Human Flow Reviews
Forgotten places and forgotten faces reach out and I struggle to remain seated. To comprehend the magnitude of what film director Ai Wei Wei intended. The camera remains. Lost souls stare onto it, onto the abyss. Dignified, proud, hopeful. Despite everything.
Statistics and news headlines appear. Foreign voices makeshift the background. Subtitles demand the attention of the viewer. Everyone must seat and watch. There is no easy way out for us as there is no easy way out for the millions of refugees stranded across the globe.
Oceans of humanity flow, stretching as far as the next border, people like waves reaching for the coast, seeking relief after a long journey. Aerial views of makeshift camps. Tents set along trains never to halt. People resting on the side of the road. On the verge of tears. Vulnerable to disease, under the elements, moving ever forward with their loved ones. All borders shutting down.
The system collapses, numbers increase and countries build fences and walls with money that could be used in so many other ways. No questions are asked or aid provided. Left behind, human beings facing the most inhuman conditions in the history of our race.
Those who are victims of the circumstances, run for fear of persecution. Those who pushed them into exile remain immune. Those who watch, what are we? What am I, but a privileged voyeur? A far removed entity able to switch off my screen at any given time. Sheltered, fed, safe. Free. Ashamed of myself as I type these words. Dreading the moment I move onto the next thing, and forget.
Pessoas odiadas em seus países, perseguidas, migrando para preservar as suas vidas e terem o mínimo de paz, querem trabalhar e retribuir o refúgio. E infelizmente serão também odiadas nesses países por pessoas ignorantes e insensíveis às perservidades que seus irmãos passaram.
Linda também a perspectiva da religião, difundida e interpretado por muitos como responsável por tantas disputas e tanto sofrimento... Mas é justamente a não observação do verdadeiro sentido da mensagem pregada por seus profetas, seja involuntária por alienação seja intencional por interesses políticos e ganância por poder, que tem causado tanta disparidade. A fé e a religião não podem ser condenadas pelo exemplo de pessoas que não as representam. O filme mostra brilhantemente que são justamente elas que mantém unidas essas pessoas que perderam tudo. Verdadeiros devotos que mantém a observação da oração, do culto e da caridade.
Enquanto isso, enquanto muitos brasileiros saúdam as atrocidades do presidente Trump, o nosso país se esforça pra também acolher refugiados dando a eles dignidade. Mas somos pobres. Ainda assim há corrupção entre nós e casos desastrosos como aquele edifício que desabou em São Paulo.
Esse filme é um alerta pra consciência. Precisamos pensar em nossos irmãos independente de etnia ou crédulo, buscar a caridade e vencer nossas vaidades.
To give a benefit of the doubt, I was physically starving the whole movie and regretting my decision to not claim my free popcorn as a member of the theater. But I'm sure that even if I watched the movie with my belly full, I would have still wished that the movie was better condensed.
The movie kind of felt like those old "Where's Wally" books with a myriad of people and him traveling from one page to another just hanging out somewhere in a corner taking lots of selfies.
His message in the movie is clear. "Look. Look at these people in motion, and the dignity we strip away from them as we deny their entering into our worlds" As much as the message is powerful and beautifully conveyed, (and as much as I feel like a terrible human saying this) at some point it was like "Cool. Anything else?" Monotonous repetition weakened overall took away magic from this film.
I might just be too practical, but I find documentaries that not only shed light on the problems but also the why, or potential solutions more satisfying. While he gave us an in-depth view of the victims' lives, he gave a very shallow insight into the "evil" he mentions a few times in the movie. There was no invitation from the director on "Hey, but here's what we can do to help." When I see something like this, I wonder if the directors' goal was just to depict the problem or evoke change? It just sounded like the former for this one. It's totally fine for an artist, but it just felt... irresponsible.
However, because of the overall monotony, some precious details stood out more. The moment when a paper crane is hung by a string from a wired wall to symbolize humans' vulnerable density tied, and flapping back and forth due to the wind, the force of nature we can't control. The moment where he shot the shadows of refuges walking across a bridge with a guard rail that in shadow looked like prison cells, and it looked like they kept walking but within the invisible prison. All the slightly too long of gaze of humans that seem like a silent scream of "We are humans too. Look." A tiger in a case who circles around in an anger who have zero control nor pathway to his escape. Zooming from the drone shot of the grid of camps to the ground where humans stand.
These are the moments of poetry that stood out to me. It wasn't clear to me if he wanted to go with humor, or poetry or politics, but maybe that's just Ai Wei Wei. He went with all three. I felt again like being invited to a date to a guy who just wanted to show me everything but without fully understanding who he is himself.
I walked out of the theater, with a growling stomach and one successfully communicated message to me, which is the importance of dignity in humanity in all of this. There is a quote by Stalin, "A single death is a tragedy; a million deaths is a statistic." Ai Wei Wei just elaborated this with images. Some shots will be engrained in my head forever (Together with random images of his selfies and haircuts which I still don't get... why) and so I guess whatever he tried worked.
Incredible drone footage put to good use.
is considered to be one of the largest refugees camps in the world with over 500,000 people.
Despite the harsh conditions of the camp, worked to better myself and help others. This is the best film I have ever seen telling the untold stories of worlds most vulnerable people refugees. I am Minnesota based refugees advocate
And can't wait to see this film. I was Literally about cry when I see the donkey cat in the picture.