Category “Human Rights”

Vice: North Korean Labor Camps

From the producer:  Shortly after I arrived in Siberia, our British editor, Andy Capper, texted me: “You’ll love Siberia. Everything is so close and the people are so nice.” He was of course being facetious (or British: same thing) because everything is 18 hours by train and the people are very mean indeed. Some might start out nice, but after the vodka starts flowing—which is always—so does the malevolence. There are exceptions to the cranky-Russian rule, but they’re very few and very far between. One such exception was a lovely, lovely man named Billy the Fish—not his real...

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Harlan County, USA

A man crouches and pokes at what first appears to be a wad of chewed-up pink bubble gum on the ground. “That’s what a scab will do to ya, by God,” he says, his voice quavering with emotion. The pink wad is brain tissue from a striker shot in the head by a strikebreaker. That’s one of the harsh realities of Harlan County USA. Barbara Kopple’s documentary camera looks at this forgotten corner of 1970s America, the site of some of the bitterest labor violence in American history. It’s hard to believe that some 40 years after the Depression, there were parts of Appalachia that were...

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Nightmare in Manchuria

Unit 731 was a covert biological and chemical warfare research and development unit of the Imperial Japanese Army that undertook lethal human experimentation during the Second Sino-Japanese War (1937–1945) and World War II. It was responsible for some of the most notorious war crimes carried out by Japanese personnel. Unit 731 was the code name of an Imperial Japanese Army unit officially known as the Kempeitai Political Department and Epidemic Prevention Research Laboratory. It was initially set up under the Kempeitai military police of the Empire of Japan to develop weapons of mass...

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Very Young Girls

Very Young Girls, whose title reflects the fact that in the United States the average age of entry into prostitution is just thirteen. The film takes us into the work of a former sexually exploited youth-turned-activist named Rachel Lloyd, who started the New York City organization GEMS (Girls Educational and Mentoring Services) to help victimized young women escape their pimps and find another way of...

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Undercover Care

This disturbing BBC Panorama special investigates the horrific abuse suffered by severely disabled and vulnerable patients at the Winterbourne View private hospital in Bristol, UK. This documentary is presented by Paul...

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Terry Pratchett: Choosing To Die

In a frank and personal documentary, author Sir Terry Pratchett considers how he might choose to end his life. Diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2008, Terry wants to know whether he might be able to end his life before his disease takes over. Travelling to the Dignitas Clinic in Switzerland, Terry witnesses first hand the procedures set out for assisted death, and confronts the point at which he would have to take the lethal...

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Shouting Fire: Stories From The Edge of Free Speech

This documentary film look at the changing interpretations of the first amendment of the U.S. Constitution – laws and court cases that have alternatively broadened and narrowed the amendment’s protection of free speech and assembly. The film’s thesis is that post 9/11 the government has seized unprecedented license to surveil, intimidate, arrest, and detain citizens and foreigners alike. The film also looks back to the Pentagon Papers’ case and compares it to cases since 9/11 dealing with high school students’ speech and protesters marching in New York City during the 2004...

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Hummingbird

In the beautiful coastal city of Recife, Brazil – a world capital for sex tourism – a couple of determined women decided they would try to break the cycle of domestic violence and get kids off the streets. Hummingbird goes onto the street to see the reality of these kids, and then goes into the programs to see just how these high risk kids can be helped. Although the recovery process is slow – it can be successful. The film follows the story of Adriana, a girl who left home at the age of six and had a daughter at age 11. She matter-of-factly tells how street life is and how the...

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Inside Out

The film "Inside Out" was born out of the angst that even in the 21st century, in a city as liberal and safe and cosmopolitan as Mumbai (India), women’s access to public space is limited and largely relegated to the sphere of purposefulness. Today, women are increasingly accessing the public sphere but with certain restrictions of unwritten rules. They are out there doing only a certain kind of work, dressed a certain way and almost always existing as consumers in markets or malls, caretakers for children in parks, or office-going purposeful women. But what happens when one just wants to...

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