For decades, Colombia has ranked first among countries in the number of social leaders assassinated. From 2002 to 2009, more than 470 leaders were killed by paramilitary militias in the pay of companies ready to do anything to crush the unions. Among these unscrupulous corporate brands were bottling plants of Coca-Cola company products.
These unpunished crimes spur U.S. activists Dan Kovalik, Terry Collingsworth and Ray Rogers into an ambitious crusade against the soft drink giant, accusing them of turning a blind eye to the misdeeds brought to their attention. By following the relentless efforts of this unshakeable trio, The Coca-Cola Case takes us on a fascinating legal road-movie, against a backdrop of denunciation campaigns claiming: Stop Killer Coke!
After five years of struggle, will Coca-Cola yield in the end? And on the verge of a settlement, what will the victims choose—cash, or power and integrity?
Feminism has shaped the society we live in. But just how far has it brought us, and how relevant is it today? This feature documentary zeroes in on key concerns such as violence against women, access to abortion, and universal childcare, asking how much progress we have truly made on these issues. Rich with archival material and startling contemporary stories, Status Quo? uncovers answers that are provocative and at times shocking.
In this feature documentary, a Chilean filmmaker returns to the motherland for the first time in 23 years. Time is passing. A generation of young Chileans has grown up with no knowledge of the facts surrounding the military coup of September 11, 1973. In his suitcase, The Battle of Chile his 3-part cinéma vérité chronicle of the political tensions in Chile in 1973 and of the violent counterrevolution against the democratically elected government of Salvador Allende. His documentary toured the world but was never seen in Chile. Discreetly, he shows it to his friends and a small group of students. After the screening, the young people are in a state of shock. They have an urgent need to know the truth, for it is they who must build the Chile of tomorrow. In Spanish with English subtitles
This full-length documentary takes us to an unspoiled corner of southern Belize, where cacao farmer and father Eladio Pop manually works his plantation in the tradition of his Mayan ancestors: as a steward of the land. The film captures a year in the life of the Pop family as they struggle to preserve their values in a world that is dramatically changing around them. A lament for cultures lost, The Chocolate Farmer challenges our deeply held assumptions of progress.
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 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.
This feature documentary exposes the little-known tragedy of girl soldiers in Uganda. How can they learn to live normal lives again after being abducted and trained to become killing machines? Clinging to their dreams, Grace, Milly and Lucy are trying to restore meaning to their lives and break the silence surrounding the fate of a sacrificed generation.
This feature documentary takes us through the twists and turns of judicial proceedings pitting Canadian mining companies Barrick Gold and Banro against author Alain Deneault, his co-writers and publisher Éditions Écosociété, following the 2008 release of the book Noir Canada, which raised troubling questions about the controversial practices of Canadian mining companies in Africa. Silence is Gold is a legal and political thriller that captures years of intense psychological tension.
This short documentary is an introductory portrait of labour relations in mid-20th century Canada. Produced in cooperation with the Trades and Labour Congress of Canada, the film traces the process of filing a worker’s grievance in the mechanical and industrial fields. In one instance, an auto-worker files a grievance for being demoted after refusing to work inside a truck cab that he considered too hot. Through several stages of negotiation between union and management, the rights of a worker with a genuine grievance are shown to be protected under the union.
The people of the Attawapiskat First Nation, a Cree community in northern Ontario, were thrust into the national spotlight in 2012 when the impoverished living conditions on their reserve became an issue of national debate. With The People of the Kattawapiskak River, Abenaki director Alanis Obomsawin quietly attends as community members tell their own story, shedding light on a history of dispossession and official indifference. “Obomsawin’s main objective is to make us see the people of Attawapiskat differently,” said Robert Everett-Green in The Globe & Mail. “The emphasis, ultimately, is not so much on looking as on listening—the first stage in changing the conversation, or in making one possible.” Winner of the 2013 Donald Brittain Award for Best Social/Political Documentary, the film is part of a cycle of films that Obomsawin has made on children’s welfare and rights.
Also available on the Alanis Obomsawin: A Legacy DVD box set
This short documentary offers an Indigenous perspective on the devastating experience of searching for a loved one who has disappeared. Volunteer activist Kyle Kematch and award-winning writer Katherena Vermette have both survived this heartbreak and share their histories with each other and the audience. While their stories are different, they both exemplify the beauty, grace, resilience, and activism born out of the need to do something.
Ages 11 to 17
History and Citizenship Education - Civil Rights and Freedoms
Media Education - Documentary Film
Social Studies - Economics
Coca-Cola is suspected of having used paramilitary elements in Colombia and Guatemala to have labor unionists assassinated. In 2001, U.S. lawyers took legal action. The suit was filed in an American court because an old law in that country allows foreign victims of crimes who have not obtained justice in their own countries to bring proceedings on U.S. soil. This documentary illustrates the power imbalances in this legal struggle, and the strategies used by the multinational. Questions to ask: What are those strategies? Can justice be done? Why did the workers reject the settlement proposed by Coca-Cola in 2008? What is dignity?