Documentarian Judith Ehrlich’s “The Boys Who Said No!” about young people who actively resisted the Vietnam War screens Oct. 25, closing the United Nations Association Film Festival. (Courtesy photo)

Documentarian Judith Ehrlich’s “The Boys Who Said No!” about young people who actively resisted the Vietnam War screens Oct. 25, closing the United Nations Association Film Festival. (Courtesy photo)

United Nations Association Film Festival offers big slate of human rights documentaries

11 days of programs showcase international films focusing on social justice

Opening Oct. 15 and running though Oct. 25, the 23rd annual United Nations Association Film Festival brings its programming of international documentaries touching on human rights and social justice issues, with the theme “The Power of Empathy,” online.

Some 60 films highlighting current events are in the festival, which also includes a 6 p.m. Zoom panel discussion each evening featuring filmmakers, film subjects and experts on topics explored during the day’s lineup.

Opening day features “The Last Mambo,” about struggles and successes of Bay Area salsa, Latin and jazz perfomers, by Rita Hargrave and Reginald D. Brown; “The Great American Lie,” about the rise of income equality in the U.S., by Jennifer Siebel Newsom; and “A Black Jesus,” about what transpires in a small Italian town when a young refugee from Ghana asks to be one of the bearers of a venerated black Jesus statue an annual religious parade, by Luca Luchesssi.

Closing day on Oct. 25 features “Bureau 39: Kim’s Cash Machine,” which details how North Korea finances its hefty nuclear weapons program via an organization buried deep inside the government apparatus, by German director Sebastian Weis. Also on the closing bill is “The Boys Who Said No!,” about the young people who took action to oppose the draft in efforts to end the Vietnam War, by Judith Ehrlich, shown in collaboration with the Mill Valley Film Festival. The evening’s live online session features singer and activist Joan Baez, who will receive the festival’s Visionary Award.

Palo Alto Vice Mayor Tom DuBois hosts the 6 p.m. Oct. 15 introductory event of the festival, which was established by Stanford University educator and film critic Jasmina Bojic to honor the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Tickets to individual screenings are $12 general, $6 for seniors and $3 for students; passes are available for $200 general, $60 for seniors and $30 for students. To participate, visit https://unaff2020.eventive.org/welcome.

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