Film Screening: Raw Opium: Pain, Pleasure, Profits

The International Harm Reduction Development Program of the Open Society Foundations invites you to the New York premiere of Raw Opium: Pain, Pleasure, Profits.

Raw Opium is a documentary about a commodity that has tremendous power, both to ease pain and to destroy lives. The opium poppy is the raw material for heroin, fueling a vast criminal trade larger than the economies of many countries.

The film takes us on a journey around the world and through time, where conflicting forces battle over the narcotic sap of the opium poppy. We enter the disparate worlds of an opium master in southeast Asia, a UN drug enforcement officer on the border of Afghanistan hunting down the smugglers of central Asia, a former Indian government Drug Czar who encounters the opium farmers of northern India, a Vancouver user struggling to kick the habit, as well as a Canadian doctor and Portuguese street worker who daily confront the realities of drug addiction.

Through their stories and interviews, we see how this flower has played, and continues to play, a pivotal role—not just in the lives of people who grow, manufacture, and use it—but also in the political instability of an increasingly interconnected and turbulent world.

For more about the film, visit

Date: March 22, 2012
Time: 5:308:00 p.m.

OSI-New York

Scott Calbeck, Vanda Felbab-Brown, Peter Findlay, Neill Franklin, Amy Goodman, and Russ Maynard
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