Freedom of speech is recognized as a fundamental human right. However, in reality, this right is not always fully respected.
There is a fragile line between right and wrong, especially when it comes to a word or an ideology. If only one side speaks, how to have a more multi-dimensional and objective view? So freedom of speech is fundamentally a right every one should have.
Here are 3 films about the freedom of expression, highlighting the contradictions in the ideological values of a society and the endless struggle to express one’s view.
The Fifth Estate (2013)
‘The Fifth Estate‘ is based on a shocking real event . It is the story of the birth, rise and fall of WikiLeaks website and its owner, Julian Assange (excellently played by Benedict Cumberbatch).
WikiLeaks was a place to publish encrypted news anonymously – no one knew who posted on the platform, including Julian Assange. Of course, WikiLeaks team took the step of determining the accuracy of the information, especially negative and influential news.
Over time, it gradually became famous and became the largest distributor of leaked news in the world. The “truths” it posted, including photos, videos, and figures in the Iraq war, when revealed, were a real punch to the Pentagon. Republicans saw Julian as a sinner, while Democrats were not really happy because no one knows what WikiLeaks’ “free speech” will lead to in the future. WikiLeaks easily became a formidable political card, and Julian was unlikely to be the hero forever.
A smart media user should know how to source information from many sides and carefully consider everything – do not rush to believe and agree on everything.
Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984)
First of all, we should talk about the origin of the film, which is the dystopian novel of the same name – Nineteen Eighty-Four. This is considered a classic work on political thought and became the foundation of many future fantasy films around the world.
The work is set in Oceania, which is under the domination of transcontinental superstates and dictatorships. There, the elite made up a small part of the population but were the rulers, while the under-educated proletariat was the main source of labor. There, the government controls and publicly brainwashed the population. History was modified, all information was hidden and only news released for the benefit of the government was released.
The protagonist, Winston Smith, a middle-class editor at Minitrue, specializes in editing historical data at the behest of the contemporary government and deleting notes referring to people who have been “evaporated”. When he found the real history through a book and flipped through the pages, he realized what had been taught as the truths was a lie, which made him restless.
2 + 2 = 5 (short film)
‘2 + 2 = 5’ is one of the concepts that comes from the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four and has gone into our everyday life. The short film ‘2 + 2 = 5’ is like a small Oceania classroom, where you feel its scary brainwashing policy.
Besides, the student’s fight for righteousness is also a struggle for freedom of speech, which is more or less fruitful.