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network 16/02/2017 - 02:00PM

Three border smashing #CPVOD titles available now!

Rejection, detention and dehumanization of migrants have led to rallying cries in the public sphere in recent days, with the issue of a Presidential executive order barring refugees and suspending students, visitors and green-card-holding legal residents from re-entering America. Families have been left divided and lives interrupted indefinitely as a result of a ban that is being derided as unlawful and irresponsible.

With their destinations uncertain and the world watching, the United Nations has estimated that 20,000 refugee lives’ currently hang in the balance as a direct result of this abrupt decision.

Now is a crucial time to remember that international migration and human rights have a storied history of intersecting, often with devastating consequences. Cinema Politica invites you to revisit our cinematic histories of displacement and remember the pivotal role our own actions can assume in the lives of refugees at this time.

In GHOSTS, three Arab-Canadian men are detained and tortured in Syria and Egypt. Upon their release they return to Canada and discover that the Canadian government was complicit in their torture. We follow the lives and cases of the men for a year and a half as they fight to leave the horror of torture behind them, and learn how it is that Canadians could have been complicit in such a troubling injustice. This is a powerful examination of the fragile balance between democracy, human rights and national security fears and sadly continues to be relevant today. Watch the film today:

ON THE SIDE OF THE ROAD follows former West Bank settler Lia Tarachansky as she confronts  Israelis’ collective amnesia of devastating the Palestinian people in 1948 when the state of Israel was born. She traces the transformation of Israeli veterans trying to uncover their denial of the war that changed the region forever, and turns the camera on herself in a return to her settlement where erasure gave birth to a generation, blind to its own origins. Attempting to shed light on the country’s biggest taboo, she is met with outrage and violence. Watch this doc today:

SPECIAL FLIGHT documents a 1994 Swiss law that mandates the detention of all foreigners, placing them in a liminal and unjust situation until they are to be expelled from the country. Each year, a cold administrative decision has left thousands of men and women imprisoned, without conviction, up to 24 months before their ejection from the country. Their only “crime” is to be undocumented. Those who refuse to leave voluntarily are bound hand and foot, hooded, put in disposable diapers and forced into a plane on extradition flights, where some tragically do not survive the journey. Centres like those in Switzerland are actually legislated all over the world (including in Canada), making this film relevant on a global scale. Watch this powerful expository doc today:

Experiencing these films reminds us all of the vulnerability, and the resilience, of some of the most marginalized and subjugated peoples in our world - migrants and refugees.

The need to speak – and stream – truth to power becomes all the more urgent when we consider the grave injustices occurring outside of public scrutiny and right in front of our eyes. Cinema Politica’s network and Video on Demand programming remains committed to calling out institutions that abuse their authority, by presenting independent and alternate visions of governance, and inciting people to take action in solidarity and optimism with those detained, deported or imprisoned. No one is illegal.

(Maggie MacDonald) 


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