December 15, 2017 – Wormwood, Director Errol Morris

On November 28th, 1953, mild-mannered military scientist Frank Olson plunged from the window of his 13th-floor New York hotel room and died. His cause of death was described as a “fall or jump” and though many questions remained about the exact circumstances, the case was left unsolved, and Olson’s wife and three young children attempted to move on. Over two decades later, in June of 1975, the Rockefeller Commission issued a comprehensive, high-profile report on myriad illegal CIA activities that featured a passing mention of a 1953 incident in which an army scientist was purposefully drugged with LSD without his knowledge and died from a fall a few days later. This revelation sends the Olson family, led by oldest son Eric, on a decades-long hunt for answers that takes them to the highest corridors of power in the U.S. government and close to some of its darkest secrets. Acclaimed storyteller Errol Morris weaves this mystery into a six-part story exploring the limits of our knowledge about the past and the lengths we’ll go in the search for the truth. Wormwood is the saga of one man’s obsessive, sixty-year quest to identify the real circumstances about his father’s death that tells a hidden history of key events of the second half of the 20th Century. Was Frank’s death an accident? Did he commit suicide after a bad drug trip? Or was he murdered for knowing too much? In Wormwood, Morris connects Frank’s story to the Korean War, mind control experiments, illegal germ warfare, brainwashing, Manchurian candidates, Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and more.

For news and updates go to: netflix.com/wormwood

“Wormwood is more concerned with its intellectual and philosophical musings on the intangibility everything about this case represents, but it comes at the cost of an emotional impact that’s always just beneath the surface.” – Kevin Jagernauth, The Playlist

“With “Wormwood,” Morris reclaims the approach he popularized by employing accomplished performers such as Molly Parker, Tim Blake Nelson, Peter Sarsgaard and Bob Balaban to bridge the gap between fact, presumption and fantasy.” – Lorraine Ali, Los Angeles Times

“Redefining what a documentary can do and be, Morris’ epic proves a tragedy of systemic corruption, personal mania, and the inability to grasp that which one knows exists, but remains just out of reach.” – Nick Schager, The Daily Beast

“heir testimonies unfolds alongside a series of dramatic reenactments that may or may not illustrate the precise nature of the events being described. The result is a documentary-fiction combination like nothing seen before.” – Eric Kohn, IndieWire

“It has an eerie, something-is-happening-here-but-you-don’t-know-what-it-is-do-you-Mr.-Jones vibe that evokes mid-century American cold war paranoia” – Jordan Hoffman, Vanity Fair

December 15, 2017 – For Ahkeem, Co-directors Landon Van Soest (Jeremy S. Levine)

“People been labeling me a bad kid all my life. You don’t have to really do nothing, people just expect it. So you start to expect it of yourself.” – Daje Shelton

Beginning one year before the fatal police shooting of a Black teenager in nearby Ferguson, Missouri, For Ahkeem is the coming-of-age story of Daje Shelton, a Black 17-year-old girl in North St. Louis. She fights for her future as she is placed in an alternative high school and navigates the marginalized neighborhoods, biased criminal justice policies and economic devastation that have set up many Black youth like her to fail.  After she is expelled from her public high school, a juvenile court judge sends Daje to the court-supervised Innovative Concept Academy, which offers her one last chance to earn a diploma. Over two years we watch as Daje struggles to maintain focus in school, attends the funerals of friends killed around her, falls in love with a classmate named Antonio, and navigates a loving-but-tumultuous relationship with her mother. As Antonio is drawn into the criminal justice system and events in Ferguson just four miles from her home seize the national spotlight, Daje learns she is pregnant and must contend with the reality of raising a young Black boy.  Through Daje’s intimate story, For Ahkeem illuminates challenges that many Black teenagers face in America today, and witnesses the strength, resilience, and determination it takes to survive. Co-director Landon Van Soest joins us to talk about his collaboration with co-direct Jeremy S, Levine and their incredibly intimate, troubling and surprisingly hopeful tale.

For news and updates go to: forahkeemfilm.com

Twitter: #forahkeem

Instagram: @for_ahkeem_film

Facebook: @forahkeemfilm

“A special achievement…As close as documentaries come to putting us inside the mind of someone who society easily overlooks.” – RogerEbert.com

“Masterful…shows us the undeniable power of cinema.” – Huffington Post

“One of the most powerful documentaries ever crafted about the current nature of race relations in America.” – Toronto Film Scene

“A bracing story of grit in a world of social injustice.”  – Los Angeles Times

“For Ahkeem is THE millennial documentary on Black girlhood.” – Jet

“Hands-down one of the best documentaries of 2017…essential viewing.” – Under The Radar Mag

“Compelling…a vivid example of the incontrovertible fact that Black lives matter.” – IndieWire

“Incredibly moving.” – Paste Magazine

“A remarkable experience.” – The Knockturnal

December 8, 2017 – Quest, Director Jonathan Olshefski and Producer Sabrina Schmidt Gordon

QUEST is Jonathan Olshefski’s moving chronicle of a close-knit African-American family living in North Philadelphia. Beginning at the dawn of the Obama presidency, the film follows the Raineys: father Christopher “Quest” Rainey, who juggles various jobs to support his family; Christine’s “Ma Quest,” who works at a women’s shelter; Christine’a’s son William, who is undergoing cancer treatment while caring for his baby son; and PJ, Quest and Christine’a’s young daughter. In a neighborhood besieged by inequality and neglect, they nurture a community of hip hop artists in their home music studio. It’s a safe space where all are welcome, but this creative sanctuary can’t always shield them from the strife that grips their neighborhood. Epic in scope, QUEST is a vivid illumination of race and class in America, and a profound testament to love, healing and hope. Filmed with vérité intimacy for almost a decade, QUEST has swept top documentary awards at festivals across the country since it premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival, including the Grand Jury prize at the Full Frame Festival, as well as nominations for Best Documentary at the upcoming Independent Spirit and Cinema Eye awards. Quest will open in New York on Friday, December 8 at the Quad Cinema and in Los Angeles on December 15. Director Jonathan Olshefski and Producer Sabrina Schmidt Gordon join us for a conversation on their beautifully rendered story of  family, race and hope.

For news and updates go to: firstrunfeatures.com – Quest

 

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“[A] superb film. A living, breathing, stunning documentary study of an African-American family in North Philadelphia weathering a tumultuous decade.” – Guy Lodge, Variety

“Class and race intersect meaningfully in the wonderful documentary Quest, a decade-plus labor of love.” – Manohla Dargis, The New York Times

“Recalls Steve James’ Hoop Dreams in both the way it captures people over a long period of a time and in how it finds the profound in the everyday, the universal in the specific.” – Brian Tallerico, RogerEbert.com

“A sweeping and intimate documentary about the struggles of an average American family.” – Jude Dry, Indiewire

“Quest may be one of the most important films about the American experience ever filmed.” – Jason Gorber, POV Magazine

December 8, 2017 – The Rape of Recy Taylor, Director Nancy Buirski

The Rape of Recy Taylor tells the not so-long-ago story of how a 24-year-old black mother and sharecropper, Recy Taylor, was gang raped by six white boys in 1944 Alabama. Common in the Jim Crow South, few women spoke up in fear for their lives. Not Recy Taylor, who bravely identified her rapists. The NAACP sent its chief rape investigator Rosa Parks, who rallied support and triggered an unprecedented outcry for justice.  The Rape of Recy Taylor exposes a legacy of physical abuse of black women and reveals Rosa Parks’ intimate role in Recy Taylor’s story. An attempted rape against Parks was but one inspiration for her ongoing work to find justice for countless women like Taylor. The 1955 bus boycott was an end result, not a beginning.  More and more women are now speaking up after rape. The Rape of Recy Taylor tells the story of black women who spoke up when danger was greatest; it was their noble efforts to take back their bodies that led to the Montgomery Bus Boycott and movements that followed. The 2017 Global March by Women is linked to their courage. From sexual aggression on ‘40s southern streets to today’s college campuses and to the threatened right to choose, it is control of women’s bodies that powered the movement in Recy Taylor’s day and fuels our outrage today. Director Nancy Buirski (By Sidney Lumet, Afternoon of a Faun, The Loving Story) stops by for a conversation on a remarkably prescient and moving story of courage and the struggle to overcome America’s system of institutional injustice.

For news and updates go to The Rape of Recy Taylor film

 

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Social Media

facebook.com/TheRapeofRecyTaylor

twitter.com/RecyTaylorFilm

instagram.com/augustafilms

Screening Friday, December 8 at the Laemmle Monica Theatre in Santa Monica

“The Rape of Recy Taylor combines archival footage, home movies, and “race films” along with current interviews to tell Taylor’s story, which director Nancy Buirski broadens into a larger discussion about gender and race.” – Tricia Olszewski, Washington City Paper

“Forceful family interviews, immersive location visits, letters, testimony and articles from Afr-Am papers bring you into 1944 Alabama night…supported by NAACP’s Rosa Parks.” – Nora Lee Mandel, FF2 Media

“Buirski’s weaving together of material is most impactful in these mid-feature scenes, unspooling a rich and horrifying world that goes far beyond just Taylor’s experiences.” – Kate Erbland, IndieWire

“With lucidity and deep feeling, Nancy Buirski’s documentary maps an ugly trail of injustice and then widens its lens to pay tribute to the women of color whose refusal to be silent helped drive the evolution of the Civil Rights movement.” – David Rooney, Hollywood Reporter

December 8, 2017 – Naples ’44, Director Francesco Patierno, Producers Francesca Barra and Davide Azzolini

In 1943 a young British officer, Norman Lewis, entered a war-torn Naples with the American Fifth Army. Lewis began writing in his notepad everything that happened to him during his one-year stay observing the complex social cauldron of a city that contrived every day the most incredible ways of fighting to survive. These notes turned into the masterpiece NAPLES ‘44. This film adaptation imagines Lewis returning to the city that charmed and seduced him many years later. Filmmaker Francesco Patierno combines riveting archival war footage with clips from movies set in Naples from the 1950s and 60s (featuring Marcello Mastroianni, Alan Arkin, Ernest Borgnine) and the voice of Oscar-nominated actor Benedict Cumberbatch to portray a city that was as much a victim of the war as any individual, but that has come back to life with all the charisma of Vesuvius, its very own volcano. This visionary reminiscence is made up of flashbacks between the places of the present that Lewis revisits and the stories of the past. Cumberbatch gives life to Lewis’ words through the stories and fortunes of the people he meets, by the end of this intimate nostalgic journey we can fully share with him a deep feeling for the city. Director Francesco Patierno and Producers Francesca Barra and Davide Azzolini stop by to talk about this stunning, intimate evocation of a time and place from the not-too-distant past that has much to teach us today.

For the latest on Naples ’44 go to: Naples ’44 at First Run Features

Naples ’44 opens Friday, December 8 at the Laemmle Monica in Santa Monica

 

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“A riveting film, a complex portrait of the mystery of Naples.” – Corriere della Sera

“If it weren’t for the time-chiseled patina on the footage dug out from archives, the powerful images of Vesuvius erupting, or the Caravaggio-esque faces of the faithful praying, there really wouldn’t be much difference between the Naples of this time and the cities martyred by the conflicts of today, like Aleppo, like Mosul.” – Il Mattino

“Magnificent. (An) elegant, moving, balanced war diary.” – Il Foglio

“Naples ’44 is a harrowing portrait of a defiant population which after suffering great losses, finally drove out its Nazi occupiers, and did survive.” Patrick McGrath, New York

December 1, 2017 – What Happened in Vegas, Director Ramsey Denison

When TV editor Ramsey Denison was jailed for simply reporting police brutality on the Las Vegas strip, he was inspired to investigate the Las Vegas Police Department. His investigation would lead him right up to the biggest mass shooting in American history. In this damning exposé, he reveals that the police know more than they are letting on about what really happened at the Mandalay Bay Resort, where 59 people were killed. Uncovering a long legacy of cavalier methods and dire consequences, civilian fatalities, unconstitutional arrests and embellished crime reports, this doc paints an incriminating picture of a police department where the officers are above the law.

By Director Ramsey Denison: When I drove into Vegas a couple years ago, making a documentary about police corruption was the furthest thing from my mind; I’d come to relax. I’d just finished editing a programme about cops tracking down bad guys – the notion that cops could be the bad guys was not something I’d spent much time thinking about. That all changed when my friend Rhett Nielson and I saw police officers torturing a stranger. I called 911 and reported the incident. A couple minutes later, I got beat up, arrested, and thrown in jail by those same cops. I reported officers Mark Belanger, Kyle Frett, and Jared Casper but LVMPD’s Internal Affairs department decided to do nothing about it. Officer Cole Erskine’s police report was full of fiction, written to justify the brutality. The club where my arrest occurred told me they had no footage because their cameras weren’t recording that night. Without video, it was three police officers’ words against mine and Rhett’s. In a town where you can get beaten up, arrested, and thrown in jail simply for making a phone call to report police brutality, I couldn’t help but wonder what else the LVMPD has done. I discovered that behind the glittering lights, the real Las Vegas is a rigged game of corrupt policing and institutional cover ups.”

For news and updates go to: what-happened-in-vegas

 

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“The problems Denison uncovers serve as a warning to all Americans.” – Daphne Howland, Village Voice

“A documentary profile that blows the whistle on a disturbing pattern of excessive force and corruption within its ranks.” – Michael Rechtshaffen, Los Angeles Times

“Effective despite some storytelling flaws, the documentary is nonetheless unlikely to draw too much attention on the national stage, with fresher outrages never hard to come by.” – John DeFore, Hollywood Reporter

November 17, 2017 – LA 92, Co-directors T.J. Martin and Dan Lindsay

On April 29, 1992, the streets and neighborhoods of Los Angeles, California started to burn just after the Rodney King verdict was announced where four white police officers caught on videotape brutally beating an unarmed black motorist (King) were acquitted of assault by a predominantly white Simi Valley jury. Violent protests, looting and arson lasted several days and left more than 50 people dead. Twenty-five years later, the acclaimed documentary LA 92  from Oscar® winning directors Daniel Lindsay and T.J. Martin (UNDEFEATED) explores the events leading to the violence, as well as the chaos and destruction that happened. LA 92  presents an incredibly immersive and affecting experience of a city in turmoil, without any talking heads or narration, which eerily resembles the same news stories we see on TV today in 2017. The filmmakers spent over a year searching and sifting through over 1700 hours of footage from news reports, journalists’ stories and news archives. Told entirely only through these stunning news reports and images and rarely seen archive footage, this gripping film captures the shock, disappointment and fury felt by many Angelenos, particularly those in the African American community. In the case of the King beating, it was the first time the kind of abuse many had witnessed or experienced at the hands of LAPD officers was recorded and broadcast for the world to see, leaving some with the sense that if justice did not prevail despite such graphic evidence, it never would. Named by Variety as one of the best films of 2017, LA 92 is more than a moment in time, it’s an illuminating political, cultural and social experience that elevates our collective understanding of our history and ourselves. Co-directors T.J. Martin and Daniel Lindsay join us. 

For news and updates go to: channel.nationalgeographic.com/la-92

 

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“..not just a defining work on the riots and a wrenching visual essay on power, race, media, and mob violence in the modern era, but also one of the year’s best documentaries.” – Chris Barsanti, The Playlist

“The results are visceral, scary, and infuriating all over again, a true miscarriage of justice that turned into a civil uprising that asked more questions than it answered.” – Jason Bailey, Flavorwire

“An immersive, you-are-there experience that is as dramatic (or more so) as any Hollywood feature film.” – G. Allen Johnson, San Francisco Chronicle

“Gives a full sense of the anarchy and rage of the post-King verdict days, thrusting us fully and disturbingly into events in very much of a You Are There manner.” – Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times

November 24, 2017 – A Gray State, Director Erik Nelson

In 2010 David Crowley, an Iraq veteran, aspiring filmmaker and charismatic up-and-coming voice in fringe politics, began production on his film “Gray State.” Set in a dystopian near-future where civil liberties are trampled by an unrestrained federal government, the film’s crowd funded trailer was enthusiastically received by the burgeoning online community of libertarians, Tea Party activists as well as members of the nascent alt-right. In January of 2015, Crowley was found dead with his family in their suburban Minnesota home. Their shocking deaths quickly become a cause célèbre for conspiracy theorists who speculate that Crowley was assassinated by a shadowy government concerned about a film and filmmaker that was getting too close to the truth about their aims. Directed by “Grizzly Man” producer Erik Nelson and Executive Produced by Werner Herzog, “A Gray State” combs through Crowley’s archive of 13,000 photographs, hundreds of hours of home video, and exhaustive behind-the-scenes footage of David’s work in progress to reveal what happens when a paranoid view of the government turns inward — blurring the lines of what is real and what people want to believe. Director Erik Nelson joins us to talk about his verite-style film and the truth behind the Crowley family’s tragic deaths.

For news and updates go to: firstrunfeatures.com/agraystate

 

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Opening Los Angeles November 24th at the Laemmle’s Music Hall 3

“A highly-topical and resonant trip down the alt-right rabbit hole…A GRAY STATE offers a powerful rebuke to the post-truth groups that subsumed both Crowley’s life and his death” Anthony Kaufman, SCREEN DAILY        

“Part suspenseful murder-mystery and part real-life political thriller, this true-crime deep-dive feels poised to be a…breakout hit ” Jason Newman, ROLLING STONE        

“The somewhat rare documentary that’s actually as illuminating as good print reporting on the same case.” – Alan Scherstuhl, Village Voice

“A story similar to “The Shining” but much scarier because it is true.” – Louis Proyect, COUNTERPUNCH 

“[A] real-life tale that’s as unsettling as it is precisely of-the-moment.” – Godfrey Cheshire, ROGER EBERT

November 24, 2017 – Strad Style, Director Stefan Avalos

It’s a story that beggars belief—a bipolar practitioner of “candle magick” living in a dilapidated farmhouse in rural Ohio with a lifelong obsession for building violins (and covered in tattoos of master builders such as Stradivarius) convinces a world-renowned soloist via social media that he is capable of creating a perfect replica of the world’s most valuable violin, Guarneri’s Il Cannone. A quirky look into one man’s DIY enthusiasm and perseverance when facing down a self-created, impossible task, Strad Style is the feel-good doc of 2017. Stefan Avalos is a filmmaker based in Los Angeles. Having started his life as a classically trained violinist and knowing the obsessions that are part of the violin-world, he became intrigued with the story of Daniel Houck, while working on a broader documentary about New vs old violins. While this movie is still in process, “Strad Style” emerged as a story that became HIS obsession. Stefan joins us to talk about the making of this magical documentary.

For news and updates go to: stradstyle.com

 

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“One of Slamdance 2017’s documentary treasures, Strad Style is as deeply heartfelt as it is riveting.” – Kathy Zhou, Slugmag

“- irresistible, way-stranger-than-fiction documentary” – Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times

I LOVED LOVED LOVED Strad Style and have not been able to stop recommending it to anyone who will listen. – MoviePro

“a beautifully shot shaggy-dog story with an overcoming-adversity theme and fairy-tale outcome Hollywood would kill for, which leaves audiences applauding through tears.” – Adam Patterson, Film Pulse

“Wonderful; so funny and strange and human. An amazing portrait of a fascinating character, beautifully told with enormous suspense and tenderness.” – Mary Ann Johanson, Film Filosopher

November 10, 2017 – Mr. Fish: Cartooning From the Deep End, Director Pablo Bryant

Provocative, funny, intelligent and fiercely political, audiences had better be ready to dive in for the new documentary feature MR. FISH: CARTOONING FROM THE DEEP END. Directed by Pablo Bryant, will have its NYC Premiere at the DOC NYC 2017. In this documentary we discover the dangerously funny cartoonist Mr. Fish, struggling to make a living in an industry that is dying out. In a world where consumerism is king, and opportunities are few, will this uncensored artist find a way to sell his art, or be forced to sell himself out?  After a rousing, standing ovation laden World premiere, comes word that director Pablo Bryant’s MR. FISH: CARTOONING FROM THE DEEP END has won the 2017 Hiscox Audience Award for Best documentary at at the Austin Film Festival. Director Pablo Bryant joins us for a lively conversation on free speech, our political culture, and the artistic sensibilities of today’s most scathing and insightful political satirist.

For news and updates go to: mrfishmovie.com

Check out Mr. Fish’s art at: mrfishmovie.com/gallery

 

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Screening times:

Sun., Nov. 12, 2017, 4:30 PM – Cinepolis Chelsea Cinemas

Mon., Nov. 13, 2017, 10:15 am – IFC Center

November 10, 2017 – What Haunts Us, Director Paige Goldberg Tolmach

WHAT HAUNTS US tells the real story behind the town that remained silent but the outcome was that of suicide by the victims.  This film is a cautionary tale for parents and their children and a horrifying example of what happens when one stays quiet about sexual abuse/molestation. WHAT HAUNTS US tells the story about  the 1997 class of Porter Gaud High School in Charleston, South Carolina that graduated 49 boys. Within the last 35 years, six of these boys committed suicide. Filmmaker Tolmach graduated from Porter Gaud, and now she digs deep with this film in discovering the dark secrets that have lingered and haunted this community that she so loves.  The six boys that committed suicide featured in the film didn’t have to die if they would have spoken out and not remained quiet about what had happened to them.  However, the shame associated with this nightmare often weighs more on the victims – only to keep them silent. WHAT HAUNTS US is not a new story, but it is the continuing common tale of sexual abuse, molestation, shame and a community’s silence so that “no one rocks the boat” rings all too true to this day. Until, we as concerned people speak up, these crimes against innocent victims will continue. Director Paige Goldberg Tolmach joins us to talk about an all to familiar tale that haunts the lives of former students of a prestiges prep school.

For news and updates go to: whathauntsusfilm.com

facebook.com/whathauntsus

 

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WHAT HAUNTS US will screen at DOC NYC on Monday, 11/13! 

November 3, 2017, – A River Below, Director Mark Grieco

A documentary as dramatic, ambiguous, and multilayered as any fiction film, A RIVER BELOW examines the efforts of two conservationists in the Amazon to bring about change by using the national media, only to discover the consequences of their actions come with a high price. A RIVER BELOW provides an eye-opening look at what happens when passion and opinion trump reason and morality. The crux of the story questions the truth in images, its manipulation to get the public’s attention and, ultimately, who pays the price for someone else’s passion for radical change.

Director Statement – “A RIVER BELOW explores these ideas and moral questions, but ultimately it is the story about the massacre of this incredible dolphin, the people out there trying to save them, and the ethical dilemmas we face with what must be done to achieve sudden change. There is no doubt that we are living in an extinction crisis and there is very little time left to save certain species – that is the view of the river from above. My hope is that this film will take audiences on the plunge to ask, “Who do we want out there saving in our name and at what long-term cost?” It is a mirror held up to the documentary and a journey into ourselves as we attempt to better this messy world.”Mark Grieco

facebook.com/ARiverBelow

 

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100% Rotten Tomatoes

“The truth turns into a tangled mess in “A River Below,” a bold and urgent documentary whose seemingly straightforward story quickly runs awry.” – Ken Jaworowski

“Díaz’s sublime cinematography and the way Grieco teases out the knotty narrative make for a haunting exploration of an ethical morass, where vilification is easy, but deconstructing power much more difficult.” – Daphne Howland, Village Voice

“[It] is pure investigative journalism. It trusts no one and questions every side of the story — even the possible coercion of illegal activities by one of its stars while those he coerced have threatened to shoot him in the head if he ever turns up again” – Jacob Oller, Paste Magazine

“The film’s moral argument sets it apart from films like Blackfish – this is more or less an investigation into an investigation.” John Fink, The Film Stage

October 27, 2017 – The Work, Director Jairus McLeary

The riveting documentary THE WORK, set inside a single room in Folsom Prison, follows three men from outside as they participate in a four-day group therapy retreat with level-four convicts. Over the four days, each man in the room takes his turn at delving deep into his past. The raw and revealing process that the incarcerated men undertake exceeds the expectations of the free men, ripping them out of their comfort zones and forcing them to see themselves and the prisoners in unexpected ways. THE WORK offers a powerful and rare look past the cinder block walls, steel doors and the dehumanizing tropes in our culture to reveal a movement of change and redemption that transcends what we think of as rehabilitation. Director Jairus McLeary joins us to talk about the men, inmates and outsiders, the program and the challenges of making a film about men seeking to reclaim their lives.

For news and updates go to: theworkmovie.com

For news and doing your part to continue The Work go to: insidecircle.org

 

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Starting October 27 The Work opens at the Laemmle Monica Center in Los Angeles / Santa Monica 

“A simple, tense, gritty auditing of a collective unburdening that obviously brings some needed clarity, and the promise of rehabilitation, to some hurt, searching souls.” – Robert Abele, TheWrap

In its visceral purity, the film drags male toxicity up into the light, offering it as a cure for itself. – Chuck Bowen, Slant Magazine

The Work makes gruelling viewing at times – it’s more like psychotherapy than entertainment – but, by the end, viewers will feel as if they’ve been on the same rewarding journey as the subjects. – Geoffrey McNab, Independent (UK)

“The Work chronicles a kind of breakneck psychoanalysis in which the origins of problematic behavior are dramatically expunged in public.” – Eric Kohn, IndieWire

“No filmmaker could have written a richer set of masculine archetypes as these real individuals represent, each equally totemic in his defining idiosyncrasies and in his historically male characteristics.” – Sean L. Malin, Austin Chronicle

October 27, 2017 – Joan Didion: The Center Will Not Hold, Director Griffin Dunne

Across more than 50 years of essays, novels, screenplays, and criticism, Joan Didion has been our premier chronicler of the ebb and flow of America’s cultural and political tides with observations on her personal – and our own – upheavals, downturns, life changes, and states of mind. In the intimate, extraordinary documentary JOAN DIDION: THE CENTER WILL NOT HOLD, actor and director Griffin Dunne unearths a treasure trove of archival footage and talks at length to his “Aunt Joan” about the eras she covered and the eventful life she’s lived, including partying with Janis Joplin in a house full of L.A. rockers; hanging in a recording studio with Jim Morrison; and cooking dinner for one of Charles Manson’s women for a magazine story. Didion guides us through the sleek literati scene of New York in the 1950s and early ’60s, when she wrote for Vogue; her return to her home state of California for two turbulent decades; the writing of her seminal books, including Slouching Towards Bethlehem, Play It as It Lays, A Book of Common Prayer, and The White Album; her film scripts, including The Panic in Needle Park; her view of 1980s and ’90s political personalities; and the meeting of minds that was her long marriage to writer John Gregory Dunne. She reflects on writing about her reckoning with grief after Dunne’s death, in The Year of Magical Thinking (winner of the National Book Award for Nonfiction), and the death of their daughter Quintana Roo, in Blue Nights. With commentary from friends and collaborators including Vanessa Redgrave, Harrison Ford, Anna Wintour, David Hare, Calvin Trillin, Hilton Als, and Susanna Moore, the most crucial voice belongs to Didion, one of the most influential American writers alive today. Director Griffin Dunne (American Werewolf in London, After Hours) joins us for a conversation on “Aunt Joan” and her fiercely personal body of remarkable body of fiction and non-fiction.

To view Joan Didion: The Center Will Not Hold go to: netflix.com

 

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“Access is almost everything for a documentary filmmaker, and the entree Griffin Dunne had to his celebrated subject makes all the difference in “Joan Didion: The Center Will Not Hold.” – Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times

“A documentary that’s incisive and haunting, like Didion’s best writing.” – Owen Gleiberman, Variety

“This is an intensive appreciation of perhaps the greatest living American essayist, and one of the best ever. It plays like a finely tuned authorized biography.” – Chris Vognar, Dallas Morning News

October 27, 2017 – International Documentary Association (IDA) Executive Director, Simon Kilmurry

International Documentary Association (IDA) is fiercely committed to protecting and defending the rights of documentary filmmakers to practice their craft, seek and reveal truth in their films, and make and sell their work freely in a fair marketplace. We strenuously uphold the principles of free speech and believe that documentary films, however provocative they may be, should never be silenced by an authority, corporation or legal system that may feel threatened by their content. Where filmmakers are under fire, and their predicament stands to set precedent for us all, the IDA brings together the weight of our community to fight for their rights in the courts, the press, congress or wherever that threat may lie. IDA is the only group advocating specifically for the documentary filmmaking community. In many ways, this makes IDA’s advocacy work the most important and relevant work we do. If documentary films better inform your world, if you believe in freedom of speech, if you are concerned that the media space grows ever smaller and cherish the diversity that independent voices bring, and if you’re a fan of David (over Goliath) then you probably share our values. Documentary storytelling expands our understanding of shared human experience, fostering an informed, compassionate, and connected world. The International Documentary Association (IDA) is dedicated to building and serving the needs of a thriving documentary culture. Through its programs, the IDA provides resources, creates community, and defends rights and freedoms for documentary artists, activists, and journalists. Executive Director Simon Kilmurry joins us to talk about IDA, the screening series currently underway and the state of documentary filmmaking in 2017.

 

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For news and updates go to: documentary.org

Watch some of the year’s best film through the IDA’s documentary screening series

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October 20, 2017 – One of Us, Co-directors Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady

In their new documentary ONE OF US, acclaimed observational filmmakers Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady (JESUS CAMP, DETROPIA) take a deep and moving look at the lives of three individuals who have chosen to leave the hugely insular world of Hasidic Judaism. The film follows Etty, a mother of seven, as she decides to leave a violent marriage and divorce her husband; Ari, a teenager on the verge of manhood who is struggling with addiction and the effects of childhood abuse; and Luzer, an actor who, despite having found success in the secular world, still wrestles with his decision eight years earlier to leave the Hasidic community. Produced over three years, ONE OF US offers unique and intimate access to the lives of all three as they deal not only with questions of their beliefs but also with the consequences of leaving the only community they have ever known. With their trademark sensitivity and keen interest in the nature of faith, Ewing and Grady chronicle these journeys towards personal freedom that comes at a very high cost. Co-directors Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady join us for a conversation on their emotionally wrenching look into a world of dogmatism, ostracism and community.

Directors’ Statement – We have always been drawn to stories that put the nature/nurture debate into stark relief. Are some of us just born with an unshakable need to question the status quo, despite the consequences? The three main subjects of One of Us are jumping head first into the unknown.  Their rocky journey from insular Hasidic Brooklyn out into the secular world – with its emphasis on radical individualism – is fraught with both doubt and exhilaration. These three brave people are bucking the exacting rules of their ultra-orthodox community to experience the world for the first time as true individuals. Their journey is a profoundly human one that took us by surprise. One of Us is the most thought-provoking film we’ve ever made. We are excited to hear audiences weigh in on the vexing question of what price we’re all willing to pay to forge our own identity.

One of Us is available on Netflix

To find out more about the films of Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing go to: lokifilms.com

facebook.com/One-of-Us-Film

 

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“It’s incisive in its condemnation of the oppression innate in the social structure of Brooklyn’s Hasidic communities.” – Christopher Gray, Slant Magazine

“Employing intimate, evocative aesthetics to amplify their material’s heart-wrenching power, the filmmakers craft a harrowing portrait of trauma, bravery and insular societal oppression.”Nick Schager, Variety

“Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady have made their most powerful and complex film.” – Sheri Linden, The Hollywood Reporter

October 20, 2017 – The Departure, Director Lana Wilson

THE DEPARTURE, Lana Wilson’s (After Tiller) poetic and deeply moving look at a former punk-turned-Buddhist priest in Japan who has made a career out of helping suicidal people find reasons to live. One of the discoveries of the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival and featured at some of the world’s top documentary festivals, THE DEPARTURE follows a 44-year-old Tokyo native, Ittetsu Nemoto loves riding his motorcycle and dancing all night in clubs. But he’s also a Rinzai Zen priest, who lives with his wife, mother and baby son at a temple in the remote countryside of Gifu prefecture, Japan. There, over the last ten years, he has become famous for his work in combating suicide. But this work has come increasingly at the cost of his own family and health, as he refuses to draw lines between the people he counsels and himself. With astonishing access and artistry, Wilson’s camera captures Nemoto at a crossroads, when his growing self-destructive tendencies lead him to confront the same question his patients ask him: what makes life worth living? Director Lana Wilson (After Tiller) joins us for a conversation about death, love, priorities and family.

For news and updates go to: thedeparturefilm.com

 

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The Departure opens in Los Angeles at Laemmle’s Monica Film Center on Friday, October 20 with other cities to follow.

“A beautiful, wise, and deeply empathetic immersion into one fascinating character’s unique approach to suicide prevention. A quietly impressive work whose images, characters, and ruminations linger on long after the lights come up.” – Scott Macaulay, Filmmaker Magazine

 “An intimate, deeply felt engagement with profound matters of life and death.” – Allan Hunter, Screen International

“Immensely moving. Lyrical and deeply meditative… digs deep into major questions without being afraid of the answers.” – Kate Erbland, Indiewire

“Incredible. A portrait of unbelievable humanity.” – Nick Allen, Nick Allen, RogerEbert.com

 “A poetic meditation on what it means to be human and what it means to be alive.” – Helen Kaplow, Indie NYC

“Nemoto’s teaching is as much about embracing life as it is about facing death.
He offers hope for all.” – Joan Oliver Duncan, Tricycle Magazine

DINA, co-directors Antonio Santini and Dan Sickle and film subject Dina

DINA, an outspoken and eccentric 49-year-old in suburban Philadelphia, invites her fiancé Scott, a Walmart door greeter, to move in with her. Having grown up neurologically diverse in a world blind to the value of their experience, the two are head-over-heels for one another, but shacking up poses a new challenge. Getting married in a few weeks and there’s still so much to do. She has to move her boyfriend, Scott, from his parents’ house to her apartment, and settle him in to only the second home he’s ever had, all while juggling his schedule as an early morning Walmart door greeter. She has to get her dress, confirm arrangements with the venue, and make peace with her family, who remain nervous for their beloved DINA, after the death of her first husband and the string of troubled relationships that followed. Throughout it all, in the face of obstacles large and small, DINA, remains indomitable. She’s overcome tragedy and found the man she wants and is bent on building the life for herself that she believes she deserves. DINA captures the cadences and candid conversations of a relationship that reexamines the notion of love on-screen. DINA is unstoppable, a force of nature, and as the star of her own life story, she’s an unconventional movie protagonist the likes of which hasn’t been seen before. Co-directors Antonio Santini and Dan Sickle join us to talk about their empathetic, moving and enveloping documentary.

For news and updates go to: dina.film

facebook.com/TheDinaMovie

 

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**Winner – Grand Jury Prize – US Documentary – 2017 Sundance Film Festival

“DINA comes from a deep place of love…Alternately comic and tragic and best when its both at once, DINA humanizes a world of people who were only dehumanized because we allowed them to be… Whereas most docs about ‘different’ people are content to flatter our empathy, DINA aims to deepen it.” – David Ehrlich, IndieWire 

“We come to understand that the camera’s distance from its subjects as an act of respect that allows the complex, funny, and indomitable personalities to shine through.” – Christopher Gray, Slant Magazine

“A sensitive snapshot of two ordinary people on the autism spectrum who are determined to carve out a meaningful future together.” – David Rooney, Hollywood Reporter

“The rapport between the filmmakers and their principal characters is so comfortable, it occasionally feels as if we are watching a scripted film.” – Peter DeBruge, Variety

UNREST, Director Jennifer Brea

Jennifer Brea is a Harvard PhD student soon to be engaged to the love of her life when she’s struck down by a mysterious fever that leaves her bedridden. She becomes progressively more ill, eventually losing the ability even to sit in a wheelchair, but doctors tell her it’s “all in her head.” Unable to convey the seriousness and depth of her symptoms to her doctor, Jennifer begins a video diary on her iPhone that eventually becomes the feature documentary film Unrest.  Once Jennifer is diagnosed with myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME), commonly called chronic fatigue syndrome, she and her new husband, Omar, are left to grapple with how to live in the face of a lifelong illness. Refusing to accept the limitations of bedbound life, Jennifer goes on an inspiring virtual voyage around the world where she finds a hidden community of millions confined to their homes and bedrooms by ME. These patients use the internet, Skype and Facebook to connect to each other — and to offer support and understanding. Many ME patients have experienced uncertainty, confusion and even disbelief from the medical community and society as a whole. After all, it’s easy to ignore a disease when patients are too sick to leave their homes. In Unrest, Jennifer shares her pain and the most intimate moments of her life in order to offer hope and visibility to those who suffer alone in dark, silent rooms. Though Jennifer and Omar may have to accept that they will never live the life they originally dreamed about, together they find resilience, strength, and meaning in their community and each other. Director, subject and activist Jennifer Brea joins us to talk about her journey, illness and her determination to make things better for people living with ME.

For news and updates go to: unrest.film

Help raise awareness and take action, go to: unrest.film/time-for-unrest

facebook.com/unrestfilm

 

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“The movie delivers a striking degree of emotional authenticity with its home footage, allowing it to become more about its central couple’s resilience than the hardships that tests their bond.” – Eric Kohn, IndieWire

“It powerfully insists on giving a voice to victims whose greatest challenge, apart from their symptoms, is surmounting a world of indifference.” – Daniel M. Gold, New York Times

“It’s a film that’s remarkably intimate, deeply edifying and a stirring call to action.” – Katie Walsh, Los Angeles Times

“Brea shot much of the film on her iPhone, which often gives it the tone of a found-footage horror film. Making it all the more horrifying is the fact that not only is it real, but it’s while Brea is unable to stand up or often even move beyond crawling.” – SF Weekly

I Am Another You, Director Nanfu Wang

When Chinese filmmaker Nanfu Wang (Hooligan Sparrow) first came to America, Florida seemed like an exotic frontier full of theme parks, prehistoric swamp creatures, and sunburned denizens. As she travels wide-eyed from one city to another, she eventually encounters a charismatic young drifter named Dylan. Fascinated by his rejection of society’s rules and unsure of his past, Nanfu follows Dylan with her camera on a journey that spans years, takes her across America, and explores the meaning of freedom. But as Nanfu delves deeper into Dylan’s world, she discovers something that calls her entire worldview into question. Director, Producer, Cinematographer & Editor Nanfu Wang is an award-winning filmmaker based in New York City. Her feature debut Hooligan Sparrow was shortlisted for the 2017 Academy Award for best documentary feature. Since its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival 2016, Hooligan Sparrow has screened at more than 100 festivals in over 25 countries including Hot Docs, Sheffield, Full Frame, and Human Rights Watch Film Fest. It opened theatrically across North America and was later released on POV, Netflix, Amazon, and iTunes. It has won over twenty awards internationally including a Cinema Eye Honor for the Best Debut Film, the George Polk Award for the journalistic achievement, and the Truer than Fiction Award at the Independent Spirit Awards. Wang was honored by the International Documentary Association with the 2016 Emerging Filmmaker Award. Director Nanfu Wang joins us to talk about Dylan, freedom, travel and her own experience on the streets.

For news and updates go to: iamanotheryoufilm.com

facebook.com/iamanotheryoufilm

 

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Opens in Los Angeles October 6, 2017 at Laemmle Monica Film Center 1332 2nd St. Santa Monica, CA 90401

100% on Rotten Tomatoes

Awards:

Winner: SXSW LUNA Chicken & Egg Award for Best Documentary Feature directed by a woman

Winner: SXSW Special Jury Award for Excellence in Documentary Storytelling 

“Cinematic Poetry” – The Hollywood Reporter
“Intimate…eye opening” – Screen International

An excellent, intuitive study of American wanderlust. – Alan Scherstuhl, Village Voice

“‘I Am Another You’ poses tricky questions about the relationship between filmmaker and subject, and maybe between filmmaker and audience.” – Ben Kenigsberg

“What begins as a celebration of reckless freedom, then turns into a revelation of a broken soul, becomes something deeper …” – Owen Gleiberman, Variety

The Pathological Optimist, Director Miranda Bailey

Who is the man behind the most highly controversial, intensely debated topics in modern medicine? In THE PATHOLOGICAL OPTIMIST, director Miranda Bailey brings us a character study of Dr. Andrew Wakefield, one of 13 co-authors of a notorious 1998 paper in the UK medical Journal The Lancet, but who became the very public face of what has come to be known as “The Anti-Vax Movement.” An expat from Britain who currently resides in Austin, Texas, Wakefield allowed Bailey and her team to follow him and his family for five years beginning in 2011 as he fought a defamation battle in the courts against the British Medical Journal and journalist Brian Deer. The results of that case – and the self-reflection, pronouncements, and observations of Wakefield, his legal team, wife, and his children – create a complex and incisive look at one of our era’s most fear-provoking and continuously provocative figures. THE PATHOLOGICAL OPTIMIST takes no sides, instead letting Wakefield and the battles he fought speak for themselves. Director Miranda Bailey joins us to talk about her riveting portrait of a man driven to prove his detractors wrong.

Director’s statement: “I gravitate towards provocative and discussion-making material for most of my films. When I began this journey in 2010, Andrew Wakefield was much less known in the United States than he is now. But those who did know him seemed to have very strong feelings either for or against him. I was curious as to who he was and how he could stand up to such rejection from his peers and such scrutiny in the media regarding his part in the MMR Scandal. As the style of my film evolved, I decided it was not my place to defend Andrew Wakefield, nor was it to condemn him. My interest lies in observance. I asked questions and observed. It is up to the audience to decide what they see. ”

For news and updates got to: The Pathological Optimistfilm.com

facebook.com/ThePathologicalOptimist

 

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October 6 & 7

The Laemmle Monica Film Center – After the 7:20 pm showings with director Miranda Bailey & Dr. Andrew Wakefield

October 8 –The Laemmle Monica Film Center

After the 2:20 pm showing with director Miranda Bailey & Dr. Andrew Wakefield

“Regardless of where you stand on the vaccination issue, it’s possible to relish Miranda Bailey’s highly informative, anger-arousing film, and to feel it’s promoting your own views.” – Lisa Jo Sagolia. Film Journal International

“The controversy over vaccinations will rage on and this cinematic portrait will merely be a footnote. But it proves a compelling one, however you may feel about the burning issue.” – Frank Scheck, Hollywood Reporter

Cadillac Tramps: Life on the Edge, Director Jamie Sims Coakley

The 1990’s were the “Golden Age” of the Orange County California music scene. Bands like The Offspring, No Doubt, Sugar Ray and Social Distortion where blowing up the mainstream and selling millions of records around the world.  Meanwhile, the undisputed kings of the O.C. scene, The Cadillac Tramps, were falling apart.  Infighting, addiction, frustration and dysfunction would tear the band apart at the peak of their success, but their bond would prove too strong to remain broken for long. THE CADILLAC TRAMPS: LIFE ON THE EDGE  is a humble, honest and entertaining look at five young men who found each other in sobriety, created a lasting musical legacy that influenced indie rock’s biggest bands, and overcame the past to support lead singer Michael “Gabby” Gaborno as he fights for his life from the ravages of Hep-C. First time filmmaker, Jamie Sims Coakley, expertly mixes a colorful combination of archival footage, insightful artist interviews and intimate vérité footage together into an arresting, heartwarming and cautionary tale of brotherhood, reflection and the power of music to heal and unite us. Director Jamie Sims Coakley joins us  to talk about the music, the what ifs, and the bond that has been their musical journey.

For news and updates go to: cadillactrampsdocumentary.com

facebook.com/cadillactramps

 

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Tuesday, October 10th 2017 – 7:30pm

Official Premiere with Q&A with Director Jamie Sims Coakley and members of The Cadillac Tramps.

Special Memorabilia Give-Aways!

The Downtown Independent Theater, Los Angeles California 

Click here for limited tickets:

Limit Run @ Downtown Independent, DTLA 

October 11th – October 16th – Various Times

Enjoy the story of The Cadillac Tramps on the big screen! 

The Downtown Independent Theater, Los Angeles California

Click Here for tickets:

Motherland, Director Ramona Diaz

MOTHERLAND takes us into the heart of the planet’s busiest maternity hospital in one of the world’s poorest and most populous countries: the Philippines. The film’s viewer, like an unseen outsider dropped unobtrusively into the hospital’s stream of activity, passes through hallways, enters rooms and listens in on conversations. At first, the surrounding people are strangers, but as the film continues, it’s absorbingly intimate, rendering the women at the heart of the story increasingly familiar. In a hospital that is literally bursting with life, we witness the miracle and wonder of the human condition. Diaz, a veteran documentarian began filming in the search of a story on reproductive justice, visited the Dr. Jose Fabella Memorial Hospital in Manila, Philippines.  As the busiest maternity ward in the world, it averages 60 births a day—and at its peak, as many as 100 babies within a 24-hour period.  Fabella Hospital is the final safety net for very poor pregnant women, most of whom cannot afford either contraception or the $60 delivery fee.  Immersing the viewer with a fly on the wall cinema verité approach,” MOTHERLAND –  winner of World Cinema Documentary Special Jury Award for Commanding Vision at Sundance will open on September 22 in Los Angeles at the Laemmle Monica Film Center. Director Ramona Diaz stops by to talk about her immersive, intimate film that finds intimacy and caring in the midst of controlled bedlam.

For news and updates go to: motherland-film.com

 

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Opens Friday, September 22nd at the LAEMMLE MONICA FILM CENTER 

MOTHERLAND director Ramona Diaz will participate in brief Q&A’s opening weekend at the Monica Film Center: FRIDAY, 9/22, 7:30 PM screening; SATURDAY, 9/23, 5 PM and 7:30 PM screenings; SUNDAY, 9/24, 2:30 and 5 PM screenings.

“Engaging, intimate and full of life” – Film School Rejects

“A remarkable work of documentary storytelling, raw, intimate and subsequently quite profound” – Hammer to Nail

“Explores issues with an emphatically compassionate approach.” – FilmJournal

“…recalls the observational techniques and insights of the films of Frederick Wiseman.” – Village Voice

“Diaz masterfully captures the Fabella Memorial Hospital and a number of immediately engaging subjects, guiding audiences into their world and experiences of motherhood so completely that it almost feels as if they’ve been watching a continuing series for several seasons.” – Whatnottodoc

“Motherland” is an extraordinary vérité portrait of Manila’s Fabella Hospital, where an average of 60 babies are born daily, making it the busiest maternity ward in the predominantly Catholic country, and reportedly in the world. – LA Times

Machines, Director Rahul Jain

Marrying stunning visuals with social advocacy, Rahul Jain’s debut documentary — winner of the Special Jury Award for Cinematography at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival — takes audiences into the labyrinthine passages of an enormous textile factory in Gujarat, India. Jain’s camera wanders freely between pulsating machines and bubbling vats of dye to create a moving portrait of the human laborers who toil away there for 12 hours a day to eke out a meager living for their families back home. Interviews with these workers and the factory owners who employ them reveal the stark inequality and dangerous working conditions brought about by unregulated industrialization in the region. This political message is delivered amidst the unsettling beauty of the factory’s mechanical underworld and the colorful, billowing fabrics it produces. Director Rahul Jain joins us to talk about the making of his stark, mesmerizing, and unsettling film and the penetrating sense of complicity we all should feel about the inhumane work conditions these men find themselves in.

For news and updates go to: Machines

facebook.com/machinesmovie

 

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Machines open in Los Angeles at the Laemmle’s Monica Fourplex

1332 Second St., Santa Monica, CA 90401  Showtimes: 3:20 PM5:30 PM7:40 PM9:50 PM

Sundance Film Festival 2017 Winner of the Excellence in Cinematography Award

“Five stars! Astonishing. A dignifying hymn to the common worker.” – The Guardian

“Displays an all-too-rare combination of artistic vision and social conscience… [a] sensory immersion into a hidden, secretive environment.” – The Hollywood Reporter

“Visually stunning. Frames everything with an inquisitive eye.”- Financial Times

“Hypnotic and frequently beautiful. An intoxicating look at the lives of… migrant workers.” – Variety

“Operates with an intense rhythm and visual depth.” – No Film School

Strong Island, Director Yance Ford

Strong Island chronicles the arc of a family across history, geography and tragedy – from the racial segregation of the Jim Crow South to the promise of New York City; from the presumed safety of middle class suburbs, to the maelstrom of an unexpected, violent death. It is the story of the Ford family: Barbara Dunmore, William Ford and their three children and how their lives were shaped by the enduring shadow of race in America. In April 1992, on Long Island NY, William Jr., the Ford’s eldest child, a black 24 year-old teacher, was killed by Mark Reilly, a white 19 year-old mechanic. Although Ford was unarmed, he became the prime suspect in his own murder. A deeply intimate and meditative film, Strong Island asks what one can do when the grief of loss is entwined with historical injustice, and how one grapples with the complicity of silence, which can bind a family in an imitation of life, and a nation with a false sense of justice. Director Yance Ford, who is transgender, is a recipient of the Creative Capital Award, a MacDowell Colony Fellowship, a Sundance Documentary Film Program Fellowship, and was among Filmmaker Magazine’s 25 New Faces of Independent Film in 2011. For ten years Ford was privileged to work as Series Producer for the PBS showcase POV and where his curatorial work helped garner more than 16 Emmy nominations. Ford is also an architectural welder, and while at Modern Art Foundry he helped assemble the sculpture “Maman” by Louise Bourgeois—the series of three spiders exhibited at Rockefeller Center, and now on permanent display at the Guggenheim Museum in Bilbao, Spain. Director Yance Ford joins us for a conversation on grief, justice, racism, expectations, and the profound impact this 25-year long saga has had on his family. 

For news and updates go to: strongislandfilm.com

 

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Opening Friday, September 15

IFC CENTER, NEW YORK

IFC Center + Q&A with director Yance Ford – Friday 7:05 PM

LAEMMLE MONICA FILM CENTER, SANTA MONICA

Laemmle Monica Film Center, Santa Monica | California

“Ford is more than a witness-he is a crucial participant in the events of the film, and its elements of pain and guilt are reflected in his grief-stricken, self-interrogating aesthetic.” – Richard Brody, New Yorker

“Ford’s intent as a filmmaker isn’t just to expose and protest the injustice of his brother’s murder. It’s to say: Behold what was lost. A life. A human being. A complex soul. A family’s equilibrium. Feel what was lost.” – Owen Gleiberman, Variety

“It’s clear that the filmmaker wants you to feel the same kind of hurt and anger he feels as more information unfolds about William Ford Jr.’s death.” – Jamie Broadnax, Black Girl Nerds

“Truly special, especially as it moves towards its final act, in which Yance begins to wonder about his own actions before William Jr.’s death, and how they might have contributed to the situation.” – Bilge Emir, Village Voice