Coming to theatres today, Friday, May 19:
HELL ON EARTH: THE FALL OF SYRIA AND THE RISE OF ISIS
Sebastian Junger and Nick Quested
Hot Docs, Greenwich, Provincetown
A comprehensive exploration of the conflict in Syria and the origins of the Islamic State.
Taking an overarching view, Junger and Quested seek to illuminate a large and complex topic that encompasses the motivations of dictator Bashar al-Assad, the revolutionary potential of the Arab Spring, the consolidation of power by radical Islamic militants, the resultant refugee crisis, and the inaction of Western powers to the conflict. At the same time, the filmmakers weave in more personal stories as a supplement to the larger recent political history lesson, following the efforts of a family of Syrians seeking an escape from the war, and Kurdish forces defending their home, among other threads. While perhaps taking on a bit too much at times, the overall effect is still soberly compelling.