What does it mean to flee your country and leave behind everything you’ve ever known? This selection of films focusses on refugees and asylum seekers actively fleeing oppression and looking for safety in their new home country. Whether escaping religious persecution, homophobic violence, or genocide, each of these new Canadians has a story to tell.
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Films in This Playlist Include
Someone Like Me
Far From Bashar
No Fish Where to Go
From Sherbrooke to Brooks - Inside a Migration Corridor
TRIGGER WARNING: This film contains scenes depicting homophobia and violence, which may be disturbing to some viewers.
Someone Like Me follows the parallel journeys of Drake, a gay asylum seeker from Uganda, and a group of strangers from Vancouver’s queer community who are tasked with supporting his resettlement in Canada. Together, they embark on a year-long quest for personal freedom, revealing how in a world where one must constantly fight for the right to exist, survival itself becomes a victory.
Several years ago, after taking part in the mass uprisings against Bashar al-Assad, Adnan al-Mhamied had to flee Syria with his wife, Basmah, and their four children. Now settled in Montreal, the family opens their door to filmmaker Pascal Sanchez. They’ve adjusted to life in a peaceful city, but Adnan and Basmah still fear for loved ones back in Syria whose status and whereabouts remain unknown. The war that’s thousands of kilometres away continues to haunt them, surging suddenly to the fore in a conversation, Skype call or Facebook feed. Far from Bashar chronicles an endearing family as they go about their lives, tormented by a distant and seemingly interminable conflict.
Dawod is a 12 year old Yazidi boy. The Yazidi are a small Kurdish-speaking sect from northern Iraq that dates back to Mesopotamian times – who have been persecuted for almost as long. ISIS has been waging a campaign of genocide against them since 2014. Over 10,000 men have been killed. Thousands of women kidnapped, raped and trafficked. The survivors are in camps in Kurdistan and a lucky few have been brought to Germany and Canada. Dawod and his mother Naro were held captive by ISIS for months. They managed to escape by running through forests for 9 days and nights without food or water. They made it to one of the refugee camps and from there to Canada, arriving in London, Ontario in January 2018. This is the story of Dawod's arrival in and introduction to his new homeland and way of life.
This feature documentary tells the stories of 5 asylum seekers who flee their native countries to escape homophobic violence. They face hurdles integrating into Canada, fear deportation and anxiously await a decision that will change their lives forever.
In this short animation based on Marie-Francine Hébert's 2003 book of the same name, a friendship unites two little girls from opposing clans in a village where tensions are mounting. The citizens with the red shoes clearly despise those without, and one fateful morning, one of the girls and her family are accosted at gunpoint by their oppressors. The little girl barely has time to grab her beloved pet fish before the men are herded to one side and the women and children to the other. So begins our protagonist's long and painful journey as she seeks shelter for herself, her mother, and her fish. This modern tale compassionately and poetically addresses intolerance and the consequences of war.
Click here to discover more titles from Get Animated! 2020.
This documentary travels the migration corridor forged between Sherbrooke, Quebec, and the town of Brooks, Alberta, by French-speaking Africans. Most have come from the Democratic Republic of Congo, some by way of refugee camps in Uganda and Tanzania. Unable to find employment in Quebec, they travelled out West. An interweaving of personal stories and the filmmaker’s own trips back and forth through the corridor offer an honest look at how much work is yet to be done to successfully integrate these newcomers.