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Mark Cousins is a filmmaker who believes in the power of the cinema to change lives. Growing up in Ireland during a time when violence between Catholic and Protestant factions was common, Cousins knows the impact growing up in a chaotic time and place can have on youngsters, and he's set out to do something about it. Cousins has taken an interest in the children of Iraq, seeing a parallel between their circumstances and his own youth, and has made it his mission to use movies as a means of healing. First he created a traveling outdoor movie theater where youngsters could see classic children's films from around the world, from The Red Balloon to E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial, all free of charge. Then after acquainting them with the basics of cinema, he gave a number of children Flip digital cameras and encouraged them to make short films of their own. The First Movie is a documentary in which Cousins offers a look at his work in Iraq, as well as the short films the children made, allowing us to see a land we only know as a war zone through their eyes. The First Movie was an official selection at the 2011 South by Southwest Film Festival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi
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Audience Reviews for The First Movie
Beautiful scenes that show insight into children's lives, even in another, very different culture. The originality of the idea and mission merit credit, but the slow pace of the events unfolding may not appeal to some viewers.