The tenth anniversary of 9/11 has come and gone, yet the legacy of that event persists. Over the past decade, filmmakers across the globe have tackled issues that have come about as a direct consequence of the attacks — and the United States’ response to them.
Here are twenty-eight films on such issues, including award-winning blockbusters, acclaimed indie films, and tiny new titles that aren’t yet complete. The list was compiled by Art Threat contributing editor Ezra Winton, who is also the Director of Programming for Cinema Politica. Many of film titles link to places where you can watch the film online, but we encourage you to support the filmmakers and purchase a DVD for your library.
The politics of terror, war and oil
Hijacking Catastrophe: 9/11, Fear & the Selling of American Empire — This documentary places the Bush Administration’s original justifications for war in Iraq within the larger context of a two-decade struggle by neo-conservatives to dramatically increase military spending while projecting American power and influence globally by means of force.
Aftermath: Unanswered Questions from 9/11 — Featuring nine people answering the top eleven questions regarding the attacks on the Twin Towers, this film brings together a puzzle which has been obscured by the U.S. government and the media in order to make up the perfect lie.
The Guantanamo Trap — The Guantanamo Trap tells the stories of four people whose lives have been irrevocably changed by the Guantanamo Bay Detention Centre.
Oil, Smoke & Mirrors — A sobering critique of our perceived recent history, of our present global circumstances, and of our shared future in light of imminent, under-reported and mis-represented energy production constraints.
Fahrenheit 911 — Academy Award-winning filmmaker Michael Moore’s searing examination of the Bush administration’s actions in the wake of the tragic events of 9/11
The Power of Nightmares: The Rise of the Politics of Fear — A series of three documentaries about the use of fear for political gain.
The Oil Factor: Behind the War on Terror — After assessing today’s dwindling oil reserves and skyrocketing use of oil for fuels, plastics and chemicals, this film questions the motives for the U.S. wars in the Middle-East and Central Asia where 3/4 of the world’s oil and natural gas is located.
Full Battle Rattle — A film about life inside the US Army’s Iraq simulation in California’s Mojave Desert.
Why We Fight — An unflinching look at the anatomy of the American war machine, weaving unforgettable personal stories with commentary by a who’s who of military and beltway insiders.
Distorted Mortality — The U.S. government has been a major supporter of state-supported terrorism, favouring aggression over mediation in the world court, and avoiding accountability by excluding itself from the globally accepted definition of terrorism. This hypocrisy is powerfully scrutinized in a scathing thesis presented by renowned scholar Noam Chomsky.
Never Happen Here: The Whitehorse 9/11 Story — The film recounts the terrifying stories of parents who raced to save their children as the northern city of Whitehorse, Yukon is threatened by an approaching 747 that is believed to be hijacked, on the very same day that four hijacked planes bring catastrophe to the United States.
Civil liberties, human rights and immigration
Taxi To The Dark Side — Over one hundred prisoners have died in suspicious circumstances in U.S. custody during the “war on terror”. Taxi to the Dark Side takes an in-depth look at one case: an Afghan taxi driver called Dilawar who was considered an honest and kind man by the people of his rustic village.
You Don’t Like The Truth — The story of Canadian Omar Khadr, detained at Guantánamo for almost a decade without charges.
Gitmo — A documentary showing the consequences fo choices made by western forces to create guantanamo bay detention center and the useless intelligence that leads to the kidnapping and detention of innocent people.
The Road To Guantanamo Bay — The film focuses on the Tipton Three, a trio of British Muslims who were held in Guantanamo Bay for two years until they were released without charge.
Standard Operating Procedure — Errol Morris examines the incidents of abuse and torture of suspected terrorists at the hands of U.S. forces at the Abu Ghraib prison.
Enemy Alien — A Palestinian activist’s fight for freedom draws a Japanese American filmmaker into confrontation with detention regimes of past and present.
Ghosts of Abu Ghraib — An examination of the prisoner abuse scandal involving U.S. soldiers and detainees at Iraq’s Abu Ghraib prison in the fall of 2003.
Being Osama — An intimate exploration of six men with highly diverse backgrounds, interests and personalities, united by their first names.
Threadbare — The 40 minute documentary follows the story of the “Toronto 24″–the South Asian men in Toronto wrongly suspected of being a terror cell operating inside Canada, supposedly targeting the CN tower.
The Secret Trial 5 — A new crowdfunded documentary that examines the human impact of Canada’s “war on terror”; specifically the use of security certificates, a tool that allows for indefinite detention, with no charges, and secret evidence.
The Good Son — The story of a young Egyptian refugee who is asked to translate for his father as CSIS (Canadian Security and Intelligence Services) officers question him in their home.
Focus on Iraq
Iraq in Fragments — American director James Longley spent more than two years filming in Iraq to create this stunningly photographed, poetically rendered documentary of the war-torn country as seen through the eyes of Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds.
No End In Sight — The first film of its kind to chronicle the reasons behind Iraq’s descent into guerilla war, warlord rule, criminality and anarchy, No End In Sight is a jaw-dropping, insider’s tale of wholesale incompetence, recklessness and venality.
Iraq for Sale — The story of what happens to everyday Americans when corporations go to war.
Occupation Dreamland — An unflinchingly candid portrait of a squad of American soldiers deployed in the doomed Iraq city of Falluja during the winter of 2004.
My Country, My Country — Follows the agonizing predicament and gradual descent of one man caught in the tragic contradictions of the U.S. occupation of Iraq and its project to spread democracy in the Middle East.
The conspiracy files
Loose Change 9/11: An American Coup — This film examines mysterious and infamous events that reshaped world history — from the Reichstag Fire in 1933 that catapulted Hitler to dictatorship, to the Gulf of Tonkin Incident in 1964 that led to the Vietnam War — and then takes viewers on a turbulent journey through several pivotal moments in history before delving into the most significant catastrophe in recent memory, 9/11.
Image: detail from poster for Taxi from the Dark Side.