Premiering Documentary Casts Spotlight on Estonian Civil Society

laine uudised-laine
16. Oct 2013

"Occupy Your Wall," a film that examines the development of Estonian civil society in recent years, will reach Estonian cinemas today.

Furnished with English subtitles, the film follows the stories of three Estonian activist communities – the Pühajärv school community, the Internet Community, and the Tuhala community that opposed mining in the Nabala Protected Environment Zone.

"We want to depict a problem with our film. If our understanding of civil society is confined to singing and trash cleanup, then we will not be capable of advancing our shared cause, nor balancing society and the elite that governs it," one of the filmmakers, Peeter Vihma, told ETV.

Co-director Artur Talvik said Estonian civil society has progressed significantly during the two years in which the film was being made.

"These initiatives in which we shape our shared space should emerge from the bottom up. I myself really believe that bottom-up initiatives will save our crisis-plagued and clogged representative democracy, as we have seen in the test presented by the Tallinn elections," Talvik said.

Eesti Ekspress journalist Raul Ranne praised the film as a success, saying it showed the disturbing truth and that his only critique was that the filmmakers' criticism wasn't harsh enough.

"This film spices up the discussion with concrete examples and makes one think that maybe we are talking too much and doing too little. This film [has the potential to] shake us so that we become braver and more forceful in our activities, so that we aren't reduced to isolated babblers," Ranne said.