Screened as part of NZIFF 2006

ScaredSacred 2004

Directed by Velcrow Ripper

Canadian filmmaker Velcrow Ripper takes us on an engaging personalised tour of the planet's dark side in search of hope, reconciliation and rebirth in the wake of catastrophe.

Canada In Arabic, Bosnian, Dari, English, Hindi and Khmer with English subtitles
105 minutes 35mm

Screenplay, Photography, Editor, Sound, Narrator

Additional photography

Guillermo Escalon
Heather Frise
Amey Kazymerchyk
Samer Shalabi


Ani DiFranco
DJ Spooky
John Beltran
Live Human


Vancouver 2004


Canadian filmmaker Velcrow Ripper takes us on an engagingly personalised tour of the planet's dark side. The son of a Jewish-Baha'i family who gave him an expansive view of the world and its people, he searches for reconciliation and rebirth – for hope – in the wake of catastrophe. We visit the site of the Union Carbide gas disaster in Bhopal; the former Khmer Rouge killing fields in Cambodia; Sarajevo; Palestine; Hiroshima; Afghan refugee camps, and New York soon after 9/11. Over the course of a five-year odyssey he unearths stories of resilience, activism and recovery. Ripper also incorporates the words of the Dalai Lama on the first dawn of the new millennium, at Sarnath, India, into his remarkably beautiful and unflinching documentary. Exploring what it means to be a global citizen today, he continues his voyage travelling the world to show and discuss his film.

"Ripper's odyssey yields a wealth of beautiful imagery, valuable observations, and most importantly, compassion… filled with moments of great power and grace.” — Jason Anderson, Eye Weekly