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Lens Politica festival in Helsinki
by The Ovi Team
2008-11-19 09:11:01
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Lens Politica challenges to debate

Lens Politica, the festival of political film and art is organised for the third time in Helsinki in November 19th – 23rd, 2008.

In addition to the films there will be exhibitions, panel discussions, lectures and clubs in the festival programme. The events will be visited by several film directors, artists and media researchers from the USA, Cuba, Russia and Venezuela among others. This year for example the Palestinians position in Israel, the situation in modern Venezuela and an artist’s freedom of expression in Russia are under careful examination. The festival spreads around to the culture complex Andorra & Dubrovnik and the galleries of the Finnish Academy of Fine Arts.

The programme and the guests

The opening show and seminar will be held at Kiasma theatre on Wednesday November 19th at 6 pm. The opening film will be the documentary What Would Jesus Buy? and as guests the director of the film Rob VanAlkemade and the main characters Reverend Billy and Savitri D.

What Would Jesus Buy? is a comedic documentary directed by VanAlkemade and produced by Morgan Spurlock. The main character is Bill Talen, alias Reverend Billy, who is a Dutch-American performance artist, actor, producer and political activist. The film follows the journey of Billy and his choir of Stop Shopping all around America and their mission to save the country from the firm grip of consumerism.

The performance of Billy and the choir might be humoristic but it is full of content in time when the public space constantly diminishes while the commercial space expands. Citizenship is changing into consumership and people build up their identities more and more by consuming. Reverend and his followers are incredibly committed to their cause and ready to make a difference. The congregation travels thousands of kilometres around America every year to fight the fanatic consuming habits of the Americans.

The American society is scrutinized also through the energetic documentary Full Battle Rattle (2007) by Tony Gerber and Jesse Moss. The film tells about the training in an American war simulation village, Medina Wasl. The American soldiers practise for the war in Iraq in very surreal surroundings built in the middle of California.


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