Horizon Hot Docs
Horizon Hot Docs shares untold stories from the fringes, exploring individual and community identity and celebrating and giving a platform to courageous change makers and activists. Here's what's screening as part of the program:
After the Apology // Monday 26th August
Four Aboriginal grandmothers each fight their own battle to challenge government policies to bring their grandkids home. Their grassroots actions spearhead a national conversation to curb the skyrocketing rates of child removal.
Suellyn thought FACS would only remove children in extreme cases until her own grandchildren were taken. Hazel decided to take on the FACS system after her fourth grandchild was taken into state care. Jen Swan was raising her grandchildren until she was deemed unsuitable by FACS.
The rate of Indigenous child removal has increased at an exponential rate since Prime Minister Kevin Rudd delivered the apology to the ‘stolen generations’ in 2008. Hazel started GMAR as a response to the rising rates of child removal and along the way she has been joined by families across Australia in the battle to bring the kids home. Together are not only taking on the system, they are changing it.
#FEMALE PLEASURE // Tuesday 27th August
Barbara Miller’s feature documentary #FEMALE PLEASURE portrays five courageous, smart and self-determined women, breaking the silence imposed by their archaic-patriarch societies and religious communities. With incredible strength and positive energy, Deborah Feldman, Leyla Hussein, Rokudenashiko, Doris Wagner and Vithika Yadav are fighting for sexual liberation and autonomy for women, beyond religious rules and cultural barriers. But their victory comes at a high price: they all have experienced public defamation, threats and prosecutions, have been excommunicated by the society they grew up in and even received death threats by religious leaders and fanatics.
#FEMALE PLEASURE shows the universal mechanisms at work that determine the position of women until today, spanning cultures, religions and continents: from Japan and India and the Somali muslim diaspora to the Hasidic community in Brooklyn and the Catholic clergy in Europe. All protagonists have come to the same conclusion: the female body is subjected to male lust and first and foremost meant for procreation, without any regard for female sexual pleasure and autonomy. These women decided to speak up and are the ultimate example on how courage, strength and zest for life can indeed alter societal structures.
The film will be followed by Women to the Front, a free panel discussion in The Bison Bar. Three extraordinary women will be hosted by Emily Bundellu in conversation about overcoming adversity, empowering other women and rising through life’s tragedies, setbacks and hardships.
No Dress Code Required // Wednesday 28th August
No Dress Code Required is a Mexican film directed by the documentary filmmaker Cristina Herrera Bórquez. The story is about Victor and Fernando, beauty professionals in Baja California, Mexico. For many of their customers they were a lovely couple, until they decided to marry and become the first gay couple in the state to fight for their rights in a place filled with homophobia and inequality. Facing a wave of criticism and outrage from the city council, through their struggle, they managed to open the eyes of the members of Baja Californian society.
Inventing Tomorrow // Thursday 29th August
Meet passionate teenage innovators from around the globe who are creating cutting-edge solutions to confront the world’s environmental threats – while navigating the doubts and insecurities that mark adolescence.
Inventing Tomorrow follows six young scientists from Indonesia, Hawaii, India and Mexico as they tackle some of the most complex environmental issues facing humanity today – right in their own backyards. Each student is preparing original scientific research that he or she will defend at ISEF, the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. Framed against the backdrop of the severe environmental threats we now face, we immerse the audience in a global view of the planetary crisis, through the eyes of the generation that will be affected by it most.
Right to Harm // Friday 30th August
Through the riveting stories of five rural communities, Right to Harm exposes the devastating public health impact factory farming has on many disadvantaged citizens throughout the United States.
Filmed across the country, the documentary chronicles the failures of state agencies to regulate industrial animal agriculture. Known formally as Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations – or CAFOs – these facilities produce millions of gallons of untreated waste that destroys the quality of life for nearby neighbours. Fed up with the lack of regulation, these disenfranchised citizens band together to demand justice from their legislators.