LFFF STAYING TOGETHER: Women Against Systemic Violence12A

LFFF STAYING TOGETHER: Women Against Systemic Violence

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Women often find themselves forced to navigate a patriarchal system that is not built for them or that is, in fact, built against them. Nowhere is this more obvious than in the judicial system when it comes to issues of custody.


Rachel Meyrick, UK, 2017

It wasn’t until her husband attacked her in public that 86 year old Charlotta Harrison found the

strength to leave. She is one of the lucky ones: every day, three women in the US are murdered

by a male partner and 5 million children witness or are subject to domestic violence.

But for those who escape domestic violence, the story does not end. In the US, abusive fathers

are seeking custody of their children in increasing numbers. And frighteningly – they are winning

in the majority of cases. Rachel Meyrick’s directorial debut explores a terrifying trend occurring

in courts all over America; abusers using the family court system to gain custody and continue

the abuse, putting children in extreme danger and rendering their mothers helpless to protect


In this bold and provocative film, mothers, lawyers, and domestic violence experts share intimate

personal stories, hard-hitting facts and frank discussions about what is wrong with the system

and how to fix it. The indomitable main character, 86 year old Charlotta, stayed in her 62 year

marriage in order to protect her son but you will also meet women and children who have been

separated, silenced, and pushed to extreme solutions in order to escape. Hear their stories and

what they’re doing to fight back.

WHAT DOESN’T KILL ME exposes a national travesty compared by some to the Catholic

Church scandal but also mirrors what is happening in UK courts. In this explosive era of the

#TimesUp and #MeToo movement this film illustrates to perfection gender discrimination in our

court systems in which children and mothers are being actively separated from their protective



Fateme Ahmadi, UK, 2017

To keep her job and home in London, an immigrant single mother has to hide her daughter from her boss and landlord.

Bitter Sea is a short film by writer-director Fateme Ahmadi (Berlinale Talent 2017) and produced by Emma Parsons (Touching The Void, Captive), starring ADA Condeescu (If I Want to Whistle, I Whistle, Loverboy, EU Shooting Star 2013).

Bitter Sea was selected by Film London as part of their competitive London Calling Plus Scheme out of more than 100 projects. It was commissioned by Film London and awarded production funding in association with the BFI Net.Work and Creative Skillset.