The United Nations Association Film Festival, Travelling Film Festival’s mission is to present films that raise awareness, generate dialogue, inspire, and empower audiences to help change and improve the world both near and far. This one-day film festival is a celebration of the human spirit and resilience of mankind. UNAFF and Yellow Pad Sessions are proud to present a selection of through-provoking topical documentaries from around the globe where we look at ourselves through the eyes and realities of others, exploring a world in constant change. Introspection defies circumspection and challenges the status quo. This year’s edition features: Learning to Skateboard in A Warzone (If You’re A Girl), Serendipity, Drawn Together: Comics, Diversity and Stereotypes, and The Last Ice.

UNAFF TFF MTL 2021 is a branch of the original UNAFF in California. Conceived in 1998 at Stanford University by film critic and educator Jasmina Bojic in conjunction with the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the United Nations Association Film Festival (UNAFF) screens documentaries by international filmmakers dealing with topics such as human rights, environmental themes, women’s issues, children, refugee protection, homelessness, racism, disease control, universal education, war, and peace. By bringing together filmmakers, the academic community, and the general public, UNAFF offers a unique opportunity for creative exchange and education among groups and individuals often separated by geography, ethnicity, and economic constraints. For more details about the California programme, please visit www.unaff.org

“We’re very passionate about the power of art as a vehicle for social change at YPS. This festival in particular serves as a powerful platform to raise awareness and generate dialogue about our societal responsibilities and our collective human rights. I hope that UNAFF TFF MTL 2021 and its featured films will inspire compassion and bring about substantial change about issues that should be of great concern to anyone who sees themselves as part of a bigger world,” says Grace Sebeh Byrne, Co-founder and Executive Director of YPS. 

Movies and Trailers

Get to know the movies! 

You can watch the trailers and read a synopsis of each feature film below.

This year, we are presenting three themes: Resilient Children,

Art as a Tool for Social Change, & Environment, Indigeneity, and the Canadian Arctic.

Learning to Skateboard
in a War Zone (If You're a Girl)

SCREENING STARTS AT 1:00 PM

Afghanistan/US  |  2019  |  40 mins  |  OV English  |  ST Arabic 

 

Director: Carol Dysinger

 

Resilient Children

 

       Learning to Skateboard in a War Zone (If You’re a Girl) follows a class of girls at Skateistan, a nonprofit that began as a skate school in Kabul in 2007 and grew into a multinational educational initiative. Skateistan focuses on recruiting girls from impoverished neighborhoods to not only teach them to skateboard, but to help them gain courage and life skills that will transcend skateboarding and the classroom to help them thrive and adapt to the challenges that lie ahead. Over the course of the school year, the girls grow and become empowered through the joy of skateboarding and the warmth and inspiration of the women who teach them. The film won an Oscar for 'Best Documentary Short' at the 92nd academy awards. Director Carol Dysinger will attend the screening in person.

Drawn Together: Comics, Diversity and Stereotypes

SCREENING STARTS AT 2:45 PM

U.S.  |  2018  |  53 mins  |  OV English  

 

Director: Harleen Singh

 

Art as a Tool for Social Change

 

       The documentary traces the fascinating journey of three comic creators who challenge the notion of race, appearance, and gender stereotypes through cartoons, comics and cosplay. Featuring a Sikh, a woman, and an African American—who are challenging the racist stereotyping currently endemic in America through their work. The documentary provides the rare opportunity to explore the subjects of race, gender, and religion stereotyping through the universally popular medium of comic books and cartoons. Drawn Together boldly encourages viewers to unlearn stereotyping, look beyond the obvious, and confront media prejudices—all through an uncommon and inherently engaging everyday source.

Serendipity

SCREENING STARTS AT 4:30 PM

France/U.S.  |  2019  |  1h14m  |  OV English  |  ST French

 

Directors: Maia, Robert, Victoria, Prune Nourry.

Executive Director: Angelina Jolie

 

Art as a Tool for Social Change

 

       French Artist, Prune Nourry has spent her working life exploring issues around the human body. At the tender age of 31, Prune is diagnosed with breast cancer. She starts documenting her treatment and its effect on her own body, turning her medical odyssey into an intimate artistic undertaking that leads her to find new meaning in her work and its serendipitous relationship to her own survival.

The Last Ice

SCREENING STARTS AT 7:30 PM

Canada/Denmark/Greenland/U.S.  |  2020  |  1h23m  |  OV English  

 

Director: Scott Ressler

 

Environment, Indigeneity, and the Canadian Arctic

 

       As the sea ice between Canada and Greenland melts, the outside world sees unprecedented opportunity. Oil and gas deposits, faster shipping routes, tourism, and fishing all provide financial incentives to exploit the newly opened waters. But for more than 100,000 Inuit who live in the Arctic, on and around the frozen ocean, an entire way of life is at stake. Development here threatens to upset the balance between their communities, land, and wildlife, leaving the future of this region and their culture increasingly uncertain. Directed by Scott Ressler and executive produced by Dr. Enric Sala, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and founder of National Geographic Pristine Seas, THE LAST ICE, tells the story of Inuit communities fighting to protect the rapidly disappearing Arctic that has been their home for centuries.

COVID SITUATION VIS À VIS OUR FESTIVAL

Your health and safety is our primary concern. As a result, we’ve carefully selected a venue that adheres to the provincial government and health authorities’ guidelines. As of September 1st, vaccine passports will be required to attend non-essential activities, such as festivals, restaurants, and bars. The Cinéma du Musée currently has strict sanitation measures in place which you can consult here. Once the vaccine passport details are confirmed, Cinéma du Musée’s protocols will be updated on their website. In the meantime, you can obtain your QR code here if you haven’t done so already. Please, get fully vaccinated in order to take advantage of all the great social activities being offered by our city, including UNAFF TFF MTL 2021!