Moving Worlds is a programme of films available to watch at home during Refugee Week, a UK-wide festival celebrating the contributions, creativity and resilience of refugees (14-20 June 2021). Moving Worlds is produced by Counterpoints Arts, which coordinates Refugee Week nationally.
In light of physical distancing restrictions, this year's programme worked digitally in order to facilitate home screenings and online post-screening conversations. Now more than ever, we realise the need to stay socially and personally connected and to share compelling storytelling journeys.
Responding to this year’s Refugee Week theme ‘We Cannot Walk Alone’, the programme was a curated programme of features and shorts exploring personal experiences of forced displacement, stories of unexpected alliances, unlikely friendships and stories that celebrate difference, while inviting us to focus on how we can walk alongside one another. In contrast to past years, we have selected films that although may not explicitly engage with forced displacement, they offer important lessons about the need for solidarity across difference.
Invested in the power of film to transport us across borders, this year's programme hosted a collection of films from around the world that embrace symbolism, metaphor and personal testimony, and offer a range of filmic stories, experiences, and voices. In addition to the selected films generously offered by our network of filmmakers at special screening rates, we also identified award-nominated films that can be accessed online via external websites.
We invited you to screen any of these films in the comfort and safety of your home. We hoped that they can generate meaningful conversations in person or virtually - find out more in the locations section. We have also designed downloadable post-screening guides to encourage lively conversations across all ages.
Our thanks to the creative and passionate filmmakers and producers who generously agreed to make their films available for the Refugee Week 2021, Moving Worlds package. This year's programme is dedicated to all individuals currently experiencing forced displacement who may be facing precarious and challenging living conditions, especially during this uncertain time.
Moving Worlds first ran in Dublin, Ireland (2008) as a collaboration between the Forum on Migration and Communications (FOMACS) and with support from the European Union National Institutes of Culture (EUNIC): Alliance Française, British Council, Goethe-Institut Ireland, Instituto Cervantes Dublin and the Austrian Embassy Dublin, in association with the Irish Film Institute.
Moving Worlds UK is curated and programmed by Nelli Stavropoulou for Counterpoints Arts.
Credit: Still from 'Mary Meets Mohammad'
A collection of five short films that looks to lived experiences of displacement: focusing on the stories of the sounds, languages, histories, and memories which shape our relationship to space and identity.
Tasmania's first detention centre for asylum seekers opens in Australia and Mary, a staunchly Christian pensioner, is opposed. Mohammad, a 26 year old Muslim man from Afghanistan, discovers an unlikely friendship with Mary after her knitting club donates beanies to the asylum seekers.
Most Free follows Artistic Director Ellen Hathaway on an investigation into dance and community.
Realising that they share common foes in Margaret Thatcher, the police and the conservative press, London-based gay and lesbian activists lend their support to striking miners in 1984 Wales.
When Marwa is nine years old, she flees with her family from Syria and gets stranded in Jordan. They believe they will be in a refugee camp for a few months, but that quickly turns into years
Five years ago, the Kenyan farmer Kisilu Musya started to document his family, his village and the impact that climate change is having on both. They face and film floods, droughts, storms and when Kisilu's house is destroyed by a storm, he starts a communal farmers' movement and calls for action against the extreme consequences of the weather. Kisilu makes it far in his struggle – all the way to both Oslo and the high circles of COP21 in Paris.
Credit: Still from 'Ambience' by by Wisam Al Jafari, part of Journeys Into Film Collection
A group of unrelated individuals share the same journey towards their dreams.
A father discovers that his son is different from other kids in the most unusual way. To keep them both safe from judgement, Dad covers him and keeps him out of sight.
Ibu Wasidah wanted more than just being a mum, so she joined the Women Farmers group in her village and together they create a sustainable way of life. They get help from Anang, a photographer from Jakarta who uses his work to promote the products produced by the women and connect city and village through food and art.
A roadside motel in Newark, New Jersey harbours refugees during their first night in America. Hotel U.S.A. captures a group of newcomers during their first moments in the country, exploring the sense of loss and hope that pervades the refugee experience.
The film features the work of Refugee and Asylum Seeker girls and women from all over the world together with International Artist and Human Rights Activist, Salma Zulfiqar. The film is a creative expression of their lives during COVID-19, representing over 20 nations and five continents and calls for solidarity with Refugees and Asylum Seekers globally.
During a bombing raid in Syria, Adam and his family try to watch a football final match.
If we were able to trace our ancestors beyond the neat branches of our immediate family trees, we would find something more like a mesh of interwoven roots spreading all across the world.This film tells the story of us all, whether we come from a family that's stayed in the same area for generations, or have travelled half way around the world in search of somewhere safe to live.
A solitary man tries to follow the sound of a solo oud.
Set in a world of magical realism, Wind sees a grandmother and her grandson trapped in a never-ending sink-hole, scavenging debris that floats around them to realise their dream of escaping to a better life.
The story of a woman caught living in two parallel worlds. She belongs to her past as much as she does to her present. Her memories in Syria continue to shadow her as she pursues a new life in the U.K.
In this award-winning film, director Tim Travers Hawkins gained access to the highly guarded Heathrow Immigration Removal Centres and provides insights into the psychological trauma caused by the UK Government's policy of 'Indefinite Detention'.
Credit: Still from 'Wind'
Do you have questions about our programme? Would you like to share with us your screening experience? Send us a message, and we will get back to you soon!
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