The Take is a political thriller that turns the globalization debate on its head. The film follows Argentina's radical new movement of occupied businesses: groups of workers who are claiming the country's bankrupt workplaces and running them without bosses.
With The Take, director Avi Lewis, one of Canada's most outspoken journalists, and writer Naomi Klein, author of the international bestseller No Logo, champion a radical economic manifesto for the 21st century. But what shines through in the film is the simple drama of workers lives and their struggles: the demand for dignity and the searing injustice of dignity denied.
This feature documentary focuses on the reality of life before, during, and after the signing of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and the profound effects the economic agreements between big business and government can have on human lives.
Filmed over a three year period in Canada, the United States, and Mexico, this documentary poses a sobering question: In this global war of cut-rate economies, are people on the losing side?
Set in the northern region of Afghanistan, this feature drama tells the story of a young bride-to-be who strays from local customs after befriending an Afghan-Canadian translator. Part lament against injustice, part testament to the spirit of a people who have survived decades of war, this film is a compelling drama in which East and West, love and honour, modernity and custom clash with tragic consequences.
This feature film made during an exceptionally feverish period of popular revolt that saw the coming together of Quebec’s 3 main unions (CSN, FTQ, CEQ) is a cinematic tract by socially engaged filmmaker Gilles Groulx. Propped against the backdrop of the 1970 October Crisis, the film is a frontal assault denouncing a “consumer society” viewed as the ultimate embodiment of evil.
In this feature documentary, 6 student activists visit 36 Canadian towns to take on one giant corporation. Filmed over 2 summers, these young crusaders (plus a gonzo journalist) try to raise public awareness about Wal-Mart's business practices and their effect on cities and towns across Canada. With youthful passion and often hilarious cultural jams, this film takes us to the frontlines of the ongoing debate over the company's increasing dominance in the Canadian retail market.
This short film from the Perspective series highlights social and economic development in Haiti circa 1957. It depicts customs and traditions used to pass along the history of a people, and offers a look into their daily lives — lives that looks very different from their experiences today.
This feature documentary based on Margaret Atwood’s bestselling book Payback: Debt and the Shadow Side of Wealth offers a fascinating look at debt as a mental construct and traces how it influences relationships, societies, governing structures and the fate of the planet itself. Exploring the link between debtor and creditor in a variety of contexts and places, from the mountains of northern Albania to the tomato fields of southern Florida, the film blends compelling stories of “owing” and “being owed” with the views of renowned figures like Karen Armstrong, Louise Arbour, William Rees and Raj Patel.
This feature documentary chronicles the lives of young call-centre workers in Bombay (Mumbai), India. The film profiles several characters who attempt to sell phone services to clients in the UK, showing both sides of globalization’s impact on India – the economic benefits as well as the break with tradition and loss of innocence. A compelling insider’s look at youth culture in India and the growing number of young people who choose to follow the American dream, Indian-style.
This documentary from 1980 depicts a factory community in China where over 6000 workers process, spin and weave raw cotton into 90 million yards of high-quality cloth per year. Also seen are the workers' residential, social, recreational and educational facilities, all located on factory property. The film presents an engrossing study of a lifestyle that is very different from that of the Western world.
This feature documentary offers a shocking look at the living and working conditions of Haitian agricultural laborers in the Dominican Republic. Each year, some 20 000 workers cross the border to cut sugar cane, lured by promises of good money. Instead, they toil up to 14 hours per day and live in unhealthy, cramped camps without running water, electricity, medical or educational facilities.
Every summer, the Royal Canadian Air Cadets offers its top cadets the chance to participate in an elite flight-training camp. As the Crow Flies follows a group of these young men and women as they undergo seven weeks of training to get their pilot’s license in an intense program that normally takes six to eight months.
When it comes to world-class marathon runners, Kenyans are considered the cream of the crop. Particularly those from Kenya’s Rift Valley. These athletes have won marathons in London, New York and Berlin, and have set countless world records. But some of Kenya’s top runners aren’t running for fame and fortune. Some are wanted warriors, running for their lives. For years, Julius Arile and Robert Matanda thrive among the roaming bands of warriors that terrorize the North Kenyan countryside. By the time they reach their mid-twenties, stealing cattle, raiding and running from the police is the only life they know. So when both warriors suddenly disappear from the bush, many of their peers assume they are dead or have been arrested. Instead, they trade in their rifles for sneakers—in the hopes of making it big as professional marathon runners. Years of fleeing from the police have prepared the men for running marathon distances, but do they have what it takes to overcome the corruption, mistrust and jealousy that threaten to derail their careers? Or will they give up on their dreams and return to a life of easy power and money? Told entirely by its central characters, Gun Runners is the American Dream, Kenyan-style.