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Hélène Magny’s documentary Unspoken Tears streaming online at nfb.ca starting today


October 5, 2022 – Montreal – National Film Board of Canada (NFB)

The feature-length documentary Unspoken Tears, directed by Hélène Magny and produced by the NFB, will be available to stream free of charge at nfb.ca as of today. At a time when it’s vital to raise awareness in Western societies of migration-related issues and children’s rights, this powerful documentary explores the psychological scars of war, highlighting the importance of understanding in successfully integrating refugee children into Quebec’s schools. A tribute to the admirable resilience and survival strategies of these “small adults,” whose spirit the bombs and camps have not completely crushed.

Unspoken Tears (Trauma Through Words)
2022, 75 min
Produced by Nathalie Cloutier for the NFB’s Quebec, Canadian Francophonie and Acadian Documentary Studio
Press kit: mediaspace.nfb.ca/epk/unspoken-tears

  • Despite their young age, some Quebec schoolchildren have already experienced unspeakable horrors. Like their classmates, they’re learning to read and write, but, as refugees who’ve fled war and violence in their homelands, they must also readjust to normal life. How can these children find meaning again after their very existence was once on hold? How can they integrate into school life given their individual struggles?
  • Garine Papazian-Zohrabian, a psychologist specializing in conflict-related trauma, carries the memory of the Armenian genocide and the Lebanese Civil War, which she experienced for 15 years. Today, she trains Quebec schoolteachers to address the psychosocial issues of refugees arriving in their classrooms.
  • The feature-length doc screened at the One World International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival in Prague, the DOC-Cévennes festival in France and the Rendez-vous Québec Cinéma.

About the filmmaker

Former journalist Hélène Magny has been making documentaries for 20 years. Her work has covered topics as wide-ranging as resistance to the Burmese dictatorship, mental illness at the Institut national de psychiatrie légale Philippe-Pinel, migration issues, the impact of journalism on democratization, and the fairy-tale story of a child living on the streets of Kinshasa who becomes a film star. Her projects all have one thing in common—an unflinching gaze. Unspoken Tears is her ninth film and her first collaboration with the NFB.

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French version here | Version française ici.

Media Relations

  • About the NFB

    Founded in 1939, the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) is a one-of-a-kind producer, co-producer and distributor of distinctive, engaging, relevant and innovative documentary and animated films. As a talent incubator, it is one of the world’s leading creative centres. The NFB has enabled Canadians to tell and hear each other’s stories for over eight decades, and its films are a reliable and accessible educational resource. The NFB is also recognized around the world for its expertise in preservation and conservation, and for its rich and vibrant collection of works, which form a pillar of Canada’s cultural heritage. To date, the NFB has produced more than 14,000 works, 6,500 of which can be streamed free of charge at nfb.ca. The NFB and its productions and co-productions have earned over 7,000 awards, including 11 Oscars and an Honorary Academy Award for overall excellence in cinema.