• HRW festival showcases Afghan films

HRW festival showcases Afghan films

12 February 2013

Next month's Human Rights Film festival in London is showcasing three powerful films about Afghanistan. 

All three have won international plaudits.  The two documentaries being shown - My Afghanistan: Life in The Forbidden Zone, and Nowhere Home  - were both selected for the 2012 International Documentary Film Festival in Amsterdam.  Both are being shown for the first time in the UK.

The third film, French-Afghan author Atiq Rahimi's adaptation of his prize-winning novel, The Patience Stone, was selected as Afghanistan's entry for Best Foreign Film at this year's Oscars, but was not nominated for the award.

In "My Afghanistan",  Afghan-Danish journalist Nagieb Khaja travels to Lashkar Gah, capital of Helmand province.  He gives people living in outlying communities mobile phones equipped with cameras and asks them to film their daily lives, providing a rare glimpse into the war-torn existence of ordinary Afghans.

Nowhere Home, made by Margreth Olin, follows a number of boys from a Norwegian centre offering temporary residence to unaccompanied asylum-seeking children.  Among those it focuses on are two Afghan brothers, Hassan and Hussein.  While all the boys at the centre hope for an extension of their asylum status, the threat of deportation when they turn 18 hangs over their heads.

The Patience Stone focuses on the plight of women in Afghanistan.  It centres on a woman caring for her husband, an injured fighter who is in a coma.  When she begins a one-sided conversation with her comatose spouse, she feels, for the first time in her life, that he's listening to her.  Slowly but surely,  her reflections become confessions.

The Human Rights Watch Film Festival runs from March 13-22

For more details on the Festival, click here