by HRW #Cinema twitter@gaiaitalia_eng #HRWFF
Many filmmakers, protagonists, Human Rights Watch researchers, and activists will take part in in-depth post-screening Q&A and panel discussions at the Barbican, BFI Southbank, and Regent Street Cinema.
The festival will open at the Barbican on March 14 with Hans Pool’s Bellingcat – Truth in a Post-Truth World, which follows the revolutionary rise of the “citizen investigative journalist” collective known as Bellingcat, dedicated to redefining breaking news by exploring the promise of open source investigation. The screening will be followed by an in-depth discussion with Hans Pool and Bellingcat founder Eliot Higgins.
“At its heart, the work of Human Rights Watch is front-line investigations by expert researchers who check and cross-check facts,” said John Biaggi, director of the Human Rights Watch Film Festival. “In this so-called ‘post-truth era’, it is particularly relevant for us to open the 23rd edition of the festival with a film that considers the possibilities and implications of citizen journalism. We are excited to open with ‘Bellingcat – Truth in a Post-Truth World,’ a compelling look at the methods and means of this media disrupter”.
This highly skilled and controversial collective exposes the truth behind global news stories – from identifying the exact location of an Islamic State murder through analysis of a video distributed on YouTube, to tracking the story behind the mysterious poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal in the United Kingdom. Bellingcat hunts down answers using social media, reconstruction techniques, and audio analysis. From his East Midlands home the de facto leader, Eliot Higgins, and his international team of volunteer truth-seekers put newspapers, networks, and governments to the test, shedding light on the fight for journalistic integrity in the era of fake news and alternative facts.
“In citizen journalism…trust is generated not by the brand name or the glory of the institution, it’s generated through transparency,” said Jay Rosen film subject, Bellingcat – Truth in a Post-Truth World.
In the closing night film, the festival returns to one of its perennial themes: the promise of movement-building, action, and the fight for justice in Rehad Desai’s stirring documentary Everything Must Fall, in which students mobilize demonstrations across South Africa with a call to lower university fees and, ultimately, for the decolonization of the entire education system. “We have a responsibility not just to come here to study, but to go back in our communities and make sure that we are uplifting and empowering them,” said Shaeera Kalla, a student leader featured in the film… More to read
(2nd february, 2019)