The Human Rights Watch International Film Festival will return to The Film Society of Lincoln Center’s Walter Reade Theater in June for its 20th anniversary with a program of films dedicated to raising awareness of human rights issues around the world. The festival, co-presented by Human Rights Watch and The Film Society, will run from June 11 to 25, featuring 21 feature-length films and 11 shorts from 17 countries, including 26 New York premieres.
“When the festival began 20 years ago, it was a rare oasis for people to see compelling and timely human rights films,” said John Biaggi, director of the Human Rights Watch International Film Festival. “Now that human rights are in the mainstream, these films are not only central to global discussions about rights, but also can effect powerful change.”
Pamela Yates’ “The Reckoning: The Battle for the International Criminal Court” is slated to kick off the festival. The film “chronicles the work of the ICC prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, and his team as they face down warlords, rebel leaders, and even heads of state in bringing perpetrators of crimes against humanity to justice.”
Other highlights of this year’s festival are a Benefit Screening of Costa-Gavras’ latest drama, “Eden Is West,” in which “the director draws on his early experience of exile to tell this bittersweet tale about an illegal migrant in Europe, whose dream is to reach Paris” and “My Neighbor, My Killer,” “an emotional portrait of a tiny Rwandan village as it goes through a remarkable experiment in community-based justice after the cataclysmic violence of the 1994 genocide,” for which director Anne Aghion will receive the festival’s Nestor Almendros Award for courage in filmmaking.
For the complete line up of films visit the festival’s official website.