Coming to theatres today, Friday, October 13:
Telluride, Hamptons, Mill Valley, Haifa, Atlantic
An overarching view of the global refugee crisis.
Chinese dissident artist Ai Weiwei, who has been documenting the refugee crisis via outlets like Instagram for some time, travels the world over a year, visiting more than 20 countries to try to capture the almost unfathomable scale of the greatest humanitarian crisis of the century. Not constraining his cameras to any one familiar locale, Ai instead bears witness to the seemingly endless movement of displaced persons throughout the world, from African rafts seeking landfall in Europe and Syrian tent cities in Jordan to Kurds in Turkey, Myanmar Rohingya seeking safety in Bangladesh, and visits to the US/Mexico border. While refugees are occasionally heard from, the film largely positions them as a silent mass entity, underscoring their statelessness and their multitude – a provocative approch that may not sit well with viewers seeking a closer human connection and the perspectives of individuals directly part of the crisis. Instead, headlines and statistics play on screen, and commentary comes from experts who also take a broader view. What’s undeniable, however, is that Ai has crafted disturbingly striking images that should leave an indelible impression on viewers.