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Human Rights Law  

Last Updated: Jul 17, 2014 URL: http://libguides.law.uiowa.edu/humanrights Print Guide RSS Updates

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Human Rights & War Crimes

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After the Truth
Synopsis: The famous Nazi-Doctor Dr. Josef Mengele - the "death angel of Auschwitz", who killed more than 300.000 people - comes back from his hide out in Argentina to Germany as a 87 year old man. He must stand up in front of a court for his crimes. The young solicitor Peter Rohm has to defend him. But Peter Rohm - himself an expert on Josef Mengele and his crimes - feels unable to do this. When he decides to take on the case he endangers not only the relationship to his wife but also their lifes. A fictional story around the non-fictional person of Josef Mengele who died in 1979. - www.imdb.com
Release: 1999
Genre: Drama Crime Thriller
Actors: Kai Wiesinger Gotz George Karoline Eichhorn
Director: Roland Suso Richter

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Synopsis: About a 1839 mutiny aboard a slave ship that is traveling towards the northeastern coast of America. Much of the story involves a court-room drama about the free man who led the revolt. - www.imdb.com
Release: 1997
Genre: Drama History Mystery
Actors: Djimon Hounsou Matthew McConaughey Anthony Hopkins
Director: Steven Spielberg
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The Bloody Judge
Synopsis: Judge George Jeffreys, the infamous 17th century witchfinder whose unholy obsession fuels a jaw-dropping spree of torture. Most complete and uncensored version restored from various European vault elements. What Christopher Lee calls "scenes of extraordinary depravity.
Release: 1970
Genre: Horror
Actors: Christopher Lee Maria Schell Leo Genn
Director: Jesus Franco

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Broken Promises: The United Nations at 60
Synopsis: The history of the United Nations highlighting the gap between the good intentions and ideals of its inception and the sad reality of its present state of inefficiency and corruption. - www.imdb.com
Release: 2005
Genre: Documentary
Features: Ron Silver Kofi Annan Romeo Dallaire
Director: Kevin Knoblock

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The Bounty
Synopsis: The familiar story of Lieutenant Bligh, whose cruelty leads to a mutiny on his ship. This version follows both the efforts of Fletcher Christian to get his men beyond the reach of British retribution, and the epic voyage of Lieutenant Bligh to get his loyalists safely to East Timor in a tiny lifeboat. - www.imdb.com
Release: 1984
Genre: Adventure History
Actors: Mel Gibson Anthony Hopkins Laurence Olivier
Director: Roger Donaldson

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The Hasty Heart
Synopsis: The war is suddenly over for two Allied soldiers injured in Burma and sent to a remote jungle hospital. Facing the battle of recovery, the easy-going Yank and the proud yet stubborn Scotsman form a bond with the other patients and Army staff.
Release: 1949
Genre: Drama
Actors: Ronald Reagan Patricia Neal Richard Todd
Director: Vincent Sherman

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High Crimes
Synopsis: High-profile attorney Claire Kubik puts her career on the line to defend her husband Tom Kubik after it is revealed that he is a Marine named Ron Chapman wanted for the murder of Latin American villagers.
Release: 2002
Genre: Drama Crime Mystery
Actors: Jim Caviezel Morgan Freeman Ashley Judd
Director: Carl Franklin
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The House on Carroll Street
Synopsis: Emily Crane is fired after refusing to give names to a 1951 House Un-American Activities Committee, and takes a part-time job as companion to an old lady. One day her attention is drawn to a noisy argument being conducted largely in German in a neighbouring house, the more so since one of those involved is her main senator prosecutor. Starting to look into things, she gradually enlists the help of FBI officer Cochran who was initially detailed to check her out. Just as well when things turn nasty.
Release: 1988
Genre: Drama Thriller
Actors: Kelly McGillis Jeff Daniels Mandy Patinkin
Director: Peter Yates

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In the Name of the Father
Synopsis: Man's coerced confession to an IRA bombing he didn't do imprisons his father as well; a British lawyer helps fight for their freedom. - www.imdb.com
Release: 1993
Genre: Drama Biography
Actors: Daniel Day-Lewis Pete Postlethwaite Alison Crosbie
Director: Jim Sheridan

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The Incident
Synopsis: Small town lawyer, Harmon Cobb, defends a Nazi prisoner of war against murder charges. - www.imdb.com
Release: 1990
Genre: Television/TV Movie Drama
Actors: Walter Matthau Susan Blakely Robert Carradine
Director: Joseph Sargent

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The John Frankenheimer Collection: The Manchurian Candidate
Synopsis: A former Korean War POW is brainwashed by Communists into becoming a political assassin. But another former prisoner may know how to save him. - www.imdb.com
Release: 1962
Genre: Drama Mystery Romance
Actors: Frank Sinatra Laurence Harvey Janet Leigh
Director: John Frankenheimer

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The John Frankenheimer Collection: The Train
Synopsis: In 1944, a German colonel loads a train with French art treasures to send to Germany. The Resistance must stop it without damaging the cargo. - www.imdb.com
Release: 1964
Genre: Thriller War Action
Actors: Burt Lancaster Paul Scofield Jeanne Moreau
Director: John Frankenheimer
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Judgment at Nuremberg
Synopsis: In 1948, an American court in occupied Germany tries four Nazi judges for war crimes. - www.imdb.com
Release: 1961
Genre: Drama History War
Actors: Spencer Tracy Burt Lancaster Richard Widmark
Director: Stanley Kramer
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Judgment: The Court Martial of Lieutenant William Calley
Synopsis: The trial and conviction of Calley, an e 27-year-old lieutenant charged with murdering 102 men, women and children in the Vietnamese hamlet of My Lai.
Release: 1975
Genre: Television/TV Movie Drama
Actors: Tony Musante Richard Basehart Harrison Ford
Director: Lee Bernhardi

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The Lives of Others
Synopsis: In 1984 East Berlin, an agent of the secret police, conducting surveillance on a writer and his lover, finds himself becoming increasingly absorbed by their lives. - www.imdb.com
Release: 2006
Genre: Drama Thriller
Actors: Ulrich Muhe Martina Gedeck Sebastian Koch
Director: Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck

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The Man in the Glass Booth
Synopsis: Arthur Goldman is a rich Jewish industrialist, living in luxury in a Manhattan high-rise. He banters with his assistant Charlie, often shocking Charlie with his outrageousness and irreverence about aspects of Jewish life. Nonetheless, Charlie is astonished when, one day, Israeli secret agents burst in and arrest Goldman for being not a Jewish businessman but a Nazi war criminal. Whisked to Israel for trial, Goldman forces his accusers to face not only his presumed guilt but their own. - www.imdb.com
Release: 1975
Genre: Drama
Actors: Maximilian Schell Lois Nettleton Lawrence Pressman
Director: Arthur Hiller

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Mutiny on the Bounty
Synopsis: In 1789, the HMS Bounty sets sail under Captain William Bligh. Bligh is the cruelest taskmaster and his cruelties become more than first mate Christian can bear. After the Captain causes the death of the ship’s doctor, the crew stage a mutiny, with Christian in charge. Bligh is set adrift in an open boat with a handful of his loyal officers and limited supplies.
Release: 1935
Genre: Drama Adventure History
Actors: Charles Laughton Clark Gable Franchot Tone
Director: Frank Lloyd
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Not Without My Daughter
Synopsis: An American woman, trapped in Islamic Iran by her brutish husband, must find a way to escape with her daughter as well. - www.imdb.com
Release: 1990
Genre: Drama Thriller
Actors: Sally Field Alfred Molina Sheila Rosenthal
Director: Brian Gilbert

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Synopsis: The dramatized account of the war crime trials following the defeat of Nazi Germany in World War II. - www.imdb.com
Release: 2000
Genre: Television/TV Mini-Series Drama History
Actors: Alec Baldwin Brian Cox Christopher Plummer
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Path to War
Synopsis: In the mid-1960s, President Johnson and his foreign-policy team debate the decision to withdraw from or escalate the war in Vietnam. - www.imdb.com
Release: 2002
Genre: Drama
Actors: Michael Gambon Donald Sutherland Alec Baldwin
Director: John Frankenheimer

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Paths of Glory
Synopsis: When soldiers in WW1 refuse to continue with an impossible attack, their superiors decide to make an example of them. - www.imdg.com
Release: 1957
Genre: Drama War
Actors: Kirk Douglas Ralph Meeker Adolphe Menjou
Director: Stanley Kubrick
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The Reader
Synopsis: Post-WWII Germany: Nearly a decade after his affair with an older woman came to a mysterious end, law student Michael Berg re-encounters his former lover as she defends herself in a war-crime trial. - www.imdb.com
Release: 2008
Genre: Drama Romance
Actors: Kate Winslet Ralph Fiennes Bruno Ganz
Director: Stephen Daldry
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Sophie Scholl: The Final Days
Synopsis: A dramatization of the final days of Sophie Scholl, one of the most famous members of the German World War II anti-Nazi resistance movement, The White Rose. - www.imdb.com
Release: 2005
Genre: Drama Crime Biography
Actors: Julia Jentsch Fabian Hinrichs Gerarld Alexander
Director: Marc Rothemund
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Human Rights law involves that area of international law that seeks to set normative rules and values for people's basic rights, inter alia, to freedom of conscience and freedom from bodily harm, two overarching topics that may be broken down into many sub-topics or related topics, such as the elimination of all forms of discrimination against women, and the rights of the child. 

The topic of international human rights law includes international conventions and decisions of international tribunals which, analogizing to the common law, might be termed "primary law."  In addition, commentary and research, what might be termed "secondary sources" in the common law, will be found in abundance in both treatises and journal articles.

In addition, international human rights law has very good web resources, a selection of which will be provided in this guide.

Introductory Materials

The following webpages provide good resources for starting research in Human Rights Law:


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