Synopsis by Mark Deming
Eight internationally known filmmakers address vital issues concerning the Third World in this omnibus feature. In 2000, 191 countries affiliated with the United Nations agreed to take part in a program to cut world poverty in half before the year 2015 by observing eight Millennium Development Goals. In Eight, each of these goals is addressed in a short film from a different filmmaker. "Tiya's Dream" by Adberrahmane Sissako focuses on "Eradicating Extreme Poverty and Hunger" in a story about an African student preparing a class project on the Millennium Development Goals. A child in Iceland is learning about Nepal in Gael García Bernal's "The Letter", a variation on the theme of "Achieving Universal Primary Education." Mira Nair examines the issue "Promote Gender Equality" in "How Can It Be", about a Muslim woman who wants to leave her husband. "Mansion on the Hill" by Gus Van Sant focuses on contemporary teens as he contemplates efforts to "Reduce Child Mortality." Jan Kounen traveled to Peru to film his polemic on "Improving Maternal Health," "The Story of Panshin Beka". A man struggles with a fatal disease in Gaspar Noe's "SIDA", aligned to the goal "Combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria and Other Diseases." A village in the Australian outback struggles with environmental issues in "The Water Diary", a parable on "Ensuring Environmental Sustainability" by Jane Campion. And Wim Wenders looks into the ways people in need can help themselves in "Person to Person", his study of "Global Partnerships for Development." Eight received its world premiere at the 2008 Rome Film Festival.
poverty, social-issues, AIDS, crisis, HIV, mankind, mortality, United-Nations