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Human Rights Watch (June 10th - June 19th, 2015)

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      Hooligan Sparrow, the Opening Night Film centers on Ye Haiyan, a.k.a. Hooligan Sparrow, a woman from the rural provence of China who became a sex worker before becoming an activist. She bravely speaks out against the injustice of a school principal who got away with six elementry school girls. Director Nanfu Wang is just as brave as Ye Haiyan because she risks her life to get footage in a country that suppresses and oppresss anyone who dares to question the government. There's even footage of Wang getting roughed up by someone, yet she still doesn't give up her struggle. Perhaps struggle is an essential part of any achievement. The fact that these smart and courageous indivuals are women is all the more refreshing and important---if only women everywhere around the world were to stand their ground and speak up no matter what the consequences. Powerful, poignant and illuminating, Hooligan Sparrow will keep you at the edge of your seat while opening your eyes to an urgent human rights issue. It opens July 22nd at Cinema Village.

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