So, continuing our cheery theme, A Journey Through Hell opens our final day of the Seattle Human Rights Film Festival, Sunday, Feb. 8, 11:30 am, at the Northwest Film Forum (where all except our closing film will be). A Journey Though Hell chronicles the dangerous journey by boat of Somali and Ehiopian migrants risking their lives being smuggled to seek refuge in Yemen.
Then at 1 pm, a double bill. Argentina: Turning Around is about Argentina’s grassroots response to an economic meltdown following an embrace of globalization that, instead of making everyone rich, caused the economy to collapse.
Playing with Argentina: Turning Around at 1 pm is Voice of a Mountain, documenting “the lives of rural Guatemalan coffee farmers who took up arms against their government in a civil war that lasted 36 years” and their life after the war.
Another double bill at 3:15 pm, our final show at the Northwest Film Forum. Come Back to Sudan is about three of Sudan’s “lost boys” who came to America as refugees returning years later as young men to find their families and help their families rebuild.
As We Forgive, our second feature at 3:15 pm is about the incredible concept of not only being asked to forgive those who murdered your family in the genocide in Rwanda, but living in the same community with them and letting them help rebuild.
Then we have a break until 7 pm, when we move our festival over to the SIFF Cinema for our closing night film, Sand and Sorrow, on Darfur, executive produced and narrated by George Clooney. Chronicling the efforts of people like Samantha Power and New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristoff to call attention to and ask for action to prevent the genocide in Darfur, and including then Senator Barack Obama speaking out at a rally in DC on Darfur.
Our regular festival will conclude then, but we are co-sponsoring, in partnership with the Global Fund for Women, a showing of Pray the Devil Back to Hell at the Varsity Theater in the U District, Tuesday, Feb. 10 at 7 pm. Pray the Devil Back to Hell is about the courage of thousands of Liberian women who come together to pray for peace and stage a silent protest for an end of a bloody civil war outside the Presidential Palace which helps bring about an agreement during the stalled peace talks.
Apologies for the rough cut of all these blogs, and it’s particularly hard getting this last one off in the middle of actually volunteering for the film festival!