FARGO, N.D. (December 15, 2021) – The North Dakota Human Rights Film Festival Jury is proud to announce the award winners for the fifth annual human rights film festival. Five films are being recognized and honored for their creativity, talent, approach to content and overall excellence of their films. “We’re excited to recognize these filmmakers and their work,” said Sean Coffman, Executive Director of the Human Family and Chair of the 2021 North Dakota Human Rights Film and Arts Festival.
The award winners include:
SAMUEL SPRYNCZYNATYK STORYTELLER AWARD FOR BEST FEATURE-LENGTH DOCUMENTARY
Directed by Aideen Kane, Lucy Kennedy, and Maeve O’Boyle
Country of Origin: Ireland
The 8th traces Ireland’s campaign to remove the 8th Amendment – a constitutional ban on abortion. It shows a country’s transformation from a conservative state in thrall to the Catholic church to a more liberal secular society.
The 8th includes voices from both sides of the debate, but its primary focus is on the dynamic female leaders of the pro-choice campaign. The film follows veteran campaigner Ailbhe Smyth and self-described glitter-activist Andrea Horan as they chart a bold strategy of grassroots activism and engineer the impossible. This dramatic story is underscored by a vivid exploration of the wrenching failures that led to this defining moment in Irish history.
An urgent narrative, a cautionary tale, and a roadmap for progressive reforms in a modern era where authoritarianism is on the rise, The 8th shows a country forging a new progressive path at a time when reproductive rights are threatened around the world.
BEST DOCUMENTARY SHORT
The Peace Pipeline
Directed by Gitz Crazyboy and Tito Ybarra
Country of Origin: United States
Comedians and activists Gitz Crazyboy and Tito Ybarra pose as an indigenous energy company sharing plans to reroute Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline through the wealthy white suburbs of Duluth, MN, to more fairly share the risks oil pipelines bring to indigenous lands—with shocking and hilarious results.
MIA EH’DESH COURAGE AWARD FOR BEST NARRATIVE SHORT
Directed/Written by Tathagata Ghosh
Country of Origin: India
A young firebrand woman decides to stand up against the patriarchy and hate politics that has begun to infiltrate her rural Bengali village and threatens to destroy her way of life.
TOM BRANDAU EXCELLENCE IN HUMANITARIAN CINEMA BEST OF SHOW
End of the Line: The Women of Standing Rock
Directed by Shannon Kring
Origin: United States
Indigenous women unite to stop the oil pipeline that threatens their land, water, and very existence.
AUDIENCE CHOICE AWARD
A Fire Within
Directed by Christopher Chambers
Origin: United States
A Fire Within chronicles the incredible true story of three Ethiopian women who immigrate to the U.S. after surviving torture in their home country, only to discover that the man responsible for their torture is living in America…and working at the same Atlanta hotel as one of the women.
It is an inspiring story about three immigrants, three refugees, three survivors taking a stand to make their voices heard, and their courageous attempt to bring their torturer to justice here in America.
The North Dakota Human Rights Film Festival Jury congratulates each of the filmmakers for their high achievement with their work.
The mission of the North Dakota Human Rights Film Festival is to educate, engage, and facilitate discussion around local and worldwide human-rights topics through the work of filmmakers and artists.