March 18 – 29
At Tower City
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Events + Updates
Country: SYRIA, TURKEY
Run Time: 52 minutes
When elephants go to war, it is the grass that suffers. Syria is a nation of 20 million people being trampled underfoot as resistance fighters battle government troops for supremacy. In THE SUFFERING GRASSES, filmmaker-activist Iara Lee interviews dozens of Syrians whose lives have been upended by the conflict. More than 355,000 Syrian refugees have fled their country to live in border camps. Distressed by the lack of assistance from the outside world despite repeated descriptions of their plight to the media, many Syrians have concluded that they are on their own. Indeed, an appalling number of tourists interviewed in neighboring Turkey are completely unaware of the situation in Syria. And, still, there is hope for normalcy: mothers have set up schools in refugee camps where children make art depicting a peaceful future. "What did I do to Assad that he made me a refugee in another country?" one farmer asks. The answer is blowing in the wind. (In English and Arabic with subtitles) – B.B.
Sabah Haider, Iara Lee
Iara Lee, a Brazilian of Korean descent, is an activist, filmmaker, and founder of the Cultures of Resistance Network, an organization that promotes global solidarity and supports peace with justice projects. Lee is currently working on a variety of initiatives, grouped under the umbrella of CulturesOfResistance.org.
"Synthetic Pleasures" (1995) – 20th CIFF, "Modulations" (1998) – 22nd CIFF, "Cultures of Resistance" (2010) – 34th CIFF, THE SUFFERING GRASSES: WHEN THE ELEPHANTS FIGHT, IT IS THE GRASS THAT SUFFERS (2012)