• 3 films

As early as 1937, the Chisso Corporation began dumping toxic waste into the waters of a fishing village in Minamata, Japan. This initiated a form of often-fatal methylmercury poisoning in the local population – now known as Minamata disease – which causes paralysis, loss of eyesight, damage to hearing, and neurological disorders. Even though Minamata disease was officially certified in 1977, many sufferers are yet to have their affliction properly recognised. In MINAMATA Mandala, Kazuo Hara tracks the seemingly endless legal struggles of several victims of the disease, as they battle in the courts for compensation and fair treatment, being met, at every turn, with the bureaucratic obstinance and indifference of state institutions. Throughout this epic, 15-year journey and three-part film, Hara treats each individual and the local community with tremendous empathy, and raises necessary global questions about public health, corporate accountability, and the environment.