Percolator Films and Evanston’s Jewish Reconstructionist Synagogue (JRC) will present the documentary “Beneath the Blindfold” on Jan. 19 at 7 p.m. at JRC, 303 Dodge Ave. A discussion with Rabbi Brant Rosen and the film’s co-directors Kathy Berger and Ines Sommer will follow.
“Beneath the Blindfold” follows four torture survivors from different parts of the world, now among the more than 500,000 survivors who live in the U.S.: Blama Massaquoi, who was a child soldier in Liberia; Matilde de la Sierra, a physician from Guatemala now living in Chicago; Hector Aristizabal, a theater artist and therapist from Colombia; and Don Vance, a U.S. Navy veteran and security contractor in Iraq who was placed in the detention system for enemy combatants in retaliation for whistle-blowing.
“Beneath the Blindfold” follows these survivors as they take the daunting steps of building new lives, careers and relationships, and become public advocates for an end to torture.
With the new film “Zero Dark Thirty,” public discussions about “enhanced interrogation” have reopened. The voices of torture survivors are rarely included in these public discussions, but without them, torture remains abstract and misunderstood, a practice that happens to people we neither know nor care about.
“Beneath the Blindfold” is the first documentary to look at the lifelong impact this horrific experience has on survivors, adding an important perspective to any debate about torture.
Admission is $10 at the door. Advance tickets are available at http://jrcblindfold.eventbrite.com/#. More information is available by calling 847-371-2804 or 847-328-7678.