Directed by Ai Weiwei (Germany/USA/China/Palestine, 2017, 140 min.). Digital.
Over 65 million people around the world have been forced from their homes to escape famine, climate change, and war in the greatest human displacement since World War II. Human Flow, an epic film journey led by the internationally renowned artist Ai Weiwei, gives a powerful visual expression to this massive human migration. The documentary elucidates both the staggering scale of the refugee crisis and its profoundly personal human impact.
Captured over the course of an eventful year in 23 countries, the film follows a chain of urgent human stories that stretches across the globe, documenting migration in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, France, Greece, Germany, Iraq, Israel, Italy, Kenya, Mexico, and Turkey. Human Flow bears witness to a desperate search for safety, shelter, and justice, from teeming refugee camps to perilous ocean crossings, from dislocation and disillusionment to courage and endurance, from the haunting lure of lives left behind to the unknown potential of the future.
This visceral work of cinema is a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and poses an urgent question: will our global society renounce fear, isolation, and self-interest and choose a path of openness, freedom, and respect for humanity?
In November, Ai Weiwei and the MFA’s Matsutaro Shoriki Chair of Art of Asia, Christina Yu Yu, met the launch of the book ‘Ai Weiwei: Beijing Photographs 1993–2003’, by MIT Press. Watch their conversation here.
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