No Visible Trauma, 98 min (theatrical) & 52 min (TV) / Above the Law, 44 min (TV), 2020
In the midst of a global uprising against police violence and systemic racism, No Visible Trauma / Above the Law examines a deeply troubled police department and reveals the devastating consequences of unchecked police brutality. Despite its relatively low crime rates, recent years have seen the Calgary Police Service shoot and kill more people than officers in any other Canadian city, and more than either the New York or Chicago police departments in 2018. Five years in the making, the film unravels the intertwined stories of three individuals who were the victims of extreme violence at the hands of police officers. From the kidnapping and beating of a young immigrant from Ghana, to the fatal shooting of an unarmed man during a “wellness check”, the film exposes a criminal justice system that fails to hold police officers accountable for their actions.
No Visible Trauma had its World Premiere at the Vancouver International Film Festival and its International Premiere at DOK.fest München!
Winner of the Audience Award for Best Documentary Feature at Calgary’s CUFF.Docs in 2020, the Audience Choice Award (Documentary Feature) at the 2021 Grand River Film Festival, the Honourable Mention for Best Canadian Feature Film at the 2021 Available Light Film Festival, the Best of Festival Award for Documentary Feature and Tribute Award for Outstanding Achievement in Film at the 2021 Richmond International Film Festival, the Best Feature Documentary Award at the 2022 Jacksonville Film Festival, and a Special Mention for Feature Documentary at the 2022 Social Impact Media Awards.
No Visible Trauma was presented at the AIDC Factory 2020: Rough Cut Sessions
Check out some of the coverage of the film in The Star, CBC News, The Globe and Mail, The National Post, Alberta Native News, POV Magazine, The Media Co-op, Exclaim!, NOW, Yahoo, and The Georgia Straight!
Listen to interviews with the filmmakers on CBC’s Front Burner, Alberta Advantage (+ follow-up episode RE lawsuit), Kino Lefter, CJSW’s Palgary Almanac, CJSR’s Moving Radio, ELMNT FM’s Moment of Truth, Face2Face, and The Progress Report.
Above the Law was a nominee for the Canadian Screen Award’s 2021 Donald Brittain Award for Best Social/Political Documentary Program and for two Golden Sheaf Awards at the 2021 Yorkton Film Festival.
Directed & Edited by Marc Serpa Francoeur & Robinder Uppal
Produced by Geoff Morrison, Marc Serpa Francoeur, & Robinder Uppal
Cinematography by Daniel Froidevaux & Robinder Uppal
Score by Christine Bougie & Joel Visentin
International Sales: CAT&Docs
Produced by Lost Time Media & Big Cedar Films in participation with CBC (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation), CMF (Canada Media Fund), and the Hot Docs Ted Rogers Fund