In the spring of 2012, a massive student strike in opposition to a tuition hike, rocked the streets of the Montréal for over six months. Protests and mass direct-action on the street became part of daily and nightly reality. Several times during the tumultuous spring, the numbers in the streets would reach over one hundred thousand. Police routinely clubbed students and their allies, and arrested them by the hundreds. Some were even banned from entering the city. But every time the cops struck, the student movement got bigger and angrier. This is a story about how the arrogance of a government underestimated a dedicated group of students, who through long-term organising, laid the foundation for some of the largest mass demonstrations in Canada's history.
Perfect Storm offers an initial analysis of the underlying causes and wider context surrounding the riots throughout England in 2011. Contrary to the portrayals presented by mainstream media and trite political rhetoric around law and order, were the riots sparked by poverty, inequality and frustration over police killing a young man in Tottenham? And how does the damage weigh up to the criminal conduct of banks and corporate tax avoiders when the costs of the riots are 4,320 times less of the recent financial crisis?
In June 2010, leaders from the twenty largest economies met in Toronto, Canada with representatives of corporate interests to discuss the policies that shape globalisation. With exclusion zones, overlapping layers of security fencing and an estimated 25,000 police and military personnel, the city was transformed into an armed grid. Over 1.3 billion dollars were spent on security measures -- more than all previous G8 or G20 meetings combined. Tales From The G20 shows some sides of the Summit, from unmarked vans with snatch squads of plainclothes police to the pre-emptive arrest of people now facing years in prison for organising demonstrations or simply being on the street...
On October 15th 2007, a series of intense police raids occurred around the small village of Ruatoki in New Zealand. Operation 8, as it was called, was the result of 18 months of invasive surveillance of Maori sovereignty and peace activists accused of attending 'terrorist training camps' in the Urewera ranges -- the homeland of the indigenous Tuhoe people. This film examines why and how the raids took place -- did the War on Terror become a global witch-hunt of political dissenters reaching even to the South Pacific?
Between 1970 and 1972, a group of activists used weapons to symbolically attack property, sparked by demonstrations in London against the Vietnam War. Calling themselves the Angry Brigade, the group published a series of communiqués with the actions, explaining the choice of targets and the philosophy. Targets included the embassies of repressive regimes, police stations, army barracks, boutiques, factories, government departments and the homes of Cabinet ministers, the Attorney General and the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police. The attacks on senior authority figures increased the desire for 'results' and consequently brought an avalanche of police raids. But from the start the police were faced with the difficulty of getting to grips with the section of society they found to be totally alien -- were they facing an organisation, or an idea?
Just Do It -- A Tale of Modern-Day Outlaws follows a group of activists in the UK to document their protests and actions over one year dealing with issues around climate change. Demonstrations at Copenhagen’s 2009 G20 summit and at the Drax coal power station in North Yorkshire, England, are just some of the events documented.
By examining the modern culture of industrial civilisation and the persistent widespread violence and environmental exploitation it requires, END:CIV details the resulting epidemic of poisoned landscapes and shell-shocked nations, while further delving into the history of resistance and the prospect of fighting back against such abuse. Detailed is an overview of the environmental movement analogous with the historical whitewashings of the 'pacifist' social struggles in India with Gandhi and Martin Luther King in the United States; the rise of greenwashing and the fallacy that all can be repaired by personal consumer choices. Based in part on 'Endgame', the best-selling book by Derrick Jensen, END:CIV asks: If your homeland was invaded by aliens who cut down the trees, poisoned the water, the air, contaminated the food supply and occupied the land by force, would you fight back?
Shot by over 100 media activists, this film tells the story of the enormous street protests in Seattle, Washington in November 1999, against the World Trade Organisation summit being held there. Vowing to oppose, among other faults, the WTO's power to arbitrarily overrule nations' environmental, social and labour policies in favour of unbridled corporate greed, protesters from all around came out in force to stop the summit. Against them is a brutal police force and a hostile media...
Teenage sisters detained for 36 hours for a peaceful protest; an RAF war veteran arrested for wearing an anti-Bush and Blair T-shirt; an innocent man shot in a police raid; and a man is held under house arrest for two years, after being found innocent in court. Ordinary law-abiding citizens being punished for exercising their rights--right to protest, right to freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, right to privacy, to be detained without charge, to be innocent until proven guilty, prohibition from torture...
Unwritten Future documents the events during the Republican National Convention in 2008 where excessive use of force and questionable tactics by police are on full show. Radio host Amy Goodman is arrested. The film is dispersed with interviews with activists, asking them what they are fighting for, contrasted with police response and the aftermath...
5th June 1989, Tiananmen Square, Beijing. After weeks of mass killing, oppression and violence by the Chinese government against it's own people, the image of a lone man standing defiant with his shopping to a line of tanks still lives on...
The Australian Federal Police--the glamour police force that was set-up after the Sydney Hilton Hotel Bombing in 1978--has enjoyed consistent showers of praise by politicians and the public ever since it's inception. However, the once-lionised AFP is now being ridiculed for bungling, excessive secrecy and collusion after the catastrophic failings of the "terrorism case" against Dr Mohammed Haneef. Good Cop, Bad Cop reveals how the Haneef case is a symptom of the deep cultural problems that beset the AFP...
Law Professor James Duane and Police Officer George Bruch explain why even innocent people should never talk to the police...
The Secret Policeman exposes first hand evidence of racism in the British police forces, revealing how much it has been driven underground since 2002 when a government inquiry branded the police as institutionally racist. Undercover journalist Mark Daly joins the Greater Manchester Police as a trainee, and infiltrates Bruche Police Training Centre in Warrington, Cheshire for several months using hidden cameras to capture direct instances of racism throughout the police force.
For 20 years the NSW Crime Commission went about its business with drugs quietly. When it scored a bust, it stood back and let politicians and the police bask in credit. But all that changed with the sensational arrest of the commission's assistant director, Mark Standen, on charges of trafficking drugs. His spectacular downfall threw a spotlight onto the Crime Commission's remarkable array of powers and how it abuses them. Secret hearings, witnesses compelled to answer questions, broad powers of search and surveillance, no independent review process...
Lethal Force takes a detailed look at four incidents, in different parts of Australia, where people suffering mental illness or psychological distress died after being shot or tasered by police. Specifically detailed is how in certain cases, the victims had even sought help at hospital and after having left of their own free will, were shot dead by police...
The Miami model shows tactics employed by police during demonstrations in Miami, Florida relating to the negotiations for the Free Trade Area of the Americas (FTAA) trade agreement in November 2003, with a State Attorney coining the term by responding to allegations of police brutality by saying "The police were very professional, very controlled... I think we have a model here for the rest of the world to emulate in the future when these sort of events take place."
Using camera footage recorded by protesters at the scene of the World Trade Organisation riots in the United States during November 1999, Breaking The Spell documents the events of the time from the perspective of the activists, following the massive 'controversial' street protests and ensuing confrontations with police. Rather than attempting to cover every situation at the WTO, Breaking the Spell covers a few scenes in depth, filmed in the thick of the action, including footage that aired nationally on 60 Minutes...
In 1978, Australia was shocked by the explosion of a massive bomb placed in a rubbish bin outside the Sydney Hilton Hotel in NSW. The perpetrators were never found. However, evidence that the Australian security and intelligence forces may have been responsible resulted in the NSW State Parliament unanimously calling for an inquiry in 1991 and then again in 1995. The Federal Government vetoed any inquiry. No investigation was held. The government then set-up the Australian Federal Police and increased support for "anti-terrorist measures"...
S11 documents protest actions in Melbourne, Australia, 2000 against the World Economic Forum meeting. Specific accounts of police brutality and ferocious attacks on people protesting national and international issues are captured, in direct contradiction with mainstream media coverage, portraying activists as violent protesters.
Orgreave in the North of England was the focal point for a mass protest by miners in June 1984. At this time, miners were angry over proposed pit closures and reacted by striking and pressurising other pits to close. The culmination of these protests was a mass gathering of miners from all over the country at Orgreave. On the morning of 18th June miners were escorted into Orgreave. At this point. police tactics already resembled a military campaign. After a push by the miners. the police acted with force, charging the pickets on horses. The protest soon turned violent with the police deploying dogs, batons and guns in an attempt to suppress the riot. The Battle for Orgreave interviews defendants directly about their experiences of Orgreave, and how those experiences changed their life...
In 1981, the New Zealand government invited the South African rugby team to tour New Zealand. This effectively split the country in half as the rugby tour was seen by some as endorsement of South Africa's apartheid regime. Patu! recounts the mass civil disobedience that took place throughout New Zealand during the winter of 1981, in protest against the South African rugby tour. Sports grounds and suburban streets became battlefields as the film recounts visceral images of massive protest actions met with police brutality. Patu! is a record of heroism, and for many young people taking to the streets, it was their 1968. Māori and Pākehā, children and grandparents, gang members and clergymen--all in a moment of rare consensus, stood together to affirm shared values.