HOOLI­GAN SPAR­ROW

NOW Magazine - Hot Docs - - Reviews -

(Nanfu Wang, U. S., UK, China). 84 min­utes. Rat­ing: NNNN This raw and star­tling doc isn’t about young rape vic­tims in China and the in­sti­tu­tions that en­able the cul­prits. In­stead, it’s about the meth­ods used to si­lence ac­tivists who draw at­ten­tion to those prob­lems.

Ye Haiyan, dubbed Hooli­gan Spar­row, or­ga­nizes protests to pub­li­cize the plight of vul­ner­a­ble girls. If Ye barely gets a chance to speak to the cor­rup­tion in­volved, it’s be­cause thugs and po­lice are con­stantly chas­ing and in­tim­i­dat­ing her and the film­maker.

The film takes the shape of a fugi­tive thriller as we get glimpses on the run of the net­worked law en­force­ment and their but­ton push­ers try­ing to keep things quiet, of­ten re­sort­ing to as­sault and un­law­ful ar­rests. The sur­viv­ing footage is a vic­tory for ac­tivism. RS Apr 28, 9:30 pm, TIFF 2; Apr 29, 4:15 pm, TIFF 1; May 6, 10 am, TIFF 1

HOOLI­GAN SPAR­ROW

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