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// Films // Defiant Lives

Defiant Lives

Sarah Barton / Australia / 2017 / 85 ' / English


Rob Murphy
Sarah Barton
Kingdom of Ludd
Erin McKimm
Erin McKimm
Sarah Barton

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Awards & Festivals

Official Selection, Sydney Film Festival
Official Selection, Athens International Film Festival

Upcoming Screenings

Stay tuned for upcoming screenings!

previously screened

In Production

A fiercely defiant history of disability activism in Australia, the US & the UK bursts alive with creative energy & political will in this exhilarating doc.


Featuring exclusive interviews with elders (some now deceased) who’ve led the movement over the past five decades, the film weaves together never-before-seen archival footage with the often-confronting personal stories of disabled men and women as they moved from being warehoused in institutions to fighting for independence and control over their lives. Once freed from their imprisonment, disabled men and women took on the big charities, criticising the use of celebrities to beg on their behalf. They chained themselves to public transport around the world and demanded access “to boldly go where everyone else has gone before”; and they lobbied for support to live ordinary lives in the community with family, lovers and friends.

DEFIANT LIVES is a triumphant film full of extraordinary characters who put their lives on the line to create a better and very different world where everyone regardless of impairment is valued and can participate.


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