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Films at Founders: Human Flow

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Abramson Family Founders Room, School of International Service

American University

4400 Massachusetts Ave NW

Washington, District of Columbia 20016

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Films at Founders returns!

Please join us for the third screening in our “Films at Founders” series: free screenings of award-winning documentaries spotlighting the issues important to global citizens. Screenings are held in our SIS Abramson Family Founders Room. Join us and enjoy popcorn, soda, and some of the most significant recent documentaries available. Next up is Human Flow, which tells the story of the global refugee crisis.



About the Film

These are the real human faces—each lined and luminous with stories of love and courage and the urgent battle for survival—of a planet on the move, a planet in the midst of a human emergency. Much has been said in the past few years by politicians and pundits about the millions of refugees fleeing war, hunger and persecution. Yet, as debates rage about who and how many, security versus responsibility, putting up walls or building bridges, the vital truth of real people with real dreams and real needs caught in a labyrinth of uncertainty can get lost. The very word refugeecan distance, can lull us into forgetting this major story of our times is not about statistics or abstract masses but about beating hearts, about lives-in-process, a stream of individual stories full of color, ecstasies and sorrows no different from our own.

Thats why artist Ai Weiwei foregrounds the humanity of refugees—their quest for the things we all want: safety, shelter, peace, the opportunity to be who you are—in his powerful new work of cinema: Human Flow. Ai has said the crisis before us is not only the staggering number of refugees with nowhere to go right now but the temptation to turn away in a time that asks something of each of us. So he set out on a journey of his own—a simple yet epic journey to share in the daily lives of people fleeing turmoil in every corner of the planet. The result is a cinematic experience grand in scale but deeply intimate in feel. It is a fluid intermixing of poetry with hard facts, laughter with adversity, the stark with the staggeringly beautiful. Moving across 23 countries, Ai creates an immersion that invites the most personal exploration, one that allows each viewer to consider what its like to live life at its most vulnerable—and to ponder what we owe to one another.

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Abramson Family Founders Room, School of International Service

American University

4400 Massachusetts Ave NW

Washington, District of Columbia 20016

View Map

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