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Songs of Repression


At the foot of the Andes Mountains in Chile lies the picturesque German colony of Colonia Dignidad (Colony of Dignity). However, the beauty of the place belies a grim past. In 1961, a German preacher named Paul Schäfer and his congregation moved to Chile with the stated aim of helping the poor. They established the colony, which transformed into a closed sect where child abuse, collective beatings and slave-like living conditions were an ongoing reality for 45 years. Many in the colony assisted Pinochet’s dictatorship in torturing and killing political prisoners and burying them in mass graves on their own 40,000-acre land. In 2007, Schäfer was arrested and the colony opened up. During that process, the community changed its name

Festival Participation

  • CPH:DOX - 2020
  • CPH:DOX - 2020
    Politiken:Danish:Dox Award
  • FIFIGROT - 2020
    Special Mention
  • Reykjavik International Film Festival - 2020
    A Different Tomorrow Award
  • FICValdivia - 2020
    Main Award in National Competition
  • Cork IFF - 2020
    Best Cinematic Documentary Award
  • Budapest International Documentary Festival - 2021
    Special Mention

Additional Materials

Distribution Company

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