21st Travelling Festival. Human Rights in Film: Program

WATCH DOCS is one of the largest human rights film events in the world presenting documentaries, in which commitment to individual rights is combined with film art.
Each year, the festival features over fifty world-class films. The festival in Warsaw, a travelling festival in over thirty Polish cities, and an online festival gather over 100,000 viewers combined. WATCH DOCS is the oldest documentary film festival in Warsaw - the first edition of the festival took place in 2001. Every year, after the international Warsaw based edition, WATCH DOCS organizes screenings across Poland.
Since 2003, after the international edition of the WATCH DOCS festival in December in Warsaw, together with various partners from all over Poland (NGO’s, universities, theaters and other cultural institutions), we organize the Travelling Film Festival WATCH DOCS. Human Rights in Film.



15 - 17.12. 2023


All the events of the festival will take place in Lublin at baobab, 39b Krakowskie Przedmieście Street.
Participation in the festival is free of charge.
Only adults can participate in the festival. The children's room will not be available during the festival.


15.12.2023 Friday


6 p.m.
Meeting with guests - Maciej Stuhr and Katarzyna Blazejewska - Stuhr

Maciej Stuhr is one of the most popular Polish actors. Film and theater director and screenwriter, columnist, entertainer, psychologist, university lecturer.
Katarzyna Blazejewska - Stuhr is a nutritionist, psychodietitian, lecturer at Warsaw Medical University. She educates about healthy eating in her social media profiles and blog.

Together with our guests, we want to create a space for open discussion about the experiences and challenges of welcoming refugees into our homes. We are committed to finding solutions together and sharing inspiring stories. Mr. and Mrs. Stuhr have the experience of hosting refugees from Chechnya and Ukraine in their home, and will share their stories with us in a candid conversation.

Led by: Anna Dąbrowska
Translation in PSL: Magdalena Gach

8.00 p.m.
Ghosts of Moria, 25 min, 2022 Denmark, directed by Michael Graversen, Florian Elabdi
When Europe's largest refugee camp called Moria burned down on September 9, 2020, some of its dwellers decided to stay in the scorched ruins. Ayham and Khalil are trying to survive in a place that brings to mind ruined Syria. How much money can be made from selling scrap metal scavenged from the rubble? How will the Syrian Robinsons' odyssey end? Konrad Wirkowski


16.12.2023 Saturday


4.00 p.m.
The Therapy, 80 min, 2021 Israel, directed by Zvi Landsman
LGBT people belonging to closed religious communities must face tremendous pressure from the people around them. Rejected by those closest to them, in the hope of finding any way out of their identity crisis they often seek help from pseudo-therapists offering a "cure" for homosexuality. That's what the characters of Zvi Landsman's film raised in a Jewish Orthodox community in Israel do. So-called conversion therapy presents them with a frightening choice: in order to continue to function in the community, they must renounce themselves ("suppress their unhealthy urges"). Such conversion often causes permanent psychological trauma and is simply forbidden in many places. However, it still functions in conservative societies where religious fanatics have a strong influence. Our country is an example of this. Konrad Wirkowski

5.30 p.m.
A debate about the importance of sects.

The debate about sects is controversial and complicated because it concerns an area that combines religious, psychological and social aspects. People's contemporary involvement in sects can be due to a variety of factors, which makes the topic fascinating for researchers, psychologists and social scientists. Our meeting focuses on analyzing and understanding why people choose to join these particular groups, which are often characterized by strong leadership, social isolation and specific beliefs.

The debate will be attended by:

Angelika Szelągowska-Mironiuk - psychologist, psychotherapist, sex therapist, Polish scholar, publicist. She works with individual patients, couples and families. Author of psychological books.

Jolanta Prochowicz - philosopher, philologist, founder of the Camera Femina Foundation. She conducts research and social action around women's rights, inclusive language and multiculturalism. She is a trainer and teacher of Polish language, philosophy and civic education.

Led by: Yaryna Posuniak
Translation in Polish sign language: Ewelina Lachowska

7.00 p.m.
We don't talk, 71' 2022 Netherlands, directed by Marjolein Busstra
Four young protagonists go through a therapeutic process as they try to work through the trauma of sexual abuse. Despite their anger at their abusers, they are still unable to definitively cut themselves off from the environment in which they were harmed. The film is an intimate insight into trauma therapy. We see the damage that sexual violence itself has done to the psyche of young people, but also their inability to talk about what they have experienced. We watch as they break through their inner resistance, facing an overwhelming sense of guilt and shame. Marta Lityńska


17.12.2023 Sunday


4.00 p.m.
Smell of Money, 84' 2022 USA, directed by Shawn Bannon
Welcome to North Carolina - a state whose inhabitants: people and animals, are living through the hell inflicted on them by the largest pork producer in the world. The eastern part of the state is inhabited mostly by a poor African-American community. And it is there that the Smithfield corporation decided to build (cheaply) a huge piggery. None of the locals believe in the company's slogan: "Good food. Responsibly." Everyone sees how day after day hectoliters of pig excrement are splashed around the neighborhood, and their stench, in spite of closed windows, invades homes. Polluted water and air, health problems and animal suffering make residents fight for justice. "Smell of Money" reveals the stinking secrets of industrial pig farming without forgetting about the people who have become victims of the ruthless pursuit of profit. A pursuit that takes the lives of not only animals. Zuzanna Polynko

6.00 p.m.
The pack, 52' 2022 Poland, directed by Tadeusz Chudy
As part of a special resocialization program, a group of repeat offenders with years of prison sentences behind them are training dogs from a nearby shelter. If they succeed, they will increase the chances of their dogs being adopted and having a normal life. If not - the dogs will be put down. The convicts for whom the prison has no secrets must prove themselves in a whole new competition, requiring patience, consistency and empathy. Supported by a non-conformist prison guard who has been working with drug-seeking dogs for years, they sometimes face their own demons consciously for the first time in their lives. Will they succeed in saving the animals? And how will the whole process requiring emotional engagement affect the psyche of people living in a world where emotions are not allowed? Konrad Wirkowski

7.00 p.m.
Sheltered, 73' 2020 Netherlands, directed by Saskia Gubbels
The largest animal shelter in the Netherlands. Every day here is filled with the same activities - cleaning, feeding, veterinary consultations, training and behavioral tests. The gloomy interiors contrast with the dedication of the staff and volunteers who share a common goal - to find the best possible homes for their animals: abandoned dogs, cats, rodents and birds. We see the struggles of these animals, see the close relationships they develop with their caretakers, and root for their progress. However, not every story has a happy ending. Some cases are particularly difficult, and the Dutch pet protection system is relentless. Marta Lityńska


The event is organized with the financial support of UNHCR Poland and the Danish Refugee Council.

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