Don't look away anymore!
Since its creation in 2006, the Montreal Human Rights Film Festival (MHRFF) has become one of the major cultural manifestations addressing the topic of human rights violations here and elsewhere in the world. Independent and totally free of particular influences, the MHRFF dares and sheds light to all the consequences of human stupidity. But beyond war crimes and numerous walls of shame, the MHRFF also shows gestures of friendship and solidarity, gestures defying all the critiques of the impossible.
This year we are celebrating the MHRFF’s fifth anniversary. We are pleased to see that, despite our extremely limited means, the festival was once more able to face all challenges. After viewing the 1,300 films proposed to us for this 5th edition, we sadly have to admit that all over the planet, human rights are more and more baffled. In an era when war against terrorism serves as a justification to many security abuses, those films show us entire lives forced to silence and despair, human beings forgetting the mere signification of words like justice, freedom, equality and fraternity.
This 5th edition of the MHRFF is most of all a tribute to all those who dare criticize, through their art, all kinds of intolerance and atrocities committed throughout the world. In deed, if the MHRFF exists and is able to offer this space for dialogue, it is most of all thanks to the numerous filmmakers, directors, producers and dedicated actors, sometimes anonymous, other times famous. In their way, these actors of the Seventh Art are the incarnation of the ideals stated in all Human Rights declarations or charters. They are the ones we want to thank above all for allowing the MHRFF to present a cinema that fights against ignorance, prejudices, indifference and most of all forgetfulness.
This edition is also a tribute to the people of Haiti, who beyond their poverty have given the whole world the opportunity to prove that solidarity is a great treasure which is not measured in dollars or in terms of GDP.
We want to thank all our partners, most especially the Montreal public who has been following us for the last five years.
Happy Festival to all!
Alix Laurent, Président