Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : September 11th 2015 Contents 12 Friday, September 11, 2015 • Issue 187
Famed actor Michael Fassbender and
late music star Amy Winehouse will
dominate the screen on September 16
and 17, respectively, as StudioFilmClub
(SFC) presents two nights of film screen-
ings and other activities during the 2015
trinidad+tobago film festival (ttff/15).
The two nights of screenings at SFC, lo-
cated at 7 Fernandes Industrial Centre,
Laventille, begin at 8.15pm, with doors
opening at 7.00pm. All events at SFC are
free of charge.
On Wednesday 16 September, there will
be a screening of the fiction feature Slow
West (2015, 84 minutes), directed by John
Maclean and starring Michael Fassbender.
A western, the film tells the story of Jay, a
17-year-old Scotsman, who travels to
America in the late 19th century in pursuit
of the woman he loves. Confronted with
the harsh realities of the frontier, he falls in
with a mysterious traveller, Silas (Fassben-
der), who soon discovers that the focus of
Jay's affection has a price on her head. To-
gether the two men navigate a vast wilder-
ness while attempting to stay one step
ahead of a bloodthirsty posse and a colour-
ful bounty hunter.
We are delighted that John Maclean will
be in attendance on the 16th to introduce
his film and answer questions afterward.
Then on Thursday 17 September the
documentary Amy (2015, 123 minutes), di-
rected by Asif Kapadia, will be screened.
The film is a portrait of Amy Winehouse,
whose raw honesty and supreme talent re-
sulted in some of the most adored songs
of the modern era. Her massive success,
however, led to relentless media attention
which, coupled with her troubled relation-
ships and precarious lifestyle, saw her life
tragically unravel. Featuring previously un-
seen archive footage, this moving, vital film
tells the story of Amy Winehouse as it was
meant to be told: in her own words.
Also on the 17th, there will be a tribute
to the late, groundbreaking artist Peter
Dean Rickards, who worked across photog-
raphy and video to create gritty, lyrical and
beautiful imagery from and of his native
Jamaica. The tribute will comprise a show-
ing of several of Rickards' videos, and a
number of projected images from his ac-
claimed The Afflicted Yard series. A party
will round out the evening.
Founded by the artists Peter Doig and
Che Lovelace, Studiofilmclub (SFC) began
screening independent and art-house films
in Building 7 of the Fernandes Compound,
Eastern Main Road, Laventille, in 2003.
In 2006, SFC began hosting screenings
and guests as part of the ttff. Guests of
SFC have included British-Caribbean artist
and filmmaker Isaac Julien (ttff/08), and
New Yorker theatre critic Hilton Als
(ttff/09). In 2012, the work of British-
Caribbean filmmaker Steve McQueen took
centre stage, while 2013 saw a screening
of the restored version of Shirley Clarke's
classic 1967 documentary, Portrait of
For more information about the ttff, visit
For the second year in a row, Amnesty International will
award a human rights film prize at the trinidad+tobago film
festival (ttff), which runs from 15--29 September.
Established in an effort to support the promotion of human
rights in Trinidad and Tobago and the Caribbean, the Amnesty In-
ternational Human Rights Film Prize will be awarded to the maker
of the feature-length Caribbean film screening at ttff/15 which
best highlights a human rights issue.
We are enthusiastically continuing our cooperation with the
trinidad+tobago film festival this year as we remain convinced that
films and filmmakers play an important role in promoting human
rights," said Chiara Sangiorgio, thematic adviser at Amnesty Inter-
"What may seem a remote and abstract UN instrument can
suddenly become a close reality when analysed through the cam-
era lens---something affecting a friend, a neighbour, our country.
Through this prize we wish to more formally acknowledge the ef-
forts of filmmakers and activists in the Caribbean to raise aware-
ness about human rights in the region."
This year four films---all documentaries---will be in competition
for the prize, one more than last year. They are:
Director: Aleksandra Maciuszek
Citizens of Nowhere
Directors: Regis Coussot and Nicolas Alexandre Tremblay
Countries: Dominican Republic, Haiti
The Last Colony
Director: Juan Agustín Márquez
Country: Puerto Rico
My Father's Land
Directors: Miquel Galofré and Tyler Johnston
Countries: The Bahamas, Haiti
"We are pleased to see more films selected for this year's Festi-
val grappling with human-rights issues," said Jonathan Ali, Edito-
rial Director of the ttff. "The range of issues considered is also
noteworthy. Both Citizens of Nowhere and My Father's Land deal
with the status of Haitians and people of Haitian descent in the
Caribbean, a timely subject. The Last Colony considers the sover-
eignty issue in Puerto Rico, also timely, given the economic crisis
there. And Casa Blanca is an intimate look at the status of the eld-
erly and the mentally disabled in Cuba."
The winning film will be chosen by a three-person jury. This
year's jury comprises Blanca Granados, Head of Industry at the
Cartagena International Film Festival in Colombia; Jason Nathu, an
attorney-at-law responsible for the Human Rights Law Clinic at
the Hugh Wooding Law School in T&T; and Chiara Sangiorgio,
Amnesty International's London-based coordinator of the cam-
paign for the abolition of the death penalty.
In addition to receiving a trophy, the winning filmmaker will also
be given a cash prize of TT$5000. The ttff and Amnesty Interna-
tional will also assist the winning film in getting screened as
widely as possible throughout the region.
Last year's winning film was The Abominable Crime, a docu-
mentary directed by Micah Fink, about Jamaica's LGBT commu-
nity. Since then, Amnesty International USA has supported the
screening of The Abominable Crime at the Pulitzer Center in New
York City. There was also a screening of the film in Mexico City to
celebrate the opening of Amnesty International's regional office
for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean, and both the film
and associated tools have been promoted through Amnesty Inter-
Amnesty International is a global movement of more than three
million members, supporters and activists in over 150 countries
and territories. The organisation exposes human rights violations
and campaigns for justice around the world. It is independent of
any government, political ideology, economic interest or religion,
and is funded mainly by its membership and public donations.
The ttff celebrates films from and about the Caribbean and its
diaspora, as well as world cinema, through an annual festival and
year-round screenings. In addition, the ttff seeks to facilitate the
growth of Caribbean cinema by offering a wide-ranging industry
programme and networking opportunities.
Clockwise from top left, stills from Casa Blanca, Citizens of Nowhere, The Last Colony and My Father's Land
Visit ttfilmfestival.com for more information.
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