Forms of justice
There are many ways and many angles in which to have a conversation about justice, as shown by the movies featured in this section. Constantly making its way back into the festival, justice is an important topic for us and one that has been on everyone’s lips in the last year, having been subjected by the politicians in power in Romania — and not just here — to enormous pressures, meant to either weaken it (as believed by the objectors to these measures), or to strengthen its various manifestations (as maintained — less credibly — by the politicians, many of whom are in the centre of corruption scandals, trials and even irrevocable sentences). Within this tense atmosphere, this dissonance of voices upholding different versions of the truth, one more convoluted than the other, the idea of justice being served has been less circulated, cast under the shadow of technicalities and procedures through which it is applied.
As a matter of fact, the films we have selected for your viewing in this year’s edition of One World Romania share an interest in certain details without which the act of justice would not be possible. But they also share another aspect which is important to us, namely that they approach this particular subject matter from unexpected and, at the same time, relevant angles, appropriate and able to re-open debates on the issue in our society.
When it comes to their legislation, all democracies are susceptible to certain inadequacies that can be exploited, when the time is right, in the interest of internal political strifes. For this reason a film like “The Trial”, which meticulously analyses every minute step in the complicated process of ousting former Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff, could serve as a lesson for the citizens of any state, cautioning them that the fine line between a liberal democracy and an autocratic and illiberal one can easily and swiftly be crossed, backed by rising populism and the petty economical interests of various political groups who at a certain point in time ascend to power. By the same token, a film like “A Stalinist Trial”, which recomposes a typical stalinist trial from the 1930s exclusively from archive footage, could serve as a warning signal in the new era of fake news that seems to be headed at an alarming rate towards a dystopia reminiscent of gruesome past practices. The rehabilitation of convicts, even those whom a large portion of society would probably readily rid itself of — such as the paedophilic protagonists from “Freedom” — should in fact constitute one of the main concerns for the specialists and members of a state, given that the primary purpose of convicting wrong-doers is to accompany them along their path back towards healthiness and the correct principles to function in a community. Last but not least, the spaces in which trials take place can be extremely important, as demonstrated in “Return to the Palace," being able to define and to articulate a certain dignified and respectable representation of the act of justice.
We would therefore like you to join us and reflect together on these diverse and complex themes derived from the main theme of justice, through the films featured in this section, all very special to us.
EVENTS IN CATEGORY
Forms of justice
Workshop with Guillaume Massart and Alexandra Mélot on the directing and editing process of their film