SPLINTERS is the first feature length documentary film about the evolution of indigenous surfing in the developing nation of Papua New Guinea. In the 1980s an intrepid Australian pilot left behind a surfboard in the seaside village of Vanimo. Twenty years on, surfing is not only a pillar of village life but a means to prestige. With no access to economic or educational advancement, let alone running water and power, village life is hermetic. A spot on the Papua New Guinea national surfing team is the way to see the wider world; the only way. Filmed in cinema verité style, the film profiles several villagers in their quest to become professional surfers. Set at the crossroads of civilization in a land where cannibalism proceeded into the 20th century, the story is as much a tale of budding sportsmen chasing their dreams as it is the Old World fusing with the Modern World.
Recommended For You
2013 | 93mins
Health and Food
director Joseph Levy
starring Grant Achatz, Thomas Keller
2014 | 78mins
ALIVE INSIDE is a joyous cinematic exploration of music's capability to reawaken our souls and uncover the deepest parts of our humanity. Filmmaker Michael Rossato-Bennett chronicles the astonishing experiences of individuals around the country whose minds have been revitalized and awakened by the simple act of listening to the music of their youth.
actors Dan Cohen, Bobby McFerrin
director Michael Rossato-Bennett
Lost for Life
2014 | 75mins
In the United States, more than 2500 individuals are serving life-without-parole sentences for crimes they committed when they were seventeen years old or younger. Children as young as thirteen are among the thousands serving these sentences. Directed by Joshua Rofé (who spent four intensive years on the project), LOST FOR LIFE tells the stories of these individuals, their families and the families of juvenile murder victims. This searingly powerful documentary tackles this contentious issue from multiple perspectives and explores the complexity of the lives of those affected. What is justice when a kid kills? Can a horrific act place a life beyond redemption? Could you forgive?
director Joshua Rofe
Lost for Life
2011 | 101mins
At the time of the 1994 Rwandan genocide, the Mufti of Rwanda, the most respected Muslim leader in the country, issued a fatwa forbidding Muslims from participating in the killing of the Tutsi. As the country became a slaughterhouse, mosques became places of refuge where Muslims and Christians, Hutus and Tutsis came together to protect each other. KINYARWANDA is based on true accounts from survivors who took refuge at the Grand Mosque of Kigali and the madrassa of Nyanza. It recounts how the Imams opened the doors of the mosques to give refuge to the Tutsi and those Hutu who refused to participate in the killing. The film interweaves six different tales that together form one grand narrative that provides the most complex and real depiction yet presented of human resilience and life during the genocide. With an amalgamation of characters, we pay homage to many, using the voices of a few. Winner of the World Cinema Audience Award (dramatic category) at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival and the World Cinema Audience Award at AFI Fest.
director Alrick Brown
starring Hadidja Zaninka, Cleophas Kabasite, Jean Mutsari
Nanking - Narrated
2007 | 90mins
A powerful, emotional and relevant reminder of the heartbreaking toll war takes on the innocent, this award-winning documentary tells the story of the Japanese invasion of Nanking, China, in the early days of World War II. As part of a campaign to conquer all of China, the Japanese subjected Nanking?which was then China's capital?to months of aerial bombardment, and when the city fell, the Japanese army unleashed murder and rape on a horrifying scale. In the midst of the rampage, a small group of Westerners banded together to establish a Safety Zone where over 200,000 Chinese found refuge. Unarmed, these missionaries, university professors, doctors and businessmen?including a Nazi named John Rabe?bore witness to the events, while risking their own lives to protect civilians from slaughter. The story is told through deeply moving interviews with Chinese survivors, chilling archival footage and photos, testimonies of former Japanese soldiers?and a staged reading of the Westerners' letters and diaries by Woody Harrelson, Mariel Hemingway, Jurgen Prochnow and others. NANKING is a testament to the courage and conviction of individuals who were determined to act in the face of evil and a powerful tribute to the resilience of the Chinese people?a gripping account of light in the darkest of times. This version of the film features descriptive narration for the blind and visually impaired, created by the Narrative Television Network.
Nanking - Narrated
2009 | 77mins
Imagine discovering that you don't own the mineral rights under your land, and that an energy company plans to drill for natural gas two hundred feet from your front door. Imagine you have little or no recourse to protect your home or land from such development. Narrated by actress Ali McGraw (Love Story, The Getaway), SPLIT ESTATE is the Emmy-winning film that explores the shocking effects of oil and natural gas drilling on the environment and families in the Western United States. Outlining the dirty side of hydraulic fracturing and natural gas (an energy source the industry touts as a clean alternative to fossil fuels), this compelling documentary maps a tragedy in the making?as citizens in the path of a new drilling boom in the Rocky Mountain West struggle against the erosion of their civil liberties, their communities and their health.
director Debra Anderson
starring Ali MacGraw
The Kite (Le Cerf-Volant)
2003 | 76mins
A refreshingly original fairytale, Randa Chahal Sabbag's THE KITE follows sixteen-year-old Lamia - who must cross a border checkpoint between Lebanon and Israel to marry a cousin she has never met. Neither she, nor her betrothed, are eager to consummate a marriage to a virtual stranger. The situation is further complicated by Lamia's surprising admission that she is also in love with the Israeli soldier guarding the border. Sabbag's enchanting drama about marriage and tradition is underscored by delicate symbolism and artful references to politics of Lebanon's annexed territories. Lebanon's Official Submission to the 2003 Academy Awards for Best Foreign Language Film, THE KITE is a selection of the prestigious, award-winning Global Lens Collection, presented by the Global Film Initiative.
The Kite (Le Cerf-Volant)