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Challenging Conventional Wisdom

Amnesty International Film Festival to screen 27 human rights documentaries

Published on LatinoLA: May 14, 2003


Challenging Conventional Wisdom


The Amnesty International Film Festival?co-presented by The City of West Hollywood announced its 2003 program. 27 human rights documentary, short, and feature films from 10 countries will screen at the Directors Guild of America May 28 through June 1, 2003.

Of note in the 2003 line-up is the special preview screening of the new documentary Discovering Dominga, in which a young mother from Iowa learns that she is a survivor of one of the most horrific episodes in Guatemala?s bloody civil war. Denise Becker?s journey of discovery leads her back to Guatemala where she learns that she was born Dominga sic Ruiz, and fled the Rio Negro Massacres at the age of nine while soldiers slaughtered her family and community. ?This unique personal perspective on Guatemala?s troubled past is a real jewel,? said Festival Producer Dennis Palmieri. Discovering Dominga will air nationally on P.O.V. this summer.

This year?s program also includes a number groundbreaking films that openly challenge conventional wisdom, and in some cases, government policy and veracity. Bus 174, for example, uses stock footage from Brazilian news broadcasts in a riveting chronicle of the hijacking of a city bus in Rio that had the entire country glued to their TVs as police bungled the tense situation.

The Amnesty International Film Festival is proud to welcome the participation of the Latino Museum of History, Art, and Culture as an educational partner to the Festival, whose support will make possible free admission to all screenings for students at LA Unified high schools, along with other educational programming.

?Fundamentally, the Festival is an educational project,? said Juan Gomez Qui?ones, Chair of the Museum?s Board of Trustees. ?We are proud to help provide our LA communities with a chance to learn about human rights and social issues in a comfortable and familiar way?through the art of film.? ?We are delighted to able to provide students with this opportunity, and we are deeply grateful to the Latino Museum,? added Palmieri.

In addition to 27 remarkable pieces of film and video, Amnesty International will also bring filmmakers to present their work for several of the screenings. ?What many people don?t realize about human rights documentary filmmakers is that they often have to risk more than their time and money to make these films,? said Palmieri. ?And while the films speak for themselves, we?re proud to offer audiences the opportunity to discuss issues and experiences with the filmmakers who crafted them.?

Patricia Flynn will be on hand for her film Discovering Dominga; Jamie Doran will take questions after the screening of Afghan Massacre, John Smihula will discuss Hidden in Plain Sight?s challenge to the U.S. Army?s School of the America?s, and AFI film student Tanja Mairitsch will introduce her short film Fueling the Fire.

Although the Festival?s official program screens entirely at the Directors Guild of America, the Festival will co-host a free screening of Arundhati Roy?s Dam/age with UCLA World Arts and Cultures at UCLA?s Royce Hall on Tuesday, May 27; Ms. Roy will be on hand to speak after the film; this event is free and open to the public. And as part of its education partnership with the Latino Museum, the Festival will host a special encore presentation of Discovering Dominga to assembled students at Fairfax High School on Monday, May 2?this event is for Fairfax students only.

MAY 28 THROUGH JUNE 1, 2003
DIRECTORS GUILD OF AMERICA
7920 Sunset Blvd (Free Parking!)

Ticket Sales:

General Admission: $8
West Hollywood Residents $6
Amnesty Int?l Members $6
La Unified Public School Students Free!
Other Students (W/ Valid Id) $4

Full-Festival Passes:

General Admission: $45
West Hollywood Residents $35
Amnesty Int?l Members $35
Other Students (W/ Valid Id) $25

For advance ticket sales (strongly recommended) and group sales, please call 310-815-0450.

For complete schedule information and film descriptions, see http://www.amnestyusa.org/filmfest

FILM SCHEDULE OVERVIEW:

Weds. May 28 - 7:30 PM

OPENING NIGHT EVENT
?The Killing Fields?
Director Roland Joff? will be honored by Amnesty International
DGA 1
Free! Advance reservations required: RSVP to 310-815-0450

Thurs. May 29

4:00 PM
?Reclaiming Justice? and ?Walking Towards Dawn?
DGA 3

7:00 PM
?Burma: Anatomy of Terror? and ?A Monk?s Voice?
DGA 3

9:00 PM
?Sociedad Anonima? and ?Life on Christopher Street? and
?Tina Machida in Zimbabwe?
DGA 3

Fri May 30

4:00 PM
?State of Denial?
DGA 3

6:30 PM
?Seen But Not Heard? and ?Death on a Friendly Border?
DGA 3

7:00 PM
?Hidden in Plain Sight?
Post-screening discussion with filmmaker
DGA 2

8:30 PM
?My Terrorist?
DGA 3

9:00 PM
?Afghan Massacre?
Post-screening discussion with filmmaker
DGA 2

Sat. May 31

2:00 PM
?Ah the Money, the Money, the Money: The Battle for Salt Spring? and
?Respire?
DGA 3

5:00 PM
?To Free the Slaves?
DGA 3

7:00 PM
?State of Denial?
DGA 3

7:30 PM
?Discovering Dominga?
Post-screening discussion with filmmaker
DGA 2

9:00 PM
?The Day My God Died? and ?Fueling the Fire?
DGA 3

9:30 PM
?Bus 174?
DGA 2

Sun. June 1

?Bombies? and ?The Cambodia Trust?
DGA 3

5:00 PM
?In Whose Interest? and ?The New Rulers of the World?
DGA 3

7:00 PM
?The Murder of Emmett Till? and ?Fueling the Fire?
DGA 3







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