Polemics is a section that shows outstanding films on the biggest feminist issue of the year. Unlike previous years where we focused on one specific issue, this year, we have come up with three different themes. Nowadays, information can travel across virtual and physical worlds faster than ever, which prompted a more dynamic communication across the world, eventually resulting in the emergence of a feminist movement led by the new generation. In response to this, we would like to address some of the suppressed issues that have been arising.
This year’s themes are as follows: abortion, #MeToo, and online sexual harassment. As the abortion rights movement has been gaining momentum in South Korea, the protesters’ “demands” have become “needs” of our time that can no longer be ignored. The heated controversy over women's reproductive rights interconnected with social, political, and economic justice will be discussed in depth in the following films: Birthright: A War Story and Some Things Are Hard to Talk About. While the former focuses on many urgent issues approachable from a feminist perspective in the United States where abortion is legal in many states, the latter explores the members of a family over three generations who have all experienced abortions but cannot talk about them openly in Germany. Regarding the #MeToo campaign: this section features three Korean short films and two non-Korean films. The three by Korean female directors boldly responding to the current issues in South Korea, and the non-Korean films are The Rape of Recy Taylor, a movie about an African-American woman who was forced to remain silent after reporting her rape in the 1940s United States but never stopped fighting for justice as the unknown human right activist and Anita, story of a historical figure who dared to accuse her supervisor of sexual harassment as an attorney. For the last theme, it is possible to learn about online sexual harassment by looking at Rust, a film that explores how a leaked sex video can drastically affect a girl’s life as well as what the misogynic teen culture looks like in the age of social media. In addition, there will be a special talk as a part of Polemics, a meaningful opportunity not only to address and discuss these three themes in depth but also to find a platform for a shared discourse-connecting cinema with reality.
CHO Hye Young / Programmer