Glasgow’s Centre for Contemporary Arts (CCA) has been at the forefront of Glasgow’s bustling culture scene since it was established in 1992, and prides itself on exhibiting the avant-garde, the independent, and the cutting edge. This mission statement lends itself each year to the Take One Action! film festival: an annual event which exhibits some of the best of the world’s independent campaign filmmaking.
Glasgow’s leg of the festival runs between the CCA and the GFT from 14th-25th September and consists of several UK premiere screenings, directorial masterclasses, and Q&As with industry professionals. The majority of the films screened at the festival are campaign documentaries, intermingled with an assortment of fictional pieces that still maintain the agitprop nature of its content.
Although there is no compulsory common theme of the festival, several of this year’s films appear to focus on concepts of solidarity. Spanish fictional drama ‘El Olivio’ (Bollain, 2016) is the story of a young girl who travels to Germany in search of her grandfather’s olive tree, taken from their land 10 years earlier. Silvia Munt’s 2015 documentary about the 2008 Spanish economic crisis, ‘A Farm of Passage’, theoretically could not be more different from ‘El Olivio’, yet the concept and practice of self-sacrifice and solidarity in the face of adversity prevails in both.
At a time when Generation Y are becoming increasingly politicised and struggling to make themselves heard in the midst of social and political change, Take One Action’s programme of films spanning the globe, from Spain to Sudan, reminds us to think on a larger scale. The trend of the moment in terms of activism appears to concern itself solely with Change.org petitions shared on Facebook and the circulation of hashtags which soon fade into the twittersphere, selective in their coverage.
Take One Action! covers all manner of topical issues which appear to have no expiration date; reminding us that the world’s problems do not disappear as quickly as our Facebook feed refreshes. Our generation is crying out for something to fight for and Take One Action!, now in its 9th year, is still providing us with all of the inspiration we ever asked for.