The talk the day after the Academy Awards is about Argo’s win, Jennifer Lawrence’s fall and whether or not host Seth McFarlane was funny. The show ended with a song saluting the losers of the night. Two of those losers were documentary films that covered stories of health.
Open Heart was nominated in the short form category. It tells the story of eight Rwandan children who suffer from rheumatic heart disease. They must travel to Sudan’s Salam Center in order to undergo lifesaving open-heart surgery. It includes the dual story of Rwandan cardiologist Dr. Emmanuel Rusingiza, illustrating the challenges he faces, and Italian surgeon Dr. Gino Strada, the head surgeon at the Salam Center. Continue reading
Cross-posted from Seattle Globalist: A review of Half the Sky, a PBS film celebrated for championing women’s empowerment worldwide. This reviewer says the celebrities hurt this celebration.
By Cyan James
PBS via CLP
Actress Olivia Wilde hangs at the Umoja Women’s Village in Kenya as part of Half the Sky
Newsflash: being a woman is surreal.
Last night I was supposed to be at the gym. So I could look slimmer and prettier or something. But I had a headache. So I stayed on the couch, stumbled across human dolls on Facebook (seriously?!), and tuned in to the much-trumpeted nationwide premier of Half the Sky.
The documentary sprung from the book by Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn, carrying on the crusade against violence, discrimination, and lack of education visited upon women around the world.
These aren’t stories about women trying to lose weight and look prettier. They’re not vying for attention via extreme surgery. They’re not beating down Harvard’s doors, or scrambling for the next rung in the corporate ladder.
They’re just trying to take their next breath.
Kristof and his film crew whisk us through a worldwide tour of struggling women in struggling countries. From Sierra Leone to Vietnam, we’re introduced to a heartbreaking parade of teenage girls, each one fighting her very culture for a viable life, often with enough grace and forgiveness to keep smiling.