Vetrichelvi was just 17 years old when she joined the terrorist organization of Tamil Tigers. During decades long civil war in Sri Lanka she lost one arm and one eye, but also became known as a radical ideologist of the movement and a poet. Now she is determined to find her former comrades and write a book about the untold stories of the female fighters. In a country, where those who speak out very often disappear, Vetrichelvi’s mission is a dangerous one and a game changer. Filmed over the course of 4 years "Scars" is a road movie through a postwar country still troubled by riots between the two nations and a journey into the past recreated by unique archives and cinematic reconstructions. It‘s a universal story of life after war, of wounds that do not heal and scars that remain for generations to come. A story told from a female perspective.

The film focuses on individual stories of Vetrichelvi and her friends, showing the mechanisms that led these otherwise ordinary teenage girls (sometimes as young as 12) to join a terrorist organization and how it affected their lives. They have spent their whole adult life fighting and now, after the lost war, they have no job opportunities, are excluded from the society and stigmatized. After meeting one of her former comrades - now with a completely destroyed face, unable to even speak properly - Vetrichelvi breaks down. Soon she starts an organization for handicapped women and tries to move on, forget about the past. But then a much darker truth unravels. "Scars" brings us the never told before story of forcibly recruited female fighters and sheds a new and controversial light on the unresolved conflict in Sri Lanka. Is it possible to start a new life when you've been part of an organization considered terrorist? And is Vetrichelvi ready to face the truth about her own role in the movement?

Poland, Germany
Agnieszka Zwiefka
Agnieszka Zwiefka
Chilli Productions, Kloos & co. Ost Ug

Agnieszka Zwiefka »

Agnieszka Zwiefka is an awarded documentary film director. Her latest film „The Queen of Silence“ (2014) premiered at IDFA festival in Amsterdam in the main competition and was screened at over 50 festivals worldwide, awarded 15 times and coproduced by such TV stations as HBO Europe, ZDF/ARTE, SVT, YLE and RAI. In her films she balances between reality and fantasy, creating hybrids that cross the border between documentary and fiction. Winner of Silver Horn at Krakow Film Festival, the Big Golden Nanook at Flahertiana Festival, Urania Award at LET’S CEE Festival, Zoom Award at MFF T-Mobile New Horizons and many others.

Agnieszka Zwiefka also holds a PhD degree and works as a lecturer of documentary film at the Institute of Journalism and Social Communication at the University of Wroclaw. Member of European Film Academy, Polish Filmmakers Society and EWA European Women’s Audiovisual Network. Alumna of workshops Dok.Incubator, EsoDoc, ScripTeast and Berlinale Talents.