April 21, 2013 — The Denton Record-Chronicle’s (Texas) announcement of the DVD release.
“This compilation documentary takes existing footage, whether in the form of newsreels or recent phone or Internet clips, and assembles a portrait of five countries that have suffered or continue to suffer under some sort of authoritarian control: Venezuela, Egypt, Malaysia, Ukraine, and Zimbabwe. The film also examines and how the countries built counter-activities against its dictators. Filmmaker Ben Moses also scored some impressive interviews with many involved, including former leaders of Ukraine and Malaysia, opposition leaders of Zimbabwe, as well as two pivotal Egyptian figures in the rebellion against Hosni Mubarak’s regime. The interviews lend insight into the familiar footage, which is still harrowing.”
April 18, 2013 — Movie City News’ announces the release of “A Whisper to a Roar.”
“At a time when only 57.5 percent of all eligible voters bothered to submit a ballot in one of the most contentious presidential races in American history, people around the world were putting their lives on the line for the privilege of standing in long lines to vote. Typically, when given the opportunity to participate in elections that aren’t rigged from the start, people recently freed from tyranny wouldn’t think of not exercising their right to make their preferences known. Even so, several prominent democracies have instituted compulsory voting as a way to trump apathy and lethargy. (In Chicago, it’s widely believed that dead people vote early and often in some precincts.) Ben Moses’ occasionally disturbing, if ultimately inspirational documentary, “A Whisper to a Roar,” doesn’t soft-peddle the dangers of challenging the status quo in countries where sham elections and corruption are standard operating procedure. In the Ukraine, we listen to former president Viktor Yushchenko describe the experience of being poisoned with dioxin for daring to challenge the entrenched incumbent. Oliver Stone and Sean Penn may have thought Hugo Chavez was the bee’s knees, but Moses was able to document the abuses that followed his evolution from reformer to despot. The documentary also takes us to Zimbabwe, Malaysia and pre-Arab Spring Egypt. The segments are interwoven to demonstrate how pro-democracy movements around the world are similar to each other, while taking into account the cultural and political peculiarities that make them unique. What the film doesn’t do is suggest that, once established, democracies will endure against the many threats to freedom.”
April 16, 2013 — The Anderson Vision’s announcement of “A Whisper to a Roar’s” DVD release.
“Ben Moses does an excellent job of showing us how the world can change through direct action. There’s nothing as thrilling as seeing ordinary people come together against a common enemy. However, I don’t feel that we got enough background on their causes. Too often modern culture rushes to support any underdog without realizing what they’re about. Such is the case with Syria and the complicated matter as to how we should best support them. While staging the documentary across such a wide tapestry might’ve split focus, it does show common bonds appear across the world. Life sucks through most of the second and third world, this examination gives you a chance to realize how lucky you are to be in the first. Still, it’s a drop in the bucket. I can see this documentary getting teenagers and young people interested in global response, but what next? I can’t ever escape such feelings after checking out these docs. The DVD comes with extended interviews and a trailer. The A/V Quality is pretty sharp for standard definition. However, there are minor moments of digital noise. The Dolby track supports the dialogue and that’s all that matters for an important documentary like this. In the end, I’d recommend a purchase.”
April 16, 2013 — OnVideo.org announced “A Whisper to a Roar’s” DVD release.
“Democracy begins to break out in five far-flung countries that have suffered for generations under dictatorship and authoritarianism — and it’s all recorded as it happened in this powerful and eye-opening documentary. Focuses on the recent and ongoing struggles for democracy in Egypt (the Arab Spring), Malaysia, Ukraine (the Orange Revolution), Venezuela and Zimbabwe. Directed by Ben Moses (creator and co-producer of “Good Morning, Vietnam”) and narrated by Alfred Molina.”
April 15, 2013 — Huffington Post World blog about the film’s release by Deborah Stambler
“It speaks to people who come from or live in other countries that are engaged in similar circumstances where they’re trying to get to democracy or they’ve got democracy but it’s insecure.”
“The very first question Moses was asked after the screening was ‘How do we fix it?’
I said that you’re asking an American filmmaker how to solve your political problems. I’m not the one you should be asking. But it hurt in a way because they’re so desperate to make things better. They feel like the Orange Revolution that they fought for 9 years ago has failed. I said that I don’t think it failed at all.'”
April 14, 2013 — Billy O’Keefe’s DVD release announcement for the McClatchy Tribune.
“A feature film isn’t the best medium through which to present five instances around the world — Egypt, Ukraine, Venezuela, Malaysia and Zimbabwe — of oppressed citizens finally having enough and striking back against their governments. But as a primer or some kind of democracy-in-action starter pack, “A Whisper to a Roar” pretty much gets it perfectly right. “Roar” cycles periodically between countries as if to present five smaller three-act films at once, with each scenario getting a who’s who and what’s what before the film returns later to dig deeper and present each populace’s discontent in more personal detail. If that doesn’t sound dry on paper, it certainly sounds repetitive. But tedium never stands a chance against “Roar’s” storytelling approach, which mixes the empirical and personal so thoroughly as to make them one. These aren’t current events lessons so much as stories about what’s going on out there, and while “Roar” leaves most of the talking to others — there’s no narrator, only the occasional text blurb providing context — it takes special care to give faces to every name on both sides of authority. The real stories begin where this ends, because the best way to follow a revolution in 2013 is live and from the mouths and keyboards of those on the ground as things unfold. But for those who need a crash course first, “Roar” is as productive a 90-minute class as you’re likely to find.”
January 31, 2013 – Newspri.com covers “A Whisper to a Roar” screening and panel at Harvard Kennedy School on January 28th. By John Goldwin
January 29, 2013 — The Boston Globe’s article about A Whisper to a Roar’s screening at the Harvard Kennedy School.
January 28, 2013 — The Boston Herald’s preview of Esraa Abdel Fattah’s appearance at the Harvard Kennedy School screening.