By Lisa Flueckiger, Contributing Reporter

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – International human rights NGO Amnesty International has helped curate a selection of twenty-five human rights documentaries that will be shown from September 17th until October 10th as part of the Film Festival in Rio.

Human Rights Flicks at Rio Film Fest, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil News
Still from the movie “Guerra Suja” (Dirty Wars), which will be followed by a debate this Saturday, photo courtesy of Festival do Rio.

The documentaries focus on a wide range of topics in the human rights field, such as the war on terror, homophobia, global warming, food security, bullying and repression of social movements. Some of the films have already won awards at film festivals in Europe and the United States.

The films give an “opportunity to reflect on the centrality of the struggle for human rights in the world and the times in which we live,” according to the event’s press release.

Some of the films will be accompanied by a post-screening round-table debate as part of the Cine Encontro (Meet the Cinema). As part of these debates, Rio-based Guardian journalist for The Guardian, Glenn Greenwald, who published Edward Snowden’s controversial NSA leaks on a large-scale U.S. espionage program and Jeremy Scahill, investigative journalist, will talk about the film “Guerras Sujas” (Dirty Wars) on Saturday, September 28th.

The film, which won the Cinematography award at the renowned Sundance Film Festival this year, is based on Scahill’s experience investigating the U.S. Joint Special Operations Command in Afghanistan, Yemen and Somalia. Scahill also co-wrote the screenplay of the film, which was directed by Richard Rowley. The screening will take place at Estação Botafogo cinema at 4PM and the debate, “Secrets and Lies,” will begin after the movie.

On Saturday, a diverse line-up of films will take viewers to struggles in places as far as India and Africa. “A Colheta do Império” (Harvest of Empire) highlights immigration in the United States, while “Desconectado” (Katiyabazz) shows life without electricity in Kanpur, India and “Deus Ama Uganda” (God Loves Uganda) deals with the persecution of homosexuals by Christians in Uganda.

On Sunday, “Um lixão em Hebron” (Good Garbage) recounts life in a garbage dump in Hebron, West Bank. “Meu Afeganistão – A vida na zona proibida” (My Afghanistan – Living in the forbidden zone) will transport film lovers to Helmland, Afghanistan, where the movie was filmed with the help of thirty locals and a Danish journalist. “Filhos do vento” (Les Fils du Vent) is a French production about the music of the Roma and their persecution in Europe.

“Uma Família Gay” (A Gay Family) delves into the issue of gay marriage in Argentina, “Refugiados do aquecimento global” (Climate Refugees) shows displaced victims of global warming worldwide and “Fogo nas veias” (Fire in the Blood) focuses on HIV in Africa.

The film festival’s full program is available here.

Read more (in Portuguese).

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