#tbt Tahani Rached’s ‘Doctors with Heart’

Director Tahani Rached

By Pat Mullen

POV‘s Throwback Thursday posts usually offer quick shorts that readers can enjoy over a morning coffee, but a revisit of a 2010 article on Tahani Rached by Jocelyne Clarke offered a feature worth revisiting. Rached’s 1994 NFB film Doctors with Heart observes doctors in a Montreal clinic struggling to provide health care to their patients. The film depicts action to control the outbreak of AIDS through treatment, prevention, and education.

More significantly, Rached’s film depicts the shift in consciousness the world needs to combat AIDS. “Thomas and his colleagues go wherever the front line of AIDS prevention and treatment take them: international conferences, high schools where they consult on education programs and getting condom machines installed, universities where they both teach and learn, workshops, as well as their own medical practices,” writes Clarke. “For these doctors, AIDS is a syndrome that raises much more than medical questions. It confronts us with our prejudices and forces us to look at a potent mix of human emotions and frailties around sexuality.

“Rached says her motivations in making films is to feel less alone, to learn from others and to be able to share the lives of her films’ characters, all of whom have something important to say that concerns us all,” Clarke adds. “Her journey into the many realities she has chosen to explore is whole-hearted, intense. Her films are clearly subjective, but never preachy. In fact she doesn’t so much seem to be trying to convince us of a particular point of view as find answers to her own questions.” Read more about the empathy and humanity of the films of Tahani Rached in Pulse of the World and watch Doctors with Heart below.

Doctors with Heart , Tahani Rached, provided by the National Film Board of Canada