China produces 90% of the world’s consumer electronics. According to official figures, every five hours, a worker is poisoned by the toxic chemicals used to make these products. But the real figure is believed to be much higher.

Shot below the radar over three years, Complicit follows Chinese worker-turned-activist, Yi Yeting, and a group of other worker-activists fighting to improve conditions in the factories. While battling his own work-induced leukemia, Yi Yeting teaches himself labour law in order to prepare a legal challenge against his former employers. He then forms a law co-operative to defend and educate other sick workers.

As well as taking on corrupt officials, the activists infiltrate factories making products for some of the world’s largest brands to secure proof of dangerous working conditions.


  • Year: 2017
  • Duration: 90 & 52 mins
  • Production: Heather White
  • Director: Heather White, Lynn Zhang
  • Available Versions: ENG, FRA
  • Country of production: USA



  • Grand Prize FIFDH Paris 2017 (France); AWFJ EDA Award for Best Female-Directed film at Doxa Documentary Film Festival 2017 (Canada); Special Mention documentary award at Festival del Cinema dei Diritti Umani di Napoli 2017 (Italy); HUMANS FEST! competition winner for Best Feature Documentary & EDAV Prize for Best Development and Investigation (HUMANS FEST! 2018;International Film and Human Rights Festival of Valencia, Spain); Social Media Award (Raw Science Film Festival 2018, USA); Award of Recognition at Hollywood International Independent Documentary Awards, March 2018 Edition (USA); Best Documentary Feature at Workers Unite Film Festival 2018 (New York, USA); Grand Prix for Best International Documentary (Life After Oil Film Festival 2018, ITALY); Human Rights Watch Film Festival 2017 (New York, London, San Diego & Amsterdam), FIFDH Geneva 2017 (Switzerland), TIFF (Canada) , DOXA Documentary Film Festival 2017 (Vancouver, CANADA) , Melbourne Indie Film Festival 2017 (Australia), Solidarity Tel Aviv Human Rights Film Festival 2018 (Israel), Millenium Doc Film festival 2018 (Belgium), Salt Spring Film Festival 2018 (USA), Sedona Arizona Film Festival March 2018 (USA), Docudays UA International Human Rights Documentary Film Festival 2018 (Ukraine), This Human World Festival 2018 (Austria) , Raw Science Film Festival 2018 (USA), ACT Human Rights Film Festival 2018 (USA), Filmmor International Women’s Film Festival in Istanbul 2018 (Turkey), DocEdge Festival 2018 (New Zealand), Seoul International Human Rights Film Festival (South Korea), University of San Francisco Film Festival 2018 (USA), SF DocFest 2018 (USA), Addis Film Festival 2018 (Ethiopia), Friday Harbor Film Festival 2018 (USA), Belfast Cinemagic Film Festival 2018 (UK), Galway Film Fleadh 2018 (Republic of Ireland), San Francisco Green Film Festival 2018 (USA), Another Way Film Festival 2018 (Spain), PROTESTA Festival Intl de Cinema de Critica Social 2018 (Spain), BIFED 2018 (Turkey), Yonkers NY Film Festival 2018 (USA).

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