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Projects On Egypt's Revolution + Investigation Into Congo Charity Are TIFF 2013 Doc Selections

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by Tambay A. Obenson
July 30, 2013 12:08 PM
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Mission Congo - dir. David Turner, Lara Zizic

The Toronto International Film Festival unveiled its documentary lineup this morning, which will include 2 films of the Diaspora that I could immediately identify.

The TIFF Docs sidebar, formerly called Reel to Real, booked World Premieres of The Square (Al Midan) from director Jehane Noujaim and Mission Congo directed by David Turner, Lara Zizic.

The first film, The Square, a recipient of the Sundance Institute's Documentary Film Program and Fund (DFP) and a grant from Chicken and Egg Pictures, Jehane Noujaim's The Square, follows a short line of recent documentaries (that we know of and have covered) that center on the ongoing struggle of the Egyptian Revolution, through the fall of Morsi recently. It follows its young protagonists on their life-changing journeys through the euphoria of victory, into the uncertainties and dangers of the ‘transitional period’ under military rule.

Director Noujaim's previous work (which she co-directed with Mona Eldaief), a documentary titled Solar Mamas, was a BBC Storyville selection last year – one off 8 ground-breaking international documentaries that screened in November in 180 countries, that explored why, in the 21st century, 1 billion people still live in poverty.

The initiative announcement came the day after the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, which fell on October 17th.

Solar Mamas, now available on VOD, followed the remarkable story of Jordanian mother-of-four Rafea, who overcomes the objections of her patriarchal husband to train as a solar engineer at India’s Barefoot College.

The second film in TIFF's Doc Sidebar, is Mission Congo directed by David Turner, Lara Zizic. 

Synopsis reads:

Death, diamonds and greed. A charismatic US businessman pursues an irresistible opportunity during one of the worst humanitarian crises of modern times.

Prior to Mission Congo, the filmmakers spent several months in Eastern Congo, filming the efforts of two teenage boys who created a unique project, called the Children's Parliamentrun exclusively for children and by children - children who have made it their mission to defend the rights of other Congolese children and young adults. 

Issues such as sexual abuse within schools, accusations of witchcraft and incest are just some of the cases that the Children's Parliament confronts.

The filmmakers share part of their story in the Al Jazeera piece I dug up, below:

The Toronto International Film Festival, set to run from September 5-15, will make additional lineup announcements in the coming weeks.

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