100% Human (100% Menneske)

Norway 2004 73min Subtitled
Dirs: Trond Winterkjaer & Jan Dalchow

100% Human

With beguiling honesty and humour, Monica’s vibrant personality takes us through her painful, but ultimately liberating, personal voyage that gently challenges the conventional definitions of gender. Monica was born Morten and grew up a normal little Norwegian girl living inside a boy’s body. But with puberty, as Morten becomes more physically male, Monica becomes more psychologically female. At the age of 22, Monica decides to undergo surgery to make her body fit her real sex. Her mother believes that it is saving her life. Using lyrical and reflective inserts, re-enactments and poignant music performances, Monica discusses the complex personal and social issues of her decision. She expresses her fears and anxieties, as well as her tender excitement at a future as a whole beautiful young woman.

Courtesy of the Norwegian Film Institute

CAPE TOWN FRI 21 6.45pm

51 Birch Street

USA 2005 90min
Dir: Doug Block

When exploring your parent’s past, beware what you might find! In this bittersweet investigation into his parent’s relationship, Doug Block dug deep and whilst reflecting on love, marriage and fidelity, found more than he expected.

In looking at his parent’s 54 year marriage, the filmmaker thought in relative terms. He was close to his mother, and found his father distant. But when his mother dies, he uses his camera to come to terms with his loss and to bridge the paternal-filial gap. All is going to plan until his father announces that he is marrying his former secretary, Kitty. He is also selling the family home and moving to Miami. The announcement dredges up questions about his parent’s love, and the move unearths his mother’s diaries, reams of her most intimate thoughts and secrets. No-one is what they appear to be.

JOHANNESBURG SUN 16 8.30pm WED 19 6.45pm
CAPE TOWN SAT 22 8pm SAT 29 6.15pm FRI 4 6.45pm

The American Ruling Class

USA 2005 90min
Dir: John Kirby

The American Ruling Class

America prides itself on a Dream: anyone can attain greatness. But is this really true? Does an American ruling class exist, and if it does, how does one gain entry? Harper’s editor, Lewis Lapham, is intrigued. He sends two actors, posing as Ivy League graduates, out into the world to interview a high-calibre array of American leaders, from Hodding Carter III (Emmy award-winning journalist, Jimmy Carter spokesman) to Walter Cronkite, Robert Altman to James Baker III (Reagan’s Chief of Staff and Secretary of the Treasury). Through various songs and fascinating interviews with powerful men (and one woman) at the top of their game, this probing and provocative satire alters its initial course. The original question becomes one of ascertaining whether the ruling class has given in to blind ambition – and if new entrants can ever hope to do well, or do good.

Courtesy of the Cactus Three

JOHANNESBURG SUN 16 6pm TUE 18 8.30pm
CAPE TOWN SUN 23 8.15pm TUE 1 6.30pm SAT 5 6.15pm

Another Road Home

USA 2004 77min
Dir: Danae Elon

Another Road Home

Danae, only child of respected Israeli-Jewish author Amos Elon, was raised by Musa Obeidallah, a Palestinian man. Everyday, determined to pay for the education of his eight sons in the States, Musa placed himself in danger crossing the barricades and curfews of Jerusalem to care for Danae. Now, still feeling emotionally attached to him, she wants to know how and where he is. Her mission starts in Patterson, New Jersey, where Musa’s sons now live. When she finds them, they have many difficult, discomforting questions for her before she can see their father again. In a conflict where every social interaction is informed – and often deformed – by politics, this tale of reconnection is a refreshing and affecting approach that transcends, and highlights, the Israeli-Palestine issue.

Best Documentary & Jury Award. Tursak Film Festival Istanbul.

Courtesy of the Director

JOHANNESBURG SAT 15 6pm WED 19 8.45pm
CAPE TOWN SAT 22 6.15pm SUN 30 8pm

The Black Road

Australia 2005 52min Subtitles
Dir: William Nessen

The Black Road

Most people will have heard of Aceh as a place devastated during the Tsunami. But what they do not know is that Aceh and its warm-hearted, brave and resilient people have been engaged in a long struggle against the Indonesian army and government. This extraordinary and powerful film begins when journalist Nessen first arrives in Aceh and interviews General Yudhoyono (now, resident of Indonesia), who is trying to quell the dissidents. But Nessen decides he wants to balance both sides, and so he ventures into the bush, joining the rebels, meeting the villagers and insurgents on the way. As he becomes inexorably engrossed in the people and their cause, Nessen repeatedly places himself in personal danger to present the Acehnese conflict and the atrocities they continue to endure at the hands of the Indonesian government.

Best Film of the Festival. Mumbai International Film Festival 2006

Courtesy of the Director

Screens with The Death of Kevin Carter

JOHANNESBURG TUE 18 6.30pm SAT 22 8.30pm
CAPE TOWN TUE 25 8.45pm THU 3 6.30pm

Conflict Tiger

UK 2005 60min Subtitles
Dir: Sasha Snow

Conflict Tiger

On the far eastern edge of the newly capitalist Russia, poachers and animals compete for resources in a vast forest wilderness. In the USSR there were jobs for all and less impact on the forest, but recent encounters between man and beast have escalated into violence and when the mauled body of a well-known poacher is found, all evidence points to him having been stalked by a massive, wounded tiger. The Conflict Tiger patrol steams in to investigate. This gripping and impressive documentary presents the views of the poachers, patrollers and the tiger, and in doing so, sympathetically portrays the life-threatening issues encountered by men and animals when forced to share the same space. It also shows a little seen, fascinating part of the world, and sheds light on the complex challenges faced by the environment and 21st-Century civilization.

Grand Prize. 54th Trento Film Festival 2006
Audience Award. Green Film Festival Seoul 2006
AMAP Prize. EcoVision, Palma Sicily 2006

Courtesy of the Director

JOHANNESBURG SUN 16 2.30pm THU 20 6.45pm
CAPE TOWN MON 24 6.30pm SUN 30 6.15pm

Dave Chappelle’s Block Party

USA 2005 102min
Dir: Michel Gondry

Dave Chappelle’s Block Party

One day, a guy decides he wants to hold a party in the backyard. He’s gonna invite the neighbours, hire a sound system, get in some friends from out-of-town, get some others to play a few tunes, and maybe get a friend to film it. ‘Cept this ain’t just any guy. This is comedian David Chappelle, the backyard is Brooklyn, his friends are the Ohio Central State University marching band, Kanye West, Mos Def, Talib Kweli, Common, Dead Prez, Erykah Badu, Jill Scott, the Roots, Cody ChesnuTT, and Big Daddy Kane. Some other mates, The Fugees, get back together after seven years, ‘specially. There’re rehearsals before the gig, and then there’s the film-dude, who, it happens, is Oscar®-winning director Michel Gondry. It’s a celebration of comedy and music, history and community. It’s a party like you’ve never seen.

Courtesy of Ster-Kinekor

JOHANNESBURG FRI 14 8.45pm TUE 18 8.30pm
CAPE TOWN SAT 22 8.15pm SAT 29 8.15pm FRI 4 8.45pm

The Death of Kevin Carter: Casualty of the BANG BANG Club

USA 2004 27min
Dir: Dan Kraus

The Death of Kevin Carter

During the final death throes of apartheid, four photographers grouped together to document the township violence before South Africa’s first elections in 1994. Their fearless and reckless attitude soon earned them a reputation and the infamous moniker, The Bang Bang Club. International fame visited Kevin Carter, his celebrated picture of a starving child shadowed by a vulture in Sudan earned him a Pulitzer Prize. A few weeks later on the verge of witnessing a new South Africa, he committed suicide. Through interviews with friends, colleagues, family and his girlfriend, this Oscar®-nominated film sketches together his life and probable reasons for his death. It presents a brilliant but troubled young man whose professional choices caused him to party too hard, care too much, and become terrified of an ‘uneventful’ change in the status quo.

Best Short Documentary 2005. Tribeca Film Festival.
Oscar© Nominee 2006

Courtesy of the Director

Screens with The Black Road

JOHANNESBURG TUE 18 6.30pm SAT 22 8.30pm
CAPE TOWN TUE 25 8.45pm THU 3 6.30pm

Dreaming by Numbers

Netherlands 2005 75min
Dir: Anna Bucchetti

Dreaming by Numbers

The Lotto is a global phenomenon – who hasn’t played the Lotto? But in Naples, Italy, superstition is an integral part of daily life, and playing the numbers takes on a whole new prophetic dimension. This warm and captivating black and white film focuses its attention on one lotto shop that has been open over 100 years, and a transvestite bingo organiser. Punters come in every day to relate their dreams and consult the gentle women behind the counter and the ancient almanac that lists every ‘item’ in numerical form. Commonplace items include a father – 81, a foot is 53, but the list is fantastic, accommodating the weirdest of dreams… This widely believed number theory interprets the past, explains dreams, predicts the future and ultimately might win that person a small fortune.

Vesuvio & Ateneapoli Awards. Naples Film Festival 2006
Millennium Award. PlanetDoc Review, Warsaw 2006.

Courtesy of Armadillo Films

JOHANNESBURG SUN 16 6.30pm SUN 23 7.45pm
CAPE TOWN FRI 28 6.30pm SUN 30 7.45pm

Enron: the Smartest Guys in the Room

USA 2005 109min
Dir: Alex Gibney


Named “America’s Most Innovative Company” for six consecutive years, Enron’s downfall created a national scandal. This compelling film tells the complex tale of the prodigious rise and abrupt 2001 demise of the US’ seventh largest corporation in scrupulous detail. The Enron saga, lead by recently convicted media-darlings Lay and Skilling, reveals an immoral trail of predatory practices, inferred links to the Presidency and Arnie (California’s Governor), cooked books, and soaring stock prices that led to massive unemployment, a state energy crisis and national financial uncertainty.
In this darkly comic autopsy of massive corporate mismanagement, news footage, emails, voice recordings and credible first-person accounts are cleverly interlinked with corporate videos, morale-boosting speeches, acquisition announcements and even corporate-approved comedy sketches that allow Lay and Skilling to hang themselves with their own words and actions.

Oscar® Nominee 2006
Independent Spirit Award USA 2006
Best Documentary Screenplay. Writers Guild of America 2006

Courtesy of Nu Metro

JOHANNESBURG FRI 14 8.30pm SAT 22 2.15pm
CAPE TOWN WED 26 8.30pm SUN 6 6.15pm

Excellent Cadavers (In un altro Paese)

Italy / USA 2005 92min
Dir: Marco Turco

Excellent Cadavers

In the 1970s, the omnipotent power of the Scillian Mafia, that had secretly driven Italian commerce and politics, began a grizzly campaign that held the people to ransom and destroyed rival bosses and detractors alike. In the 1980s and 90s two doggedly determined and audacious prosecutors, Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino, fought through the system to bring the to justice. Millions of Italians watched stunned, as the organisation’s secrets, methodical murders and ‘disappearances’ were revealed, and hundreds of the Mafia’s most powerful men were convicted. But just as the prosecutors appeared to be victorious, politicians undermined their heroic efforts – ultimately signing their death warrant. This absorbingly scrupulous film uses interviews, archival footage, and shocking news photos to chronicle the unwholesome relationship between the Mafia and the highest levels of politics in contemporary Italy.

Best Documentary. Festival dei Popoli Florence 2005

Courtesy of the Director

JOHANNESBURG SAT 15 4pm THU 20 8.45pm
CAPE TOWN SUN 23 6pm WED 2 8.45pm

Favela Rising

USA 2005 80min Subtitled
Dirs: Matt Mochary & Jeff Zimbalist

Favela Rising

In Rio de Janerio the residents of the slumslive in a perpetual cycle of violence instigated by teenage gangs who wage war on other districts. In this powerful and inspirational story Anderson Sá, already immune to the night sounds of gun shots and screaming, was just 10 years old when he saw a man executed on the street of his notorious district of Vigário Geral. In 1993 when his brother, one of 21 innocent bystanders, was killed in an infamous retaliation raid by the police, Anderson decides that the fear and bloodshed must stop. Using his charisma to transformational effect, he challenges the violent status quo and spreads this alternative message through AfroReggae, an electric fusion of hip-hop, reggae and African-Brazilian music and dance.

Best Feature Documentary. IDA 2005
Best Documentary Audience Award. Leeds IFF
Best New Documentary Filmmaker. Tribeca 2005

Courtesy of HBO

JOHANNESBURG SUN 16 8.15pm WED 19 6.30pm
CAPE TOWN FRI 21 6.30pm MON 31 8.30pm SUN 6 4.15pm

Friends of Kim

Netherlands 2006 55min
Dirs: Hans van Dijk & Raphael Wilking

Friends of Kim

North Korea remains a political pariah. But is this just the result of a capitalist global media and American imperialism? The idealistic, young male members of the Korean Friends Association (KFA) – led by Alejandro, a Spanish aristocratic – think so. In 2004, for $1,500 per person, the KFA organised a Reunification March that promises a 12 day, magical mystery tour of the ‘real’ Korea. It begins with a PR junket, a much-publicised march down a deserted highway in protest of Korea’s continued separation, watched by 4,000 citizens. Juxtaposing idealism with reality, the film is alternately entertaining, disquieting and thought provoking. It reaches its zenith when invited ABC cameraman, Andrew Morse, offends Alejandro and has to sign an admission of guilt in order to be allowed to leave the country.

Courtesy of FilmsTransit & the Directors

CAPE TOWN SAT 29 6.30pm THU 3 6.45pm

Gitmo: The New Rules of War

Sweden 2005 76min Subtitles
Dirs: Erik Gandini & Tarik Saleh


Within the fences of Guantanamo Bay – nicknamed Gitmo – 637 people have been held, suspected of terrorism. The filmmakers are interested in one, Mehdi Ghezali, a Swedish citizen. His father’s daily protests accuse the Americans of torture techniques that defy the Geneva Convention. The filmmakers decide to investigate and travel to Guantanamo. The flight is free, the sea blue, the sun shining, the iguanas feisty, the marines chirpy, the recreational facilities extensive and the camp commander, General Miller, personable. Indeed, everything is peachy at Gitmo. But the filmmakers dig a little deeper and find a world where the rules of interrogation are extended, perfected and exported to Abu Ghraib, where human rights’ abuses are swept under a carpet of fall guys, and where language has been re-assigned to protect the not-so-innocent.

Courtesy of the Swedish Film Institute & the Directors

JOHANNESBURG SAT 15 8.45pm FRI 21 6.30pm
CAPE TOWN FRI 28 8.30pm TUE 1 8.45pm FRI 4 6.30pm


UK 2006 138min
Dir: Julien Temple


This rambling, but no less enthralling history of the Glastonbury festival is a must-see for any modern music lover. In 1970 an unconventional young farmer, Michael Eavis, instigated a musical get-together that attracted 1,500 hippies to his field under the famous mythical mound. In 2005, 35 years on, Glastonbury is still a controversial annual English institution that hauls in 112,000 festival-goers. The festival has not only showcased some of the greatest musicians of modern times, it has also been an alternative barometer of Britain’s socio-political style, music, attitudes and identity. Interspersed with stellar performances from Pulp to Radiohead, Coldplay to David Bowie, Bjork to Rolf Harris, 900 hours of festival footage is condensed into this often amusing, always pulsating, roller-coaster-ride homage to the festival and the people who survive it year after year.

Courtesy of Nu Metro

CAPE TOWN FRI 21 8.30pm SAT 5 8.15pm

Iraq in Fragments

USA 2005 94min Subtitled
Dir: James Longley

Iraq in Fragments

Presenting an Iraq that you have not yet seen on the news, this illuminating film is separated into three portraits from the Sunni, Shiite and Kurdish communities. Each embodies vastly different reference points, religious beliefs, political aims and realities.

We meet fatherless Mohammed, the sole breadwinner in his family, who forsakes school to be bullied by a gruff mechanic in downtown Baghdad. We travel south to meet Sheik Aws al Kafaji, a core member of the Shiite political/religious movement of Moqtada Sadr as it manoeuvres regional elections and enforces its brand of Islamic law on the populous. In the North Kurdish farmers eke out a living with wheat and sunflowers, whilst asserting their bid for independence. These deeply intimate portraits show that the on-going conflict in this embattled and fractured country is painful, complex and far from resolved.

Best Director, Editing, Cinematography – Documentary. Sundance 2006
Grand Jury Prize. Full Frame Documentary Festival 2006

JOHANNESBURG TUE 18 6.30pm SUN 23 6.30pm
CAPE TOWN THU 27 8.45pm MON 31 6.30pm

Leila Khaled Hijacker

Sweden 2005 58min Subtitled
Dir: Lina Makboul

Leila Khaled Hijacker

In 1969, TWA flight 840 was hijacked, the intention to broadcast the desperate plight of the Palestinian people. It was not only the unexpected act that created the media frenzy, but the beauty and sex of one of the hijackers. Overnight Palestinian Leila Khaled became a notorious revolutionary figure, the first woman hijacker – and then, a year and a few face-disguising surgical procedures later, she did it again. Although as a child Makboul, a Palestinian-Swedish filmmaker, admired Khaled for the courage of her convictions, she found that adulthood brought more complex questions relating, not only to Palestinian terrorism but, to Khaled-the-myth and Khaled-the-reality. Twenty-five years after her notorious début, Makboul travels to Jordan to find a dignified, very human sixty-year old Khaled who lives an ordinary life with her husband and two sons.

Courtesy of the Director

JOHANNESBURG WED 19 8.30pm SAT 22 6.30pm
CAPE TOWN SUN 23 8pm WED 26 6.30pm SUN 6 8.15pm

Loving Maradona (Amando a Maradona)

Argentina 2005 75min Subtitled
Dir: Javier M. Vazquez

Loving Maradona

In a football mad world, one figure has become a living deity. The epitome of the rags to riches story, Diego Maradona’s ability to master the ball and score goals has instilled adoration on an international scale – men, mostly, engrave his image on their bodies, celebrate his birthday, write songs about him, create shrines and cry at the mention of his name and the greatness of his feet’s feats. Always a controversial figure, this fascinating sketch begins, as Maradona himself did, in the slum of Villa Fiorito, Buenos Aires. There we meet his childhood friend who ekes out a living in the still poor neighbourhood, and then his first coaches, his family, the managers of Argentina’s national team, the citizens of Naples and Barcelona, and finally a much larger Maradona.

Courtesy of the Director

JOHANNESBURG TUE 18 6.45pm SUN 23 6.15pm
CAPE TOWN TUE 25 9pm WED 2 8.30pm

Mad Hot Ballroom

USA 2005 105min
Dir: Marylin Agrelo

Mad Hot Ballroom

In New York, eleven-year-olds from all walks of life, communities and opportunities compete in the annual Schools Ballroom Dancing Competition. This uplifting and enchanting film, which will have you clapping and cheering, charts the first tentative and awkward dance steps of three disparate classes from Primary Schools hailing from trendy Tribeca, uptown drug-infested Washington Heights and Italian/Asian Brooklyn. With the competition looming ten weeks away, the classmates learn to rumba, meringue, tango, foxtrot, to swing and deport themselves with grace. Some of the kids are troubled and rebellious and it is a joy to see them claim the spotlight with such finesse, but the strength in this endearing film comes from its astute glimpse into the mind and aspirations of vital, straight-talking and engaging average New York kids on the verge of adolescence.

Audience Award. Philadelphia Film Festival 2005

JOHANNESBURG FRI 14 6.30pm SUN 23 8.30pm
CAPE TOWN THU 27 8.30pm SUN 6 8.30pm

My Grandmother’s House (La Casa de mi Abuela)

Spain 2005 80min Subtitled
Dir: Adán Aliaga

My Grandmother’s House

Her whole married life 75 year-old Marita has spent in the house her husband built. Set in her routine, feisty and religious, Marita’s house is the site of daily battles with rats, tea parties with her friends, endless hours watching TV and the place her favourite, charmingly precocious grand-daughter, Marina, comes to be reprimanded by her. Then, one day, Marita’s daughter informs her that her house has been sold to the developers. She has a few months to pack up and leave. The industrial backdrop of their town keenly conveys the emotional impact of Marita’s devastation, worry and loss. Beautifully constructed, layered and textured, touching on family, tradition and home, this film is an intimate and tender portrayal.

Best Documentary: Joris Ivens Award IDFA 2005
Terra Nova Silver Images Award. Chicago IFF 2005

Courtesy of the Director

JOHANNESBURG FRI 14 6.45pm MON 17 8.45pm
CAPE TOWN SUN 23 6.00pm THU 3 8.45pm

Our Brand is Crisis

USA 2005 87min
Dir: Rachel Boynton

Our Brand is Crisis

Controversial Gonzalo “Goni” Sanchez de Lozada is determined to reclaim the presidency in Bolivia’s February 2002 election, despite a disastrous previous term in office. So determined is he that he hauls in the big guns, GCS Consulting. Purportedly there to promote Goni’s liberal democratic policies, GCS orchestrates an American-style, marketing-based political operation complete with focus groups and soft lens ads to downplay Goni’s arrogance, and orchestrated smear campaigns against Goni’s opponents, who are Evo, the militant champion of the Coca-farmer, and Manfred, the bouffant ex-mayor. This remarkable fly-on-the-wall film reveals the tense, effective political manoeuvrings of a methodically professional team, just as civil-discontent increases to an alarming level. It is a taut, dramatic lesson in what democracy truly means, and how the political corruption of supposedly liberal political mercenaries can affect a nation.

Winner: 2005 Full Frame Documentary Festival
Best Feature Documentary Award. IDA 2005

Courtesy of FilmsTransit and the Director

JOHANNESBURG MON 17 6.30pm SAT 22 4.30pm
CAPE TOWN FRI 28 6.30pm WED 2 6.30pm


Our Daily Bread (Unser Täglich Brot)

Austria 2005 75min
Dir: Nikolaus Geyrhalter

Our Daily Bread

Across Europe food production marches on, day and night in a clinically efficient, relentlessly mechanised process that provides fresh tomatoes, steak, milk and olives. People, animals, and crops become cogs in the working wheels of massive machines that range from combine harvesters to olive tree shakers, robotic spraying devices to rotating milking centres, cutters to conveyor belts, and salt diggers to fish vacuums. Without commentary this elegiac film is sometimes horrifying, occasionally comical but always fascinating, and presents questions about the impact on the environment, and the nature of the food we eat. Beautifully framed, each surreal, muted, and mesmerising scene represents a rhythmic, clinical, apocalyptic vision that is entirely divorced from the Farmer Brown of our imaginations.

Special Jury Award IDFA 2005
Best Film Ecocinema IFF Athens 2006

Courtesy of the Austrian Film Commission

Screens with Johnny Appels –The Last Strandloper

JOHANNESBURG THU 13 8pm SUN 23 8.15pm
CAPE TOWN THU 20 8pm MON 31 8.30pm FRI 4 8.45pm

The Real Dirt on Farmer John

USA 2005 82min
Dir: Taggart Siegel

The Real Dirt on Farmer John

Flamboyantly swathed in a fuchsia feather boa, John ain’t your typical farmer. Yet John Peterson is exactly that – in love with the land and its way of life. John inherited his farm at a fairly young age, and while working it, went to college where he fell in love with art and self-expression, picked up a few ideas about life, and earned the censure of his community, which spread rumours of Satanism, sex-orgies and animal sacrifices. Irreverent and determined, Farmer John has experienced the highs and lows of America’s mid-western farming industry. He’s had to sell land to the banks, was shunned by all, and at the end of his tether risked everything on organic produce and, finally, won. His curious and heartfelt story charts the consequences of an unconventional approach to life.

Best Documentary. Nashville Film Festival 2005
Audience Award Best Documentary. Slamdance Film Festival 2005

JOHANNESBURG SUN 16 4pm WED 19 8.45pm
CAPE TOWN FRI 21 8.45pm THU 27 6.30pm

Saddam Hussein: the Trial (Histoire d’un procès)

France 2005 110min Subtitled
Dir: Jean-Pierre Krief

Saddam Hussein

When Saddam Hussein was captured, the world wondered what would happen next. While we waited, Jean-Pierre Krief traversed Iraq, Jordan, Spain, France and the US, meeting up with legal experts, members of the Iraqi Special Court (ISC), Saddam Hussein’s defence team and Hussein’s victims. His mission: to determine whether, given the present situation in Iraq, the country’s former President will receive a fairer trial than any he gave his people, party or even family members. Beginning with grainy footage of the ‘trail’ and subsequent execution of 21 Ba’ath Party members in 1979, this complex, but enlightening investigation winds a fairly impartial course, letting the personal accounts and facts speak for themselves, to offer a fresh look at Saddam, and his old allies (now new enemies) who indirectly colluded in past atrocities.

Courtesy of the Director

JOHANNESBURG FRI 14 8.45pm FRI 21 8.30pm
CAPE TOWN TUE 25 6.30pm SAT 5 6pm

Shadow Company

Canada 2006 86min
Dirs: Nick Bicanic & Jason Bourque

Shadow Company

In Iraq, there is a private army of 20,000 that are referred to as ‘private security contractors’ and which outnumber the combined non-US coalition ground forces. In the last century, these mercenaries were deployed as tactical interference in dodgy African states. After 9/11 the mercenary industry boomed and now highly-trained, professional outfits compete with gung-ho ones that were formed to fulfil the lucrative demands in Iraq where, accountable to no nation or court, they are a law unto themselves. In this insightful, explicit and balanced documentary, these dogs of war come under the spotlight. The filmmakers interview lucid, likeable professional ‘soldiers of fortune’, several ‘consultants’ in Iraq, historical experts, authors, political strategist and the creator of the A-Team to understand where these guys come from, what they do, why they do it.

Courtesy of the Director

JOHANNESBURG SUN 16 2pm THU 20 8.30pm
CAPE TOWN MON 24 8pm THU 3 8.15pm