Human Rights Watch Film Festival 2016: Riveting Accounts of Enduring Struggles

This year’s Human Rights Watch Film Festival features movies highlighting women’s rights issues from around the globe. From Hooligan Sparrow (Dir: Nanfu Wang) with activist Ye Haiyan as the protagonist, to Jackson (Dir: Maisie Crow) detailing the crisis of abortion access in Mississippi, to Starless Dreams (Dir: Kristi Jacobson) that portrays young adult women in a Teheran prison, to Tempestad (Dir: Tatiana Huezo) depicting the troubles confronting women in Mexico and The Uncondemned (Dirs: Michele Mitchell, Nick Louver) which takes us back to Rwanda in 1997 when rape was recognized as a war crime – this year’s film season could not be more aptly themed.

A still from “Starless Dreams”: Human Rights Watch Film Festival 2016

Also of special mention are movies on LGBT rights – Growing Up Coy (Dir: Eric Juhola) and Chinese Closet (Dir: Sophia Luvarà). While the former is about a six year old transgender daughter’s legal rights, the latter throws some lights on untold stories of gay men and women within Chinese traditional society.

Other films include Almost Sunrise (Dir: Michael Collins) surrounding the theme of suicide and desperation among military veterans, Do Not Resist (Dir: Craig Atkinson) highlighting the growing militarist nature of American police culture, and The Crossing (Dir. George Kurian) about the perilous journeys of Syrian refugees.

Human Rights Watch is introducing the filmmakers/researchers after the screenings and planning to engage the audience through in-depth discussions on topical issues of human rights.

This is the 27th edition of the film festival taking place June 11 through June 18. Tickets are on sale now, here.