"Why is the killing of a million a lesser crime than the killing of an individual?" Raphael Lemkin changed the course of history with this one question. Examining the life of the lawyer and linguist, who coined the word 'genocide', Watchers of the Sky explores one man's perseverance to convince the world that there must be legal retribution for mass atrocities, setting the stage for the Nuremberg trials and the creation of the International Criminal Court.
Weaving together the rare archive images she could find, director Edet Belzberg makes beautiful use of animation to tell Lemkin's story. She also highlights the work of four individuals continuing Lemkin's legacy including Luis Moreno Ocampo, the first Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Watchers of the Sky is a lyrical, illuminating film on the power of a single word and one man's determination.
What the audience said
'Really thoughtful - incredibly important, complimented by its tone, structure and the characters. THANK YOU! I am inspired by buy the book it was based on.'
'Moving, important and distressing. Films like these really need to reach a wider audience to promote positive change in the world.'
'Powerful, thought provoking, eye opening.'
'Very interesting - would like to use as a teaching aid.'
'It was highly educational and insightful. Presented in a way that's very difficult not to remember. Loved it.'
'I thought it was incredibly interesting and informative. More of the same.
It was very well done and moving. There are some movies about war / genocide etc that are not done tastefully & glorify war, there are others that don't always explain how it could have been prevented. This film was very tasteful and informative. Thank you.'
'The film was incredibly powerful and I think it is extremely important to have viewing opportunities for such works, so thanks DocHouse for facilitating that. However the film did not do a sufficient job of explaining the opposition that the ICC was facing, but that is a frequent issue in documentary.'
'Totally eye-opening. Probably the most important documentary I have ever seen.'
Where can I see it again?
Visit the film's website for future screenings: HERE
How can I get involved?
If you are interested in reading more about the issues raised in the film, or in becoming involved, you can visit the websites below:
Watchers of the Sky (official website)
Contact the filmmakers
Sundance Film Festival: US Documentary Special Jury Award – Use of Animation
Sundance Film Festival: US Documentary – Best Editing