The planet is suffering from high fever and its thermometer can be found in Greenland. In this vast land of ice which is now melting at a great speed (248 cubic kilometres of snow each year) all that we hear on the news and read about in the newspapers constitutes the everyday life of its few inhabitants.
The Inuit, better known to us as Eskimos, watch helpless as their life changes dramatically and their Arctic civilization receives what is probably the worst blow in its centuries long, frozen history. Traditionally hunters and fishermen, they watch as their pray disappears and their moving about becomes more and more dangerous due to the fragile ice and the unexpected weather changes.
The creators of this penetrating documentary spent weeks in isolated communities in Greenland, recording the life of the native Inuit. They also present new climate research results, more pessimistic than ever, while uncovering the new and regrettable “el dorado” of oil companies who are preparing to drill for black gold in the planet’s most vulnerable area.
At the Delta of the Niger River in Nigeria, where a vast proportion of the planet's oil is excavated, bomb attacks, abductions and murders form part of the daily routine. The documentary portrays the image of “development”, as giant multinational petroleum companies would define it. Petroleum leaks in the River destroy the flora and fauna, poison the food chain and consequently wipe out the 27 million indigenous people of the area – the Ijaws, the Ogoni and the Itsekiris.
The inhabitants dare to ask the self-evident, they demand an end to it. As a response they are being massively and brutally attacked by special forces of the army and the police, which are armed by the oil companies. On the river the camera meets militia of the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta—MEND—and, for the first time, presents to the world shattering images of their speed boat patrols and heavy weaponry.
The Delta of Niger is a lost paradise. As the documentary reveals, it is a place where despite the natural beauty, contemporary “globalized” hell prevails.
Computer parts contain toxic and carcinogenic materials. When our favourite pc stops working, it turns into a dangerous electronic waste which must be recycled following rigid specifications. However, instead of managing their own electronic waste, developed countries find it cheaper to export it to poorer nations. In doing so, they force billions of people to choose between poisoning and poverty, while the planet’s seas, rivers, soil and air are being irreparably contaminated. Up to 50,000,000 tons of our “digital civilization” end up illegally in China. In cemetery cities, computers are cut into pieces, rinsed in acid baths and incinerated by legions of impoverished workers and underage children, who tear these parts to pieces with their bare hands for a dollar a day.
August 2008, two small Greek fishing boats broke the naval siege, illegally laid by the state of Israel on Gaza, for the first time after 41 years.
“Gaza We Are Coming” records the historic and risky journey of 44 activists from all over the world, who, by breaking the embargo, proved that history is often made by those that the wise and prudent determinists call “unreal”.
Can you imagine a water market? A market where owners of water stock would buy and sell, while others would profit on its price without needing it? What would life be like if all of the planet’s water resources, superficial or subterranean, the waters of rivers, lakes and glaciers, belonged to the private sector?
“Life For Sale” examines the biggest water market in the world, set up in Chile. Where the country’s water resources do not belong to the state but to private individuals and one company can own an entire river and possess a quantity of water as big as Belgium. A place where water has turned from a public good of life to property and a “water right” can cost as much as a house. Even in the Atacama desert, which is considered the driest place on the planet, the mining companies – big owners of Chile’s longest river, the Rio Loa – draw immense quantities and use valuable water to wash metals, thus condemning thousands of natives and farmers’ villages to thirst and poverty.
“Love hurts three times – when they cut you, when you marry and when you give birth”
Old African saying
Excision is an ancient custom that survives to this day. An excruciating operation on the female body, which is mainly encountered in African countries. Across the world, 140.000 girls and women have already suffered genital mutilation (FGM). Six girls are being mutilated every passing moment. In Mali the percentage of sexually mutilated women reaches up to 85%!
Little girls that are being kept captive by tradition and superstition are being submitted to the cruel custom in a defenseless manner, experiencing awful consequences throughout their life. Both the government and activist organizations in Mali are struggling against the practice these past few years. Will they be able to beat a deeply rooted tradition?
The Arctic Ocean spreads across 14 million square kilometers and conceals 25% of the global oil and natural gas reserves. As the ices melt, bays, marine areas and islands that had been long forgotten suddenly find themselves in the spotlight of the international agenda.
Five arctic states, Russia, Canada, Norway, Denmark and the US, lay claim to a piece of the Arctic Pole and, of course, to the largest share of the treasure. This is a new-age western film on the Wild North, which explores the economic and geostrategic facts of the Great Arctic Game that has just begun.
Have you ever asked yourself where does the fish you eat come from? If you had, you would be controlling a huge pirate industry which commits a crime in your dish! The ever-rising demand for fish in the international market has driven European and Asian fishing fleets towards the coasts of West Africa. Hundreds of industrial pirate ships are fishing illegally in the territorial waters of the nations of the area, devastating all forms of life in the ocean and condemning millions of Africans to poverty and hunger. “Stealing from the Poor” was filmed in Senegal, where pirate fishing perpetrated by huge industrial vessels belonging to developed countries is depriving the inhabitants of this West African country of their main source of subsistence.
In the virgin tropical forests of the Amazon, the region with the richest biodiversity in the world, an unspeakable crime has been and is still being committed against humankind. Texaco is accused of dumping 18.5 billion gallons of toxic oil waste into the Ecuadorian Amazonia. Petroecuador, the state oil company, is accused of causing hundreds of oils spills into the jungle.
Ancient native populations are considered invisible and expendable, victims of the oil companies' easy profiteering. They are disappearing on a massive scale, as pollution kills the animals they hunt and causes illnesses until recently unknown to them, such as cancer.
This documentary – the second by Yorgos Avgeropoulos on the same subject, following multi-awarded “Delta – Oil's Dirty Business” – is dedicated to the Tetetes and Sansahuari people. Their voices were silenced forever at the dawn of the 21st century on account of the region's “development”.
It was an unprecedented occurrence in world history. Nowhere and never in well-governed democratic states, had the public broadcaster been silenced in such a manner that was characterized as “autocratic” and “undemocratic”.
Within five hours, on the evening of June 11, 2013, the Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras turned off the switches of ERT, Greece’s public broadcaster, after 75 years of continuous operation. Both TV and radio frequencies fell silent, making screens broadcast black and the FM to buzz.
The closure of ERT was an unheard-of political act that shocked Greek citizens bringing back memories from the dark period of the dictatorship. It also caused a fierce international outrage from all around the world.
Why did the public broadcaster have to die?