Thursday, June 4, 7:30 pm
The Brooks and Indie Memphis partner to screen this intense and emotional debut feature film from Turner Prize-winning visual artist Steve McQueen. Winner of the coveted Camera D’Or at the 2008 Cannes Film Festival, Hunger tells the history of the Irish Republican Army and their fight to reclaim rights from their government.
In 1971, Irish officials used the Special Powers Act to initiate a raid on Republican areas to arrest members of the IRA, without trial, to deal with escalating civil violence in Northern Ireland. The prisoners were given Special Category Status for crimes associated with civil violence, but the new labour secretary phased SCS out, therefore removing rights from anyone arrested after a certain date.
Those discluded from the SCS were transferred to the new “H-blocks” of the Maze Prison where prisoners began protests to argue that they shouldn’t be treated as common criminals. The protests began with refusal to wear uniforms or bathe, an experience visualized in the film by prisoners spreading their increments and pouring their urine on the ground. When their demands were not met, the protest then led to the Hunger Strikes that lasted from 1980-81, and eventually took the life of IRA leader Bobby Sands and 10 others. His death, however, led to an increase in IRA memberships and the right for imprisoned peoples to wear their own clothes. Not until 1988 were the remaining prisoners allowed to retain their status.
Hunger while at times disturbing and violent, unapologetically displays the universal struggle between politics and the people through one man’s experience.
“Put Hunger on your must-see list…It’s a brilliant work of power, maturity and vision that should not be missed.”–Rex Reed, New York Observer
“Steve McQueen’s Hunger about the death of Bobby Sands in the Maze prison was the most controversial film on la Croisette from the moment the programme was announced.”-Kaleem Aftab, The Independent
Call 901-544-6225 or click here to make reservations.