A Kali Temple Inside Out


Nepal, 2018, 83 min / Original languages: Hindi
Location: India
A Film by: Dipesh Kharel, Frode Storaas

Religious boundaries are not as sharp and antagonistic as the news lead us to believe. This film shows the everyday life inside and around a Kali temple in the city of Kanpur, Uttar Pradesh, India. The temple building houses a Kali shrine and a smaller Hanuman shrine. Visitors present offerings to both. A closer portrait of a priest and three devotees reveals the importance of the temple. Yet, the protagonists occasionally also visit holy places of other religious traditions, whether to learn more or seek additional divine support. The film is thus a silent critique on the obsession with religious conflict in contemporary debates. “God is one, the religions are made by humans”, concludes the priest in the film.

See biography Dipesh Kharel and Frode Storaas

In Search of Ram


India, 2019, 105 min / Original languages: Hindi
Location: India
A Film by: Prabhash Chandra

The notion of Ram, the “supreme” Hindu god, and the Indian caste system are examined through three intersecting, non-linear narratives: a potter and his donkey, three close friends and the “lower caste” Ramnamis – a Dalit community based in Chhattisgarh. The film documents a subversive movement initiated by the Ramnamis against discrimination and caste-based hierarchies in Hindu religion. The portait of the potter questions the practice of idolatry and a singular mainstream notion of Ramayana iconizing Ram. The story of Indu, a social activist working with the homeless, Sahir a Muslim journalist and Savi, a Dalit painter and research scholar, shows how caste and religion affect personal lives and friendship.

See biography Prabhash Chandra

Discussion Saturday morning

Participants: Dipesh Kharel, Frode Storaas, Kathinka Frøystad, Prabhash Chandra 
Moderation: Julia Koch, Reobert Scheck

Even When I Fall


Great Britain, , 90 min / Original languages: Nepali
Location: Nepal
A Film by: Sky Neal, Kate MacLarnon

Sheetal and Saraswoti met as teenagers in a Kathmandu refuge, both survivors of child trafficking to Indian circuses. They had been rescued and brought back across the border to Nepal, but what does the future hold for these young women returning to a home they barely remember? “Even When I Fall” traces their journey over 6 years, as they reclaim their skills as circus artists and begin to build a future against all odds. Along with 11 other young trafficking survivors, they create a new livelihood for themselves ¬– Circus Kathmandu, Nepal’s first and only circus. This intimate film harnesses the visual power of circus to give a unique perspective into the complex world of human trafficking.

See biography Sky Neal and Kate MacLarnon

The World Has Not Changed


Norway, 2018, 36 min / Original languages: French, Pere, Fulani
Location: Cameroon, Ngaoundere and Gadjewan
A Film by: Trond Waage

The Pèrè people are an ethnic group living in the Père plains. Their territory is divided by the Nigerian Cameroonian border and their traditions are threatened by a strong islamization process and migration into the cities. The regional radio station CRTV Adamaoua in North Cameroon broadcasts in various national languages. “The World Has Not Changed” follows the editors in the language of Pere and their work to take care of the traditions of their people and to facilitate communication between their people and the modern world.

See biography Trond Waage

Nollywood. Filmbusiness African Style


Germany, 2019, 65 min / Original languages: German, English
Location: Nigeria
A Film by: Johannes Preuss

"The second largest film industry in the world" is based in Lagos, Nigeria. Nollywood is known for its low-cost films, which are sold on local street markets. However, a lot has happened in recent years. Multiplex cinemas are opening up and the Internet is providing affordable access to worldwide distribution. These new opportunities attract diverse characters. For director Abba Makama, the moment has come for an intellectual cinematic movement. Bastian Gotter, a young investor from Berlin, almost accidently succeeded in founding the largest streaming service in Africa. Popcorn cinema producer Don Omope says: "We are here to become the Nigerian Tarantinos and Steven Spielbergs."

See biography Johannes Preuss

Discussion Saturday afternoon

Participants: Felicia Hughes-Freeland, Trond Waage, Johannes Preuss  
Moderation: Matjaz Pinter, Marlene Schlichtenhorst

Congo Calling


Germany, 2019, 90 min / Original languages: German, English, French, Swahili
Location: GDemocratic Republic of the Congo; Belgium; Germany
A Film by: Stephan Hilpert

In eastern Congo, one of the poorest regions on earth, three European aid workers are forced to question how helpful is the help of the West. Raúl, a French-Spanish economist doing research on rebel groups, realizes he is leading his Congolese colleagues into great temptation with his project funds. After 30 years in Africa, Peter, from Germany, reaches retirement age and is unable to renew his job contract. He is fighting a losing battle to preserve his identity as an aid worker. The relationship of Anne-Laure, from Belgium, is put to the test when her Congolese boyfriend becomes a high-profile regime critic. Three personal insights into coexistence and cooperation between Europe and Africa.

See biography Stephan Hilpert

Spears From All Sides


USA, 2019, 90 min / Original languages: English, Spanish
Location: Ecuador; USA
A Film by: Christopher Walker

It is the story of a small Amazon village desperately fighting to defend its future – and ours. 70% of the Ecuadorian Amazon, home to 12 ethnic groups, has been divided into oil blocks, polluting one of the world’s most bio diverse rainforests. Only a small group, the Waorani, have successfully fought to keep oil off most of their land. 25 years ago, the filmmaker came to the Amazon to tell their story in the documentary “Trinkets & Beads”. Now, Ecuador has begun auctioning off the last pristine Waorani rainforest to the international oil industry – including the highly diverse Yasuni National Park. He returned to Ecuador in late 2014 to see if the Waorani could still win their battle against the big oil.

See biography Christopher Walker

Discussion Saturday evening

Participants: Stephan Hilpert, Christopher Walker
Moderation: Michael Schönhuth