Over 65 million people around the world have been forced from their homes to escape famine, climate change and war in the greatest human displacement since World War II. Human Flow, an epic film journey led by the internationally renowned artist Ai Weiwei, gives a powerful visual expression to this massive human migration. The documentary elucidates both the staggering scale of the refugee crisis and its profoundly personal human impact. Captured over the course of an eventful year in 23 countries, the film follows a chain of urgent human stories that stretches across the globe in countries including Afghanistan, Bangladesh, France, Greece, Germany, Iraq, Israel, Italy, Kenya, Mexico, and Turkey. Human Flow is a witness to its subjects and their desperate search for safety, shelter and justice: from teeming refugee camps to perilous ocean crossings to barbed-wire borders; from dislocation and disillusionment to courage, endurance and adaptation; from the haunting lure of lives left.
The Rest is a documentary by Ai Weiwei about refugees who arrived in Europe, the world's bastion of human rights. These refugees fled war and persecution in Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria, and other conflict-ridden countries. They sought refuge in France, Italy, Germany, Greece, Sweden, and Turkey, but most have not found the safe havens of their dreams. Instead, they now live in limbo within a disintegrating humanitarian aid system, no longer the center of media attention, yet unable to move forward with their lives. They are "The Rest". In 2017 Ai Weiwei released "Human Flow", his epic film about the global refugee crisis, spanning 23 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, and North America. Since then, the crisis has only worsened, and rising anti-immigrant sentiments have been stoked by populist European politicians. Those refugees awaiting sanctuary in Europe found their lives put on hold, victims of overburdened aid systems, media fatigue and intensifying nationalism.