From her childhood bedroom in the Chicago suburbs, Ala'a, an American teenage girl, uses social media to coordinate the revolution in Syria. Armed with Facebook, Twitter, Skype and cameraphones, she helps her social network "on the ground" in Syria brave snipers and shelling in the streets to show the world the human rights atrocities of a dictator.
But just because the world can see the violence doesn't mean the world can help. As the revolution rages on, everyone in Ala'a's network must decide what is the most effective way to fight a dictator: social media or AK—47s.
“Alaa Basatneh isn't the only one conducting this electronic media war - there are many others, who later became sources for more traditional media outlets - but the story of this Syrian girl deserves to have an entire film devoted to her...She represents a generation of strong Arab women, capable of doing a lot for their society and country, when given the chance.”—AL JAZEERA
“What's relatively fresh and interesting about the documentary #chicagogirl...is its emphasis on the logistics, and its remarkable protagonist.”—The Hollywood Reporter
Official Selection IDFA
WINNER DOC U Competition - IDFA
WINNER Cinema for Peace Justice Award—Cinema for Peace Foundation Berlin
WINNER Golden Butterfly in Student's Choice category, Amnesty International's Movies That Matter, The Hague.
WINNER Museum of Emigration Award (best film about emigration and expatriates) and SPECIAL MENTION Canon of Cinematography Award, Planete+Doc, Warsaw.
TOP 10 HUMAN RIGHTS HEROES of 2014: #ChicagoGirl and Ala'a Basatneh, Amnesty International