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“Virtual War” Documentary Pre-Screening

Submitted by on Thursday, 8 March 2012.    1,017 views No Comment
“Virtual War” Documentary Pre-Screening

On March 8th, there is a chance to see Pekka Niskanen‘s new documentary “Virtual War” which is about Chechen refugees and filmed partly in online virtual reality “Second Life”.

In the film Chechen refugees living in different corners of the world try to build a virtual Chechnya in “Second Life”. During the process conflicting desires will inevitably collide with each other and reality. The film tells also a story about Chechens from Istanbul seeking to enter Finland and their everyday life in a refugee center located on the ground floor of a mosque.

The main characters are Hazman and her family, refugees ended up in Finland and a Finnish-Swedish activist Mikael Storsjö who has helped the family. Mikael Storsjö became a public figure after offering server space for Kavkaz Center, an Islamic Caucasus resistance’s website. Kavkaz Center had time to be only one day on Mikael’s company’s server before Finnish Security Police contacted Mikael by Ministry of the Interior’s request. Finally, Storsjö had to move the server to Stockholm under heavy pressure.

The film shows how Mikael’s actions for supporting the Chechen resistance have run into a hard criticism. Criticisms have been voiced above all by Dr. Johan Bäckman and Pastor Juha Molari. Bäckman has been interviewed often by Russian Russia Today channel, which is considered as a representative of Putin’s and the Kremlin’s views.

In the virtual war the political media battle is fierce and passionate. Virtual reality is real and war is not just virtual.

Director of the film, Pekka Niskanen is a media artist and filmmaker, whose works have been displayed around the world. Since the beginning as an artist in the 90′s Niskanen has used movies and especially video as his medium. Niskanen has also organized exhibitions for Finnish museums and art associations and served as a lecturer in University of Art and Design Helsinki, Academy of Fine Arts and the Tampere University of Applied Sciences.

The pre-screening of Pekka Niskanen’s “VIRTUAL WAR” (English subtitles, 58min) will be held at at 15:30 at Cinema Maxim 1 (Kluuvikatu 1), Helsinki, Finland. The entry is free.

The film has English subtitles and will be presented also in 12.03.2012 in YLE TV1′s Documentary Project. Virtual War is produced by Illume Oy.

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