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Shadow Game

Original title: Shadow Game
German title: Shadow Game
Netherlands, 2021

Director: Blankevoort, Eefje & Driel, Els van
Production company: Prospektor, Witfilm
Age recommendation: 16 years and up
Length: 94 min.
Film genre: Documentary

Shadow Game follows a group of minor migrants on their journey through Europe. Fleeing poverty and war, they - and their families - have fixed their hopes on Europe: there it is safe and prosperous, people are kind and respect human rights. But once in Europe, these minors find things aren’t quite as idyllic. Within Europe walls and fences have sprung up. Crossing the borders in Europe – The Game – as minor migrants call it, has become extremely dangerous. Reaching their final destination has become increasingly difficult.

‘Prison Island’, ‘The Pass of Death’ and ‘The Talking Fence’: on their journey through Europe these youngsters face obstacles of mythical proportions. On these various ‘game levels’ in Europe, we meet our main protagonists and dive into their world: Asif from Afghanistan, Pakistani Ali and Durrab in Serbia, a group of Sudanese friends in Ventimiglia, the Nigerian Hope in Palermo and the Syrian Adam on Lesbos.

We follow them in their daily lives, where they survive in illegal labour, try to break the next dangerous barrier in their journey or are about to give up. But they are also children, who play, have fun, and even make crossing the border into a ‘game’. Their journey is dangerous, but also an exciting adventure. They are vulnerable, but also determined and fearless. In search of a better life, they keep trying; their hope is bigger than their fear. But in this game of chance, what are their odds?

Dok.fest Munich 2021, Lucas Frankfurt CFF 2021, Utrecht FF 2021 (awarded), JEF CFF Vlaanderen 2022, Luxembourg City IFF 2022 (awarded)

Study guide: German

World sales address/es:
Cinema Delicatessen (NL)