I Am (Not) a Monster

In this thought-provoking and playful documentary, ebullient director Nelly Ben Hayoun-Stépanian (Disaster Playground) takes you on a journey to find the origins of knowledge.

Dir Nelly Ben Hayoun-Stépanian
Prod Monika Baran, Chloe McClellan, Christopher Hird, Nelly Ben Hayoun-Stépanian
With Noam Chomsky, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Magid Magid
Prod Co Nelly Ben Hayoun Studios Ltd

Starting with the thoughts of political theorist Hannah Arendt, Ben Hayoun-Stépanian (founder of the University of the Underground) travels the world to meet a variety of people and organisations including Magid Magid, Lord Mayor of Sheffield at the time, Pussy Riot activist Nadya Tolokonnikova, philosophers, alternative schools and many more. She ponders on the ownership and plurality of our thoughts, and the means by which freedom of learning and innovative education can exist in contemporary times. The result is a joyful potpourri of ideas and alternative thinking, propelled by a thrilling soundtrack of Ethiopian hip hop. Asserting that the need for change has never been more urgent, I Am (Not) a Monster is an ambitious yet accessible activist outcry: ‘knowledge is power’.

Laure Bonville

Festival guests

These members of the filmmaking team are expected to attend the festival:

  • Nelly Ben Hayoun-Stepanian, director; Chloe McClellan, producer; Magid Magid, cast.

See the full list of visiting festival guests. Please note that we can't guarantee guest attendance at any particular screening.