Director of Photography

Director of Photography: Sean O'Sullivan

Ireland-awaiting forgivenessViewer’s Choice Award Prix Farel Festival in Neuchatel 2006

On the ground, the situation is still very tense. The walls, built throughout Belfast to separate the Catholic areas from the Protestant ones, are still in place. Protestant marches still dissolve into pitched battles when passing through certain sensitive Catholic streets. On both sides, the communities are held hostage by the extremists and the paramilitaries. Some political leaders in power undermine justice, play at being gang leaders and organise the demonstrations. They grow wealthy from the trafficking and peace money that they hijack. They don’t want reconciliation as they stand to lose their power. The army and police force, lip>ving alienated in their bunkers and armoured vehicles, are prevented from getting to the real authors of crimes.

In the midst of all this, reconciliation is still taking place. Former prisoners and activist form networks connecting people from both sides whose role is to avoid violence and misunderstandings. Protestant ministers and Catholic priests are talking to each other. Mixed marriages are on the rise, and more and more integrated schools and shared institutions are being opened. Yet, will it be enough to reverse the rise in extremism?

Catholic and Protestant ex paramilitaries reach out across the sectarian divide. Belfast, Northern Ireland.
French Connection Films and KTO France and SAT 2000 Italy

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Ireland: Awaiting Foregiveness