Henry Louis Gates, Jr.’s two-part series, draws us along the transformative history of the Black church in America. Oprah Winfrey, John Legend, Jennifer Hudson, Bishop Michael Curry, Cornel West, Pastor Shirley Caesar, Rev. Al Sharpton, Yolanda Adams, Rev. William Barber II, BeBe Winans, Bishop Vashti Murphy McKenzie and more speak to the power and grace of the Black church across four centuries from slavery to today.
Introduced by Amilcar Shabazz, Professor in the W. E. B. Du Bois Department of Afro-American Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
THE BLACK CHURCH: THIS IS OUR STORY, THIS IS OUR SONG is a production of McGee Media, Inkwell Media and WETA Washington, D.C., in association with Get Lifted. Henry Louis Gates, Jr. is the writer, host, and executive producer. Dyllan McGee is executive producer. John F. Wilson is executive producer in charge for WETA. Bill Gardner is the executive in charge for PBS. Stacey L. Holman is the series producer and director. Christopher Bryson and Shayla Harris are producer/directors. Deborah C. Porfido is the supervising producer. Kevin Burke is producer. Robert L. Yacyshyn is the line producer. Christine Fall is the archival producer.
Through shard-like glimpses of everyday life in post-Hurricane María Puerto Rico, LANDFALL is a cautionary tale for our times. Set against the backdrop of protests that toppled the US colony’s governor in 2019, the film offers a prismatic portrait of collective trauma and resistance. While the devastation of María attracted a great deal of media coverage, the world has paid far less attention to the storm that preceded it: a 72-billion-dollar debt crisis crippling Puerto Rico well before the winds and waters hit. LANDFALL examines the kinship of these two storms—one environmental, the other economic—juxtaposing competing utopian visions of recovery. Featuring intimate encounters with Puerto Ricans as well as the newcomers flooding the island, LANDFALL reflects on a question of contemporary global relevance: when the world falls apart, who do we become?
Picture a Scientist Chronicles the groundswell of researchers who are writing a new chapter for women scientists. Biologist Nancy Hopkins, chemist Raychelle Burks, and geologist Jane Willenbring lead viewers on a journey deep into their own experiences in the sciences, ranging from brutal harassment to years of subtle slights. Along the way, from cramped laboratories to spectacular field stations, we encounter scientific luminaries – including social scientists, neuroscientists, and psychologists – who provide new perspectives on how to make science itself more diverse, equitable, and open to all.” (Official Website)
Filmed during the catastrophic floods of 2019 , Bandar Band is a road movie of aspiring musicians journeying across Iran to compete in a talent contest. Pregnant Mahla along with the other members of Bandar Band, her husband and one of their closest friends, starts her journey to Tehran from a southern province just when they have lost all they had in the flood. They still keep their hopes alive, however every road they take leads to a dead-end in a flood-stricken land. They intend to go to Tehran, but they wonder if it is just another turn around a vicious circle. (Accessible to Massachusetts audiences only. )
FORENSICKNESS: In an attempt to analyse Chris Kennedy’s ‘Watching the Detectives’, a researcher dives into a massive archive of media produced after the Boston attacks. Her online wanderings offer a performative exploration of the history of critical thinking and the ruthless politics of truth production.
WATCHING THE PAIN OF OTHERS: In this deeply personal video diary, a young researcher tries to make sense of her fascination for the film "The Pain of Others" by Penny Lane. A deep dive into the discomforting world of YouTube and online conspiracies, that challenges traditional notions of what documentary cinema is, or should be.
“On a busy, noisy high-traffic street corner in Alexandria, Egypt, a seemingly vacant corner lot surrounded by chain link fencing is the training site of Egypt’s most elite champions – female weightlifters. Zebiba (Arabic for “raisin”) has been training at the site for five years, since she was 9, following in the footsteps of Egypt’s most famous athletes of all time – including the first Arab, female, two-time Olympic medalist, Abeer Abdel Rahman, and World champion and Olympic athlete, Nahla Ramadan. Nahla’s father, the visionary Captain Ramadan, has bred champions, female champions, from his makeshift corner–lot training site for over two decades – 4 Olympic, 9 World and 17 Pan African champions. Now it is Zebiba’s turn. But can Zebiba put aside her youthful instincts, and direct her focus to be the weightlifting champion the Captain is sure she is?”
“‘We transgender are the revolution!’ Indianara Siqueira, trans activist and politician, admonishes her political party for ousting her days before the 2018 Brazilian national elections. In the same election cycle extreme-Right candidate Jair Bolsonaro is a forerunner for president of the republic. Indianara is the mother of a homeless shelter and community center for trans sex workers called Nem House in the center of Rio de Janeiro. Nem House is a squat and facing the threat of eviction Indianara occupies a colonial palace near Nem House to bargain with the city to save the house. As Brazilian democracy crumbles around her she fights to save her community from the uncertain streets.” (Official website)
A comedy/drama about women in cinema in South Korea, directed by film producer (for Hong Sang-soo) Kim Cho-hee. “After a sudden death of the director she worked with for a long time, a film producer Chan-sil is now unemployed. Jobless and moneyless, she begins to work as a cleaning lady at an actress’ place. By chance, she meets a young man who teaches French to the actress. Chan-sil is strongly attracted to him while her old anxieties begin to emerge; her already-gone-youth, screwed love, and broken career…”
We are currently putting together the schedule for this year's event. Come back to this page as we add items to our festival program.