Switzerland.

(UK premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Sara Ishaq
Year: 2013 / 64m
March 26 / 27

After 10 years in Scotland, Sara Ishaq travels back to her childhood home of Yemen and takes her camera along. She hopes to feel at home in the place that was once so close to her heart, but the complications soon become clear.

Filmmaker(s): Jehane Noujaim
Year: 2013 / 104m
March 18

From the overthrow of Hosni Mubarak's 30-year-long dictatorship in 2011 to the military's removal of Egypt's first democratically elected president in 2013, we follow a group of Egyptian activists as they confront the authorities and security forces to build a new society of conscience. The Square is a truly immersive experience, transporting the viewer into the intense emotional drama and personal stories behind the news.

(European premiere)
Filmmaker(s): Edet Belzberg
Year: 2014 / 114m
March 25 / 27

Watchers of the Sky interweaves five stories of remarkable courage, compassion, and determination, while setting out to uncover the forgotten life of Raphael Lemkin—the man who created the word "genocide" and believed the law could protect the world from mass atrocities.