Human Stories

HAITI, LIFE AT ALL COSTS [52’]

The Kangaroo method

On January 12, 2010, a brutal earthquake killed more than 200,000 people in Haiti.

Eight years later, the situation in the country is still chaotic, particularly in maternity wards. The one at the public hospital in Port au Prince is still a makeshift, an unsuitable premise without running water. Premature babies, the most fragile, have very little chance of survival.

A few kilometres away, however, the Saint Damien maternity ward is saving most of these little lives. Subsidized by an Italian NGO, equipped with state-of-the-art neonatal equipment, it relies on a program that has been proven in other poor countries: the Kangaroo method.

IRAN, THE LAST GREAT NOMADS [52’]

An exhausting and spectacular transhumance

In central Iran, the mountains of Zagros are the domain of the Bakhtiaris, one of the last great nomads.

They are proud shepherds who still practice a long, exhausting and spectacular transhumance. They remain attached to centuries of traditions as well as a way of life dating back from ancient Persia.

These majestic valleys framed by mountains and glaciers present an unexpected image of Iran.

KOREAN BROKEN FAMILIES [52’]

The heartbraking reunion

The diplomatic relations between North Korea and South Korea are warming up but there is still a deep wound going back to the time of the Cold War: the separation of refugees’ families.

Lee Geumsum was a young mother when she had to flee the Korean War in 1951. She wandered several hundreds of kilometres hunted by famine and diseases when, one morning, she had to stop to feed her daughter who was only a few months old, losing sight of her 4-year-old son. She never saw him again.

Thanks to the reunion of families organised by the two countries, this 91-year-old lady will see again a son she had lost 68 years ago.

POLYNESIA, THE QUEST FOR ORIGINS [52’]

The ancestry of the people of Tahiti

Where do the people from French Polynesia come from? South America, as the Kon-Tiki tried to prove? Alaska? South-East Asia?

This mystery is compounded by another more recent one. How did the numerous Chinese come to play a key role in the island demography?

Through Teiva's quest, a young Polynesian dancer, and Kyle's, a chinese boy in high school, this film is a fascinating ethnological study with a surprising result: even though everything seems to set them apart, they are actually cousins since their ancestors came at different times from... China !

REBIBBIA PRISON: PRISONERS ON STAGE [52’]

Acting criminals

Rebibbia, Italy's largest high-security prison, houses convicts with long jail terms.

Mafia members, criminals, traffickers, most of them never entered a theatre. However, a performance hall, quite unusual in a prison facility, welcomes them three times a week to introduce them to this art.

A woman, Laura Andreini Salerno, convinced them to leave their cells for a unique experience: to put together a play that they will perform in a few months in front of their fellow inmates and wardens.

SACRED PILGRIMAGE IN NEPAL [52’]

In Nepal, ancestral customs are the highlights of numerous religious festivals that attract huge crowds. They take place in magnificent temples, where sadhus, monks who have renounced all material ties, officiate.

In this film, we follow Shivadas who treks along dizzyingly steep trails in the Langtang mountains for a spectacular pilgrimage. His destination is the lake of Gosaikunda, at an altitude of 4380m, to honor the god Shiva.

THE TAIGA ERMIT [52’]

Between 2 worlds

Deep in the Indian Cree territory, in the Canadian taiga, a man has chosen to live in isolation in the heart of nature and away from the modern world.

This film follows him in his daily life and in his spiritual journey that leads him to reflect on the evolution of Western societies and their impact on the environment.

An authentic film of striking beauty.

24X24 [13x26’]

Women of courage

This series highlights a day in the life of Filipino women who have made their marks in their chosen fields.

It also broach into their families, relationships, daily struggles, inspiration and experiences that have brought them where they are today.

A WOMAN'S WORLD [5x85’]

Iconic female figures in different cultures

How is the day of a businesswoman in Tunisia? What is the life of a mother in India like? And that of a Brazilian pensioner?

This series presents women with very different profiles. Alongside our host Chékéba Hachémi, we meander the neighborhoods of Delhi, explore the magnificent landscapes of Tunisia, tread the sand of the beaches of Rio, to meet these women of the world who open their doors.

ALMOST FAMOUS [4x52’]

I want to break free

Within a social and cultural landscape considered to be largely conservative, some people are pushing the boundaries of what is generally considered acceptable and appropriate in polite Asian society.

These Asians are speaking their minds in unlikely or alternative forms of expression with the aim of breaking the codes and loosening up powerful social mores.

Now they are starting to get attention.

BATACLAN GENERATION: HOW DO THEY FACE UP THE TERROR? [20’]

Hurt but resourceful

After the attacks of November 13, 2015, that killed 129, the shockwave spread throughout the whole Paris region.

This film is an encounter with young people, hurt but resourceful, who have to learn to live with the threat of terrorism.

BLOODSHED ON THE RIVIERA, THE TERROR ATTACK IN NICE [54’]

86 dead and 458 wounded

On July 14, 2016, at 10pm, fireworks illuminate the city of Nice. Tens of thousands of onlookers came to watch the festivities on the Promenade des Anglais. The show is breathtaking, the atmosphere friendly. But it will not last.

A truck rams through the crowd, spreading terror and chaos. The attack leaves 86 dead and 458 wounded. What really happened?

Four years later, through the accounts of direct witnesses and families of victims and thanks to a thorough investigation, this film looks back at the circumstances of the tragedy.

BORN POLYNESIANS [52’]

The essence of the myth on Tahiti

“Vahine” means woman in Polynesian. But the word, associated to a myth forged by foreigners, has become almost embarrassing to use in Tahiti. Even though Polynesian women are indeed beautiful, and welcoming, they are more into substance than looks.

This film will have you meet some of these women: dancer, writer, herbalist or politician. All of them play a key role in the smooth running of the Polynesian society and especially the preservation of its traditions and the integrity of its language and cultural identity.

BORN POLYNESIANS demonstrates that “vahines” are much more than a beautiful cliché.

BREATHE: YOGA SAVED MY LIFE [52’]

A path to healing

After a risky back surgery, a man in his 40’s ended up paralysed. He was told that he will never be able to walk again. After years of suffering, he found a path to healing in practising yoga.

This inner journey not only brings him back in touch with himself, but also opens him to different people. In the farthest reaches of the world, he meets fascinating human beings that have also been saved thanks to yoga.

CHAMPIONS [5x52’]

Reproducing the exploits of yesteryear

5 world class women athletes, in 5 different sports, have set themselves a major challenge that they will try to achieve at all costs.

DEATH AND THE SOLDIER [52’]

The ultimate sacrifice

What is death to a soldier? Why is he willing to sacrifice his life? How can one prepare to die or to kill? How do newly enlisted men experience their first battles?

This film is not about the merits of that profession or a military or anti-militarist manifesto. It’s an attempt to penetrate the psyche of soldiers confronted with the idea of death. Their own, that of their comrades as well as their foes.

DESIGN + STORY [6x26’]

The fashion and art world’s most anticipated and recognized artists

DESIGN + STORY thoughtfully narrates the romantic, magical and colorful journeys of artists.

Each episode introduces 2 artists, side-by-side, in a collaborative narrative on their beginnings, inspiration, craft and signature style that brought them to fame.

EXTRAORDINARY ASIAN WOMEN [3x52’]

The willpower of a few women can change the lives of many

This series showcases the amazing achievements of those Asian women who are quietly changing and moulding lives around them, such as Sangduen Lek who risked her life to save the many abused elephants in Thailand.

Witness their dedication, passion and determination as they battle against all odds and challenges to change the world.

EXTRAORDINARY ASIANS [10x52’]

The willpower of a few can change the lives of many

This series showcases the amazing achievements of ordinary people who are quietly changing and moulding the world around them.

Each episode features one such extraordinary person: a Nepali eye surgeon whose low cost operations enabled thousands to regain their sights; a woman who is risking her life to save the many abused elephants in Thailand and a Taiwanese school principal who led an aboriginal choir to international fame.

Dedication, passion and determination against all odds can change the world.

FAREWELL MY TEACHER [80’]

The universal domain of childhood

In a small village, Jean-Michel Burel, a school teacher in a multi-level class, is beginning his last school year before retirement.

He teaches tolerance and wisdom as well as spelling and mathematics. He conducts his program with determination. He strives to give his students confidence and encourages them to aim higher.

Through the eyes of a former pupil, now a filmmaker, a timeless school takes shape where rigor is combined with good humour, where respect is emphasized. A school that belongs to everyone and is the universal domain of childhood.

GRAB AND RUN [52’]

Abducted into marriage

Since Kyrgyzstan gained its independence in 1991, there has been a revival of the ancient practice of Ala-Kachuu, which translates roughly as "grab and run".

More than half Kyrgyz women get married after being kidnapped by the men who become their husbands. Some escape after having endured violent ordeals, but most yield to tradition and fear of scandal. Although the practice is said to have its root in nomadic customs, it remains at odds with modern Kyrgyzstan.

Even if Ala-Kachuu has been outlawed during the Soviet era and is still illegal nowadays, the law is rarely enforced.

Also available as a 90'

INSTANT BADASS [52’]

From the street to the cage

Away from the postcard image of Bangkok exists a world of violence and social antagonism.

Jakkrapong created the first Street Fight club in the city, providing a space for anyone to come and experience fighting. Operating on the fringe of society, and considered by most to be thugs, these young men meet to confront each other. Not for money or glory, but just to feel alive.

These are men that ultimately want to build, in their own way, a social bond within a hostile society.

JOBLESS IN FRANCE, HOOKERS IN BELGIUM [31’]

Necessity knows no laws

An active sex ring exists between France and Belgium.

In Flanders, just 15 minutes from Lille, 70% of the prostitutes are French. To make ends meet, they work in brothels in Belgium. They are unemployed saleswomen, part-time nurses, even graduates.

They entered this profession as a consequence to the economic crisis, a temporary solution...

KAMLAHARI, THE STOLEN CHILDHOOD OF NEPAL [52’]

Sold as modern day slaves by their own families

In the Teraï region of Nepal, many young girls confront a harrowing destiny: they are sold off as modern day slaves by their own families.

These girls, called "Kamlahari", are deprived of their childhood, kindred and education and doomed by ancient traditions to be exploited as cheap labor in rich households.

Urmila Chaudari has made it her mission to raise awareness on this plight and give these girls, some as young as 5, access to school and security.

LADY CHEETAH [52’]

A love story

In 1979, Laurie Marker’s passion for cheetahs led her to leave her family, friends and home (the USA) for Namibia in order to save the species.

The splendid feline is a hunting machine, the fastest of all land predators, but also a desired trophy for poachers. To protect them she came up with an unusual solution: reintroduce another endangered species, the Anatolian shepherd, the only dog capable of thwarting cheetahs away.

Today, Laurie is regarded as the leading world expert on this animal.

LIFE ABOARD AN AIRCRAFT CARRIER [56’]

The largest ship in the French Navy

The aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle is the largest ship in the French Navy.

Longer than 2 football fields, as high as a 20 floors building, it is a real floating city with 2,000 inhabitants. It includes a hospital, a post office and a self-service where 4,000 meals are served each day.

We share the out of the ordinary life aboard this ship of sailors like no others.

LIFE ON A VOLCANO [52’]

Villages on the lava path

For half a million years, the Piton de la Fournaise has been the pulsating heart of the island of La Reunion. A volcano both admired and feared by the people who have come to understand it by living by its side, litterally. Indeed, towns and villages have sprung up on its slopes, right where the lava sometimes makes its way to the sea.

This film tells the daily life of the men and women who have chosen to live around the Piton de la Fournaise, one of the most active volcanoes in the world.

MAMA HYENA [52’]

Lessons from a despised animal

Hyenas have been given an unfairly negative reputation in folklore and popular media because of their ungraceful, even grotesque physical features.

Hyenas are truly a curiosity of nature. They are intelligent creatures that follow a sophisticated and ruthless social system. Depending on its rank, each individual finds itself in a position of power or obedience for its whole life. Hunted down by farmers, hyenas are nonetheless crucial in clearing up the savannah of its carcasses which are carriers of lethal bacteria. Their immune system is unparalleled and a bonanza for medical research.

MAMA HYENA is a tribute to this captivating animal.

MAMADOU, THE MAGIC HEALER [52’]

The chiropractor with thousands of patients

Born in a small African village, Mamadou N'Diaye settled in the little town of Roubaix, in the North of France, in the 1930’s where he became a local figure.

Mamadou started as a boxer and then became a famous chiropractor. In his office in a working-class neighbourhood, he treated thousands of patients, including many Belgians who did not hesitate to cross the border to be treated.

He left behind 2 daughters whom he did not acknowledged and who are now trying to understand their own history through the testimonies of those who knew him.

MIGRANTS [52’]

From misery to disenchantment

Five young Afghans decide to take a shot at a better life and migrate to Europe, more specifically Paris their dream destination. Then begins a two-year, 12,000 kms, journey, across 6 borders and full of first times: the ocean, girls in mini-skirts, bars, skyscrapers. What they only saw on TV is suddenly becoming real.

It will be 2 years of hope and misery, successes and failures but always in clandestinity. In the end, only two of them reach Europe while the others are sent back to their Afghan fate. However, for all begins a time of disenchantment.

This striking film puts faces on the human tragedy currently submerging Europe.

MY CULTURAL REVOLUTION [52’]

Mao's grinder

“I was barely 10 when I was thrown into this madness. The turmoil swallowed me. When it was over, I was a man. A pretty unusual teenage crisis!”. Xu Xing, a Chinese writer, revisits his early years which were ravaged by the Cultural Revolution. It cost him his illusions, his family and his first love who betrayed him.

Welcome back to a world where love was prohibited, culture and education denied and all forms of traditions wrecked. For the first time, Chinese people testify about this unconscionable lunacy initiated by Mao Zedong which caused the death of over a million people.

MY CULTURAL REVOLUTION is an agonizing tribute to all the humble and anonymous victims of a modern history tragedy.

NOSTALGIC SHOPS [4x52’]

Driven by passion

They are bookseller, hairdresser, haberdasher, grocer...

This series paints the portrait of merchants who, against all odds, carry on their activities despite the daily difficulties and the competition from the Internet and supermarkets.

We travel all over France to meet the men and women who keep these nostalgic small businesses alive in a rapidly changing world, driven by their passion and love of their profession.

Also available as 12x13mns

OUT [64’]

The moment their world teetered

Through a montage of compelling videos posted on the Internet by young gays, bis, lesbians or transsexuals, this film makes us experience from within the groundbreaking moment of their coming out – after which their intimate and social life shall be forever changed.

RITOMA [57’]

Where Basketball meets Tibet

The Tibetan Plateau is one the world's highest and largest and home to the village Ritoma which inhabitants struggle to keep their nomadic culture alive while embracing modern world, notably in the form of their new found passion: basketball.

Helped by an American coach, the villagers want to build the best team around and decide to organize a tournament.

RITOMA is a rich and moving human story of former nomads and monks playing basketball on a high altitude windswept outdoor ground. These colorful characters uncover another Tibetan reality at the crossroads of tradition and modernity.

SEARCH FOR MADE IN JAPAN [12x30’]

An eye for design and beauty

Japan is often associated with notion of excellence, durability, extreme attention to details, craftmanship and tradition. Every handcrafted product or design combines love and beauty like the famous Kyoto’s silk, Sabae eye-wear, samurai armor or even mundane frying pans.

SEARCHING FOR MULLAH OMAR [59’]

Who really was the iconic leader of the talibans?

Mullah Omar, the Afghan Taliban leader, is one of the most controversial and enigmatic men on the planet. Even after years of foreign military presence, we still know absolutely nothing about him.

Is he a dreadful Islamist? Has he been branded evil to justify a military intervention in Afghanistan? Or was he a village idiot overwhelmed by events?

Three female journalists have crisscrossed Afghanistan dining with militiamen, going across innumerable checkpoints or having a good laugh with Talibans trying to uncover the man behind the myth.

SURVIVING 9/11 [52’]

Trapped in the Towers

On the morning of September 11, 2001, Colin, John, and Bruno return to their offices in the North Tower while Brian does the same in the South Tower. Jay has just finished his night shift and leaves his fire station 5 minutes away from the World Trade Center.

Suddenly, the twin towers become the target of a ghastly attack.

For the first time, the tragedy of September 11 is told through 5 survivors, 5 heroes, trapped on different floors in the hell that has become the World Trade Center towers.

This is the story of their struggle for life.

SURVIVING THE PARIS ATTACKS [52’]

The Bataclan venue from the inside

Several years have passed since the attacks of November 13, 2015, when terrorists struck in the heart of Paris. Among the places targeted, the most emblematic was the Bataclan concert hall.

We met several witnesses who were present at the Eagles of Death Metal concert that evening, and who experienced this attack from the inside.

Minute after minute, they recount how they managed to escape from hell: the choices they faced, the encounters they made, the hazards they confronted.

TASHI DELEK [52’]

A teenager conflict between spiritualism and materialism

Tashi is like any teenager, he loves to play football, have fun with his friends and listen to pop music. But, unlike other teenagers, he is also a monk studying at the Pema Tsal Sakya Buddhist Monastery in the Himalayas.

Soon, Tashi will face the most important decision in his life, whether to become a full time monk or leave the monastery and try his luck at college or in business.

This is the story of a conflict between spiritualism and materialism and the struggle of the small kingdom of Mustang to keep its identity.

THE AMBASSADORS OF HOPE [11x52’]

One cause, one celebrity

These exceptional women use their fame to promote and serve causes that are close to their hearts, ready to shake up their image out of conviction and to serve an ideal.

For these ambassadors, becoming a spokesperson for the voiceless is a choice, and sharing their experiences a duty.

Each episode presents an association that provides concrete answers to a growing number of challenges.

THE INTOUCHABLES’ HOLIDAYS [30’]

Stronger than the handicap

They take risks and face extreme situations. They climb mountains and cross oceans. Yet, they are disabled.

Paul and Henri set out to descend the rocky inlets near Marseilles, France, thanks to all-terrain wheelchairs and volunteers who accompany them. They share everything from pain to laughters. Hervé, set out to sea with 3 friends, also disabled. They took part in a regatta against teams of valid.

What are people with disabilities looking for when confronting situations that can be dangerous? Why do able-bodied people choose to spend their holidays with those who cannot walk or express themselves?

THE PERFECT BODY CLINIC [90’]

A temple to beauty

Five floors. 2,500 square meters. A hundred employees. The Champs Elysées Clinic is one of the largest plastic surgery institution in Europe.

Patients benefit from 30 luxurious rooms with an attentive staff comprising physiotherapists, hairdressers and manicures. It has been attracting a high-end French and international clientele for 60 years.

Always at the forefront of innovation, it offers solutions to get rid of one’s blemishes: slimming, rejuvenation, beard grafting, implant surgery. Everything is possible in order to look like the world’s biggest stars.

THE PRICE OF PROTEST [52’]

The Colin Kaepernick story

Imagine two of the most emblematic American values colliding: freedom of speech and patriotism.

Football icon Colin Kaepernick epitomized that clash when, in 2016, a simple gesture turned him into the most polarizing athlete of our times. While the crowd was standing up for the national anthem at an NFL football game, he instead took a knee. It became the kickoff for a serious political crisis in the US and started a movement (#TakeAKnee) that made him world famous. To some, Colin is a hero, to others a traitor, but still many followed his lead by taking a knee or protesting in the streets.

Colin Kaepernick may have sacrificed his career but his standing against social injustice will go down in history.

TOURING KIDS [75’]

An epic journey of tolerance

24 kids aged 6 to 16 and from a cosmopolitan and rough neighborhood, are part of a theater company coached by professionals.

With their show, Lord Stanley's Gypsy, they toured all over France to finally arrive in Slovakia where they meet the real Gypsy people.

Their humor, rage, talent and raw energy take us on an epic journey of tolerance.

UNIQUE HOMES [12x26’]

A tour of Japanese creative architecture

UNIQUE HOMES introduces one-of-a-kind houses in Japan built or designed by families or individuals living in it.

The houses feature exclusive design and functions while still matching unique environment and location constraints.

This is a tour of Japanese creative architecture.

WOMEN AND ANIMAL [3x52’]

Lives of passion

These 3 films features unique women who dedicate their lives to the study and protection of wildlife in Africa. These scientists spent a lifetime on the field to fulfill their passion for species such as hyenas in Kenya, cheetahs in Namibia or chimpanzees in Congo.

They help us understand their fascination for these animals.