The films in this collection strive to bring to our attention highly contested and still bleeding histories. They use the form of documentary with all its creativity to counter pervasive modes of power, states of impunity, directed forgetfulness, and the silencing of traumatic memories.
New Currents Collections
Especially curated by Film Platform, aim to explore new directions and developments in documentary craftsmanship. They are organized according to major aesthetic trends and fields of influence which permeate documentary filmmaking today.
In a country where killers are celebrated as heroes, the filmmakers challenge unrepentant death squad leader Anwar Congo and his friends to dramatise their role in genocide. But their idea of being in a movie is not to provide testimony for a documentary: they want to be stars in their favourite film genres—gangster, western, musical. They write the scripts. They play themselves. And they play their victims. This is a cinematic fever dream, an unsettling journey deep into the imaginations of mass-murderers and the shockingly banal regime of corruption and impunity they inhabit.
Through Joshua Oppenheimer’s work filming perpetrators of the Indonesian genocide, a family of survivors discovers how their son was murdered and the identity of the men who killed him. The youngest brother is determined to break the spell of silence and fear under which the survivors live, and so confronts the men responsible for his brother’s murder – something unimaginable in a country where killers remain in power.
Rajai, a Palestinian “service” taxi driver ferries his passengers between East Jerusalem and Ramallah for 3 shekels a ride. En route, he either gives you insight into the daily challenges faced by Palestinians under Israeli occupation, or he drives you crazy. Or both. His take on the Intifada, suicide bombings and life in general is mirrored in his passengers—which include prominent Palestinian political and cultural figures, and more than one delightful cameo appearance in this blurry document of fact and fiction.
Tracing the emigrations of his family over more than half a century, this riveting 3D documentary epic from acclaimed expatriate Iraqi filmmaker Samir pays moving homage to the frustrated democratic dreams of a people successively plagued by the horrors of dictatorship, war, and foreign occupation.