Current Films

A DECENT FACTORY

Thomas Balmès
England, Finland, France 2004 | 79 Min. | BetaSP, OmeU

In an increas­ing­ly glob­al­ized econ­o­my, more cor­po­ra­tions are ‘out­sourc­ing’ their pro­duc­tion to coun­tries with cheap­er labour costs and less legal pro­tec­tion of work­ers’ rights. Some cor­po­rate man­agers, whether out of sin­cere moral con­cern or because they must respond to the con­sid­er­a­tions of investors and share­hold­ers, are attempt­ing to bal­ance profit-making with social morality. 

A DECENT FACTORY focus­es on such an effort by Nokia, the Finnish elec­tron­ics firm, which sends a team led by two busi­ness ethics advi­sors to exam­ine con­di­tions at a Chi­nese fac­to­ry that sup­plies parts to Nokia. Film­mak­er Thomas Balmès, having con­duct­ed three years of research on the sub­ject, fol­lows them on their inves­tiga­tive jour­ney. The film doc­u­ments in fas­ci­nat­ing detail their inspec­tion of the plant, guided by its Euro­pean and Chi­nese man­agers. During their tour the Nokia team inves­ti­gates work­ing and safety con­di­tions, pay­roll records, and poten­tial envi­ron­men­tal haz­ards. They also con­duct prob­ing inter­views with the fac­to­ry man­agers as well as sev­er­al of the young Chi­nese female employ­ees who work and live in dor­mi­to­ries on the site. The advi­sors’ final report to Nokia man­agers, which expos­es numer­ous vio­la­tions of even the less strin­gent Chi­nese laws on min­i­mum wage and work­ing con­di­tions, con­fronts Nokia with the dilem­ma now facing an increas­ing number of West­ern firms - how is it pos­si­ble to bal­ance the profit motive with a sense of social responsibility?

ALIENATIONS

Malek Bensmail
Algeria, France 2003 | 105 Min. | BetaSP, OmeU
Q&A with:
Malek Bensmail
Alge­ria is a young state with a long his­to­ry. The 20th cen­tu­ry has been marked by colo­nial­ism, colo­nial war and unprece­dent­ed social and cul­tur­al upheavals that have called into ques­tion … read more

ALPHABET OF HOPE
(Azbuka Na Nadejdata)

Stephan Komandarev
Romania 2004 | 100 Min. | BetaSP, OmeU
Q&A with:
Stephan Komandarev
A stretch of seclud­ed, moun­tain­ous coun­try­side near the Bul­gar­i­an-Greek-Turk­ish border, a few kilo­me­tres long and a few hun­dred metres wide. In the 1980s, when the Bul­gar­i­an state tried to con­vert … read more

AMBASSADORS

Jouko Aaltonen
Finland 2003 | 57 Min. | BetaSP, OmeU
Q&A with:
Jouko Aaltonen
What does it mean to be a nomad? To move from one place to anoth­er to get your liveli­hood. To live in cir­cum­stances beyond your con­trol. To be a member … read more

ARLIT, DEUXIEME PARIS
(ARLIT, A SECOND PARIS)

Benin, France 2005 | 78 Min. | 35 mm, OmeU
Q&A with:
Idrissou Mora-Kpai
ARLIT is a slow film, quiet, with­out any hectic and with an affec­tion for small details. We are shown pic­tures of a dusty, dead town in Nige­ria, a for­eign world … read more

BRIDE KIDNAPPING IN KYRGYZSTAN

Petr Lom
Kyrgyzstan 2004 | 51 Min. | OmeU, Video
In Kyr­gyzs­tan, it is not unusu­al for a girl to go to school care­free in the morn­ing, but to end up a bride in a family of strangers by night­fall. … read more

JOURNEYS

Vinayan Kodoth
India 2003 | 39 Min. | 35 mm, OF
A hell­ish trip. Every day in Mumbai seven mil­lion com­muters use the sub­ur­ban rail net­work. Every year almost 4,000 people die in acci­dents. They fall off the trains, are dragged … read more

ESPRIT ET LE CŒUR
(Al Ruh Wal Qalb)

Molka Mahdaoui
Tunisia 2003 | 52 Min. | BetaSP, OmfU
Q&A with:
Molka Mahdaoui
Ahmed Jelman is the found­ing member of a pop­u­lar group that has attained cult status in Tunisia through the quick spread of their cas­settes and CDs. His voice, the catchy … read more

THE CURSE OF THE HEDGEHOG
(Blestemul Ariciului)

Dumitru Budrala
Romania 2004 | 100 Min. | BetaSP, OmeU
Q&A with:
Dumitru Budrala
THE CURSE OF THE HEDGEHOG fol­lows the life of an extend­ed Roma family for a whole year. They belong to the ”Baesi” group of Roma and live in extreme pover­ty. … read more

THE SWENKAS

Jeppe Rønde
Denmark 2004 | 72 Min. | OmeU
This doc­u­men­tary is a story about the Swenkas, a small group of work­ing Zulu men in post-apartheid South Africa. Men who every Sat­ur­day night leave their grimy over­alls behind and … read more

WHOSE IS THIS SONG?
(Cia E Tazi Pesen? )

Adela Peeva
Belgium, Bulgaria 2003 | 70 Min. | 35 mm, OmeU
“In a nice little restau­rant in Istan­bul, we were having dinner with friends from var­i­ous Balkan coun­tries - a Greek, a Mace­don­ian, a Turk, a Serb, and me, a Bul­gar­i­an. … read more