Film

All films are shown in the AV Room of the National Library, and are free of charge

Border Crossings is a timely series of events running through the entire festival programme, asking how literature and the arts break through the barriers that separate nations and cultures. The 2019 programme includes two series of films examining cultural and political boundaries, and those who seek to cross them.

Arena presents
Co-produced by Speaking Volumes and Lucy Hannah, as part of the Your Local Arena series. In partnership with the British Council

The BBC’s Arena documentary series, launched in 1975, is one of the world’s most acclaimed TV film series focused on the arts. This selection of five films from the Arena archives (1975–2011) highlights documentaries that cover writers and other cultural figures who contributed to breaking cultural barriers in their lives and work.

European border crossings
Ranging from the early 20thC to the present, these films make connections to classic European literary authors as they consider issues ranging from migration to the refugee crisis. In partnership with the Delegation of the European Union to Trinidad and Tobago

Day 1
01 May 2019

Roma

Roma (2018) A vivid, emotional portrait of a domestic worker’s journey set against domestic and political turmoil in 1970s Mexico. Cleo is a domestic worker who helps Antonio and Sofía...
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Day 2
02 May 2019

Arena presents: My Name Is Celia Cruz (1988)

Meet the late, great queen of Cuban music in this fascinating documentary from director Anthony Wall. Co-produced by Speaking Volumes and Lucy Hannah, as part of the Your Local Arena...
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Anthony Wall

Arena presents: Gilberto Gil: Back to Bahia (1990)

The life and times of Brazil’s most popular musical icon, in a documentary directed by Francis Hanly and Tim May. Co-produced by Speaking Volumes and Lucy Hannah, as part of...
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Miscellaneous Authors
Day 3
03 May 2019

Promise at Dawn (La promesse de l’aube) (2017)

From his childhood in Poland to his adolescence in Nice, to his years as a student in Paris and his tough training as a pilot during World War II, this...
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Miscellaneous Authors

Sun, Sea, and Science (2018)

The expertise of T&T’s scientists is a major untapped resource, argues this incise documentary, profiling microbiologist Dr Adesh Ramsubhag, computer scientist Professor Patrick Hosein, and medical researcher Professor Paul Teelucksingh....
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Raymond Ramcharitar

Arena presents: The Strange Luck of V.S. Naipaul (2008)

This honest, insightful documentary on T&T’s late Nobel laureate profiles the man behind the mask of literary genius. Directed by Adam Low. Co-produced by Speaking Volumes and Lucy Hannah, as...
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Miscellaneous Authors
Day 4
04 May 2019

One-on-one with Anthony Wall

The pioneering UK director talks to Lucy Hannah about the celebrated Arena documentary series and his life in film. In partnership with the British Council Bookmark
Anthony Wall
Lucy Hannah

Arena presents: C.L.R. James’s First Eleven (1986)

T&T’s great writer, political philosopher, and cricket enthusiast picks his all-time ultimate cricket team, in this short documentary directed by Charlie Pattinson. Co-produced by Speaking Volumes and Lucy Hannah, as...
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Miscellaneous Authors

Arena presents: Brixton to Barbados (1981)

Pioneering dub poet Linton Kwesi Johnson leaves his home in London and travels to Barbados to experience Carifesta 1981. Directed by Anthony Wall. Co-produced by Speaking Volumes and Lucy Hannah,...
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Miscellaneous Authors

Stefan Zweig: Farewell to Europe (2016)

This acclaimed drama charts the years of exile in the life of famous Jewish Austrian writer Stefan Zweig, his inner struggle for the “right attitude” toward the events in war-torn...
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Miscellaneous Authors

The Other Side of Hope (2017)

A poker-playing restaurateur and former traveling salesman befriends a group of refugees newly arrived to Finland.  Directed by Aki Kaurismäki. In partnership with the Delegation of the European Union to...
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Day 5
05 May 2019

Brown Girl Begins (2017)

It’s 2049 on a forsaken island off the coast of Toronto, where the survival of the islanders depends on young Ti-Jeanne to risk death by a spirit so she can...
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Nalo Hopkinson