Student Choice Award

Student's Choice Award: "The Story of Qiu Ju"

My vote goes to a Chinese movie that was part of the 30th New York Film Festival back in 1992. It took me 19 years to find out about this film and I just love it! “The Story of Qiu Ju” is a simple story, although developed in China it may not be different from the quest of others around the world, a quest for justice. Qiu Ju is a peasant in rural China. Her husband wants permission to build up a shed to dry chili peppers but the village’s chief deny the permission without further explanation. Frustrated and angry with the permit’s denial the husband mocks the leader for “raising only hens”, in reference to the fact that the chief have only daughters. In a one child policy China sons are preferable to daughters. The chief’s pride was injured and he beats Qiu Ju’s husband and kick him in


Student Choice Award: “The Accused” Gets It Right

When television and film portray the law, the audience usually sees stirring courtroom drama.  The defendant jumps out of his chair and screams “that witness is lying!”  The judge bangs his gavel and says “I’ll have order in this courtroom or I’ll clear the place!”  A witness breaks down on the stand under the severe stress of a cross-examination and cries while reluctantly telling the truth. However, what these films ignore is that by most calculations, only two to three percent of cases actually go to trial (not to mention the fact that even at trial, most of the action is mundane and not nearly as dramatic as one would expect).  Granted, the world of settlements and plea bargains does not make a good show, but that is the reality for most cases.  While “The Accused” ends with a climactic courtroom scene and satisfying verdict, the film understands the reality