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Special Flight

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PBS Premiere: July 1, 2013


Special Flight is a dramatic account of the plight of undocumented foreigners at the Frambois detention center in Geneva, Switzerland, and of the wardens who struggle to reconcile humane values with the harsh realities of a strict deportation system. The 25 Frambois inmates featured are among the thousands of asylum seekers and illegal immigrants imprisoned without charge or trial and facing deportation to their native countries, where they fear repression or even death. The film, made in Switzerland, is a heart-wrenching exposé of the contradictions between the country's compassionate social policies and the intractability of its immigration laws.

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Film Information

Special Flight (60 min.)

Premiere Date: July 1, 2013

Streaming Dates: Expired

Photos: Download Here

Trailer: Link | Embed

Filmmaker: Fernand Melgar Bio | Interview | Statement

Press: Press Release | Fact Sheet | Critical Acclaim | 2014 Emmy Nominations Press Release


Fernand Melgar
Fernand Melgar

Film Update

Critical Acclaim

Somber and beautifully modulated...There isn’t a slack moment... everything rings true... The director also shows dignity, not to mention courage.”

—Mike Hale,The New York Times

The fly-on-the-wall style of the film... recalls the institutional documentaries of Frederick Wiseman (and there are no finer documentaries to recall). Does it have something to say about American issues to an American audience? You bet it does.”

—Robert Lloyd,The Los Angeles Times

The docu’s subjects get under the skin, and their plight represents one of the major challenges to immigration policy not just in Switzerland, but in the First World as a whole.”

—Jay Weissberg,Variety

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