Rhowan is WOW's marketing officer. As a Japanese language graduate (SOAS), unsurprisingly she is a massive fan of Kore-eda Hirokazu, Beat Takeshi and all things Ghibli.
Llongyfarchiadau - congratulations to Asghar Farhadi (director of A Separation, The Past) and all who worked on The Salesman, winner of Best Foreign Language Film at the 2017 Academy Awards. If you enjoyed our Iranian Film Day a couple of years back, then don't miss this film when it's screened at Aberystwyth Arts Centre and Chapter in March.
Among the nominees was the visually and culturally rich Tanna, a rare film from the South Pacific. The only place to see the film in Wales last year was at WOW Film Festival!
Farhadi boycotted the awards ceremony in protest against Trump's travel ban, but in an acceptance speech read out by Iranian-born US engineer and astronaut Anousheh Ansari he said, "Filmmakers can turn their cameras to capture shared human qualities and break stereotypes of various nationalities and religions. They create empathy between us and others. An empathy which we need today more than ever."
All around the world voices of resistance are being raised in protest against the powerful forces that shape our lives and we’re showcasing some of those voices here.
For sixteen years WOW has brought stories from all across the world for Welsh audiences to enjoy. These stories often stress our common humanity, the rewards of diversity, and promote mutual understanding and tolerance, values that we hold dear.
In a world that increasingly seems to threaten these values, we have decided this year to focus more closely on those speaking out and acting to create a better world for themselves, their communities and their countries.
Alongside the films there will be the chance to join in discussions, workshops, browse stalls and get involved in local and global campaigns.
Voices of Resistance Film Season:
See our Events page for details of workshops, talks and other activities related to the season.
CASA media present three inspiring short films made with young people in West Wales and Zanzibar and funded by Hub Cymru Africa and Welsh Government. Children from both countries participated in climate change and sustainability workshops as well as film making sessions.
Bold, brave and brilliant, this wise, sad and funny film captures Cuba at a critical moment in its history. Deserted by his wife, rejected by his lover, and sceptical of the promises of a new Cuba, Sergio feels alone in a brave new world, unable either to leave or to come to terms with the changes after the revolution.
A visual marvel, Hayao Miyazaki's (Spirited Away, Totoro) breathtaking sci-fi/fantasy epic about a nature loving warrior princess brought a new artistic credibility to anime and created the blueprint for Studio Ghibli’s powerful female heroines. A thousand years after the great war, a toxic jungle fiercely guarded by giant insects threatens to engulf the world.
During a brutal military crackdown a hugely dignified old man has to pass through an army checkpoint every time he wants to visit his land. The old violinist, Don Plutarco is a rebel sympathiser but agrees to teach the Captain the violin. So starts a tense and potentially deadly poker game.
This is an inspiring, timely movie about the best ways to solve our ecological crisis. Presented in five key chapters that lay out clearly and simply the work of pioneers who are reinventing agriculture, energy, the economy, democracy and education.
An illuminating, fascinating and finally very moving meditation on time and place and the enduring importance of memory, curiosity, courage and conscience. In the vast Atacama Desert, astronomers peer deep into the cosmos in search for answers concerning the origins of life. Nearby, a group of women sift through the sand searching for the bodies of loved ones, dumped unceremoniously by Pinochet's regime.
Playful, touching and smart, with the lightest of touches this tale of a young Chinese migrant finding her feet in Buenos Aires covers a lot of ground in its brief running time. Finding a job and learning Spanish are Xiaobin’s first priorities. Both bring with them the dilemmas of human relationships.
A compelling, authentic first-hand account of the plight of refugees told from their own perspective. Camped out overlooking Melilla, the tiny Spanish port on North Africa’s Mediterranean coast, Malian refugee Abou Bakar Sidibé is given a camera to document the daily life of his fellow refugees.
This charts Syria’s devastating civil war through an intimate portrait of a group of optimistic young friends hungry for change. They take to the streets with a smile and a song, but soon they feel the full force of the government’s brutal backlash of torture, death and destruction.
Mesmerising and haunting, this intertwines several stories to examine Thailand’s legacy of political repression, all the while giving a thrilling glimpse of cinema’s myriad possibilities. A bold, unusual film that intertwines the lives of a famous political activist, a young documentary filmmaker, a pop star, and a waitress, all of whom were touched by a student massacre.
Fuelled by a high-octane central performance this is a constantly absorbing thriller about a likeable, optimistic and street-wise young man’s rise from bus conductor to big-time drug dealer. Wulu shows a rather different picture of Mali than usual, intelligently connecting Ladji’s rise and fall to the political events that led up to Mali’s 2012 coup.
A smart, hard-hitting look at the global arms trade, the vast sums of money that are made and the corruption that creates. Fascinating interviews reveal the shocking realities of Britain’s central role in this dirty trade that counts its profits in billions and its losses in human lives.
Farhadi (A Separation, The Past) continues to astonish with this beautifully modulated portrait of a man, a marriage, and a society where nothing is quite as it seems. Emad is a kind and considerate English teacher who is also performing in Death of A Salesman.
Larraín (Jackie, No) fuses history, legend and fiction to powerful effect in this bold, stunningly inventive detective thriller and ‘anti-bio’. This is a fascinating examination of how we create the story of our own lives – particularly if you’re a vain, self-publicist like the great Nobel-prize winning poet, Pablo Neruda.
Resolutely low-key, this sweet romantic tale of a modest underdog preparing for his big fight conjures up a delightful mood of bittersweet melancholy. Although the expectations of the Finnish nation weigh on his shoulders, Olli Maki’s preparations for his shot at the world title seem surprisingly amateurish.
A charming, gentle tale about a group of village boys caught in the crossfire of civil war. In the lush breathtakingly green Colombian mountains, Manuel, Julian and Poca Luz enjoy a simple life where a football or set of coloured pencils is a treasured gift.
Entirely set in the back of a police truck, this ferociously well-made film paints a fascinating portrait of contemporary Egypt. Both supporters of the Morsi government and anti-Morsi protestors are out on the street demonstrating.
A rare chance to see a delightful Nepali film set in the awesome Himalayas during the Maoist insurgency. Despite belonging to different castes and social creeds, Prakesh and Kiran are best friends. The boys devise a plan to make some money by raising a hen and selling its eggs.