Europe's refugees are met at eye level in a film by the Chinese artist Ai Weiwei, who defends the ideals of humanism in the midst of the crisis.
Parallel with his practice in other art forms, Ai Weiwei is a documentary filmmaker, and just like his other work his films are an indignant defence of humanism and human dignity. 'The Rest' documents the situation among many of the refugees who live in a limbo in Europe, where the humanitarian system is overloaded, the media are exhausted and xenophobia is on the rise. Over 900 hours of footage have been edited down to an unsentimental, clear-sighted and all the more gripping film with the individual human being in the lead role. And it is precisely in the individual's story that there turns out to be hope in the midst of hopelessness. 'The Rest' is a parallel work to Ai Weiwei's film 'Human Flow' from 2017, but the scale here is in line with the body, voice and experience of an individual refugee. The form is listening and attentive. The intricate chaos of various crises, which in the European public has been named 'the refugee crisis', has not blown over. 'The Rest' is a deeply human defence of the people who are still living in it.