Verzio International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival, the only festival of its kind in Hungary, has been organized on an annual basis since 2004. It aims to promote open society, democratic values, rule-of-law, freedom of expression, political and cultural pluralism, and to expose abuse and global human rights violations through creative, quality documentaries.
Verzio has grown dynamically over the past 14 years, with more than 700 documentaries screened for over 80,000 visitors. The program includes exceptional documentary films addressing important issues such as poverty, civil war, war crimes, terrorism, crisis zones, political oppression, freedom of the press, minorities, nationalism, xenophobia, racism, discrimination, migration, integration, equal rights, women’s rights, feminism, gender roles, sexual diversity, socialization of children and young people, drug abuse, corruption, domestic violence, people living on the margins of society, exclusion of the disabled and the sick, and stereotypes.
Verzio has been showcasing outstanding films from all over the world which examine the present, reflect on the past, arouse sympathy in the viewer, and which approach their subjects in authentic and imaginative ways.
Alongside screenings, Verzio implements independent discussion platforms such as round table sessions, open debates and Q&A-s with filmmakers, human rights activists and civil organizations. These occasions present unique opportunities to create a dialogue between the audience and professionals, as well as experts of documentary filmmaking and human rights. They also encourage participants to consider the social responsibility of the film industry, and the effect documentaries have on public opinion. Verzio aims to engage the broader public in the discussion on human rights. It also supports critical thinking and media literacy.
Verzio contributes to the international platform of the documentary film industry by organizing workshops and master classes led by world-renowned professionals. It also provides those in the national film industry with a special opportunity to join a wider, global circulation.
The Student Jury is organized to promote young critics, and free educational screenings are held for high school students. Apart from screenings in Budapest, Verzio programs in Pécs and Szeged are building a wider platform for films and viewpoints to be examined creatively and critically in Hungary.