All the Invisible Children (2005)
The goal of this anthology was to tell a story about ignored, forgotten or unseen children in the home country of each director. The filmmakers were given no other guidelines or rules in the hopes that the stories they told would be unique and close to their hearts, and it seemed to work out wonderfully. The press book for the DVD quotes one of the anthology’s producers, Chiara Tilesi:
The title says it all: ‘All the Invisible Children’; our aim is to bring ignored children’s issues into public awareness and consciousness, if nothing else, to make them more visible. Cinema, like music and other art forms, is a perfect medium to raise the bar of awareness, empathy, compassion and understanding. We all felt that this was an opportunity that needed to be seized. I am so glad we did, and I thank all our participants very sincerely.
We viewed two of the shorts from this collection in class, Song Song and Little Cat directed by John Woo and Jesus Children of America by Spike Lee. The films were constructed and shot in very different ways, with exceedingly different goals. Song Song was loaded with pathos, building a heartwrenching story through deeply personal experiences with two vastly different characters. Jesus Children shocked with cavalier brutality and made the audience feel for the main character through their distaste with everyone around her, causing her to act out in violence and hatred. Overall, these films told two important stories, and they serve to show us that the mistreatment of children is both transnational and wrong. The producers’ goal was to raise awareness, and they certainly did.