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NAME MC Film Festival 2011

NAME 2011 Multicultural Film Festival

The following films were selected for screening at the 2011 Chicago NAME Conference:

TITLE & Length Producer/Info MC Topic Summary
Children of the Bible(53 minutes) Nitza Fonen Dradoman, info@dragoman.com Race, religion in Middle East Jeremy, a young Ethiopian rap artist, attempts to change the low self-image of the Ethiopian community in Israel. Through music he connects lost Ethiopian youth to their identity and to their parents. Likewise, he tries to stimulate the Kesses, the Ethiopian Rabbis, to fight for their lost spiritual status.
Duhozanye: A Rwandan Village of Widows(52 minutes) Directed by Karoline Frogner. Women Make Movies, www.wmm.com Women’s rights During the 1994 Rwandan genocidal campaign, Daphrose Mukarutamu, a Tutsi, lost her husband and all but two of her 11 children.  In the aftermath she considered suicide.  But instead, she took in 20 orphans and started Duhozanye, an association of Tutsi and Hutu widows who were married to Tutsi men.  This powerful documentary recounts the story of Duhozanye’s formation and growth and profiles organization members helping other women victims and taking part in national reconciliation through open-air people’s courts where they can face, and often forgive, their loved one’s killers.
Harvest of Loneliness: The Bracero Program (58 minutes) Directors: Gilber Gonzalez. Vivian Price, Adrian Salinas. www.harvestofloneliness.com Mexican Americans Hidden within the historical accounts of minorities, workers and immigrants in American society are the stories of the millions of Mexico’s men and women who experienced the temporary contract worker program known as the Bracero Program.  Established in 1942 to replace an alleged wartime labor shortage, the Program lasted until 1964 and was intended to undermine farmworker unionization. The Bracero Program, one of the largest state managed migrations in history, served to import cheap, controlled and disposable workers.  The documentary features the men speaking of their experiences and addresses what to expect from a new temporary contract worker program.
If These Halls Could Talk Lee Mun Wah, Stirfryseminars.com In the summer of 2010, Lee Mun Wah brought together eleven college students from around the country to answer some of these questions. In the process of sharing their stories and different life experiences with each other, they discover and expose the complexity and anguish that accompany those experiences, while trying to be understood and validated in a predominantly white environment. Their stories are starkly emotional and the issues they provoke are equally perplexing, begging to be heard and confronted. Reveals the truths underlying the festering silence on all of our campuses and provides the means to talk about our differences in an environment that is honest, receptive, and, eventually, transformative.
I’m Just AnnekeThe Family Journey

(total, 25 mins.)

Films by Jonathan Skurnik. Youth and Gender Media Project. www.imjustanneke.com. Trans-gendered youth A portrait of a 12 year old girl who loves ice hockey and has a loving, close-knit family.  Anneke is also a hardcore tomboy and everybody she meets assumes she is a boy.  The onset of puberty has created an identity crisis for Anneke.  Does she want to be a boy or a girl when she grows up, or something in between?
Louder Than a Bomb(100 minutes) Directed by Greg Jacobs and Jon Siskelwww.louderthanabombfilm.com Race relations, debunking stereotypes Every year, more than six hundred teenagers from over sixty Chicago area schools gather for the world’s largest youth poetry slam, a competition known as “Louder Than a Bomb”. Founded in 2001, Louder Than a Bomb is the only event of its kind in the country—a youth poetry slam built from the beginning around teams. Rather than emphasize individual poets and performances, the structure of Louder Than a Bomb demands that kids work collaboratively with their peers, presenting, critiquing, and rewriting their pieces. To succeed, teams have to create an environment of mutual trust and support. For many kids, being a part of such an environment—in an academic context—is life-changing. Film chronicles the stereotype-confounding stories of four teams as they prepare for and compete in the 2008 event.
Model Minority: Do the Math(30 minutes) By Teja Arboleda,teja@entertainingdiversity.com Asian Americans Film reveals the impact of the model minority myth on the experiences and perspectives of Asian American (AA) college students. The myth is a complex and contradictory stereotype of AAs as academic over-achievers. While many believe the stereotype is positive, it causes many problems. Asian Americans are overlooked for affirmative action and academic assistance. Tracked by parents, counselors, and social expectations to excel in math-intensive fields, despite their preferences, they struggle to balance personal goals and mental health.
Not Just A Game: Power, Politics & American Sports(67 minutes) Directed by Jeremy Earp.www.mediaed.org Sexism, homophobia, racism in sports A documentary based on his bestselling book The People’s History of Sports in the United States, Zirin argues that far from providing merely escapist entertainment, American sports have long been at the center of some of the major political debates and struggles of our time. In a fascinating tour of the good, the bad, and the ugly of American sports culture, Zirin first traces how American sports have glamorized militarism, racism, sexism, and homophobia, then excavates a largely forgotten history of rebel athletes who stood up to power and fought for social justice beyond the field of play. The result is as deeply moving as it is exhilarating: nothing less than an alternative history of political struggle in the United States as seen through the games its people have played.
Put This On the Map(35 minutes) www.putthisonthemap.org LGBT issues Fed up with a lack of queer visibility, twenty-six young people in Seattle’s eastside suburbs weave together this ground-breaking narrative of shifting identities and a quest for social change. From getting beat-up in a schoolyard to being picked up as a runaway, queer youth exercise courage daily. PTOTM is an intimate invitation into their stories of social isolation and violence, fearlessness and liberation. Professing expertise over their experiences, queer youth provide a candid evaluation of their schools, families, and communities and move an audience from self-reflection to action.
Outlet(19 minutes) 

What Do You Know?

(13 minutes)

Directed by Leigh Iacobucci Frameline Films www.frameline.org LGBTQ issues Outlet tells the personal stories of the teenagers who participate in a support group offered by a Bay Area youth organization called Outlet.  It includes observational footage of their weekly support group and mentoring meetings, giving us a glimpse of the challenges they face at school on a daily basis.WDYK shows interviews with elementary aged children answering questions about their experiences in school with LGBT issues. 
Reel Bad Arabs:How Hollywood Vilifies a People(50 Minutes) Directed by Sut Jhally
www.mediaed.org
Arab Americans A documentary dissects a slanderous aspect of cinematic history that has run virtually unchallenged from the earliest days of silent film to today’s biggest Hollywood blockbusters. Featuring acclaimed author Dr. Jack Shaheen, the film explores a long line of degrading images of Arabs–from Bedouin bandits and submissive maidens to sinister sheikhs and gun-wielding “terrorists”–along the way offering devastating insights into the origin of these stereotypic images, their development at key points in US history, and why they matter so much today. Shaheen shows how the persistence of these images over time has served to naturalize prejudicial attitudes toward Arabs and Arab culture.
Samsara (29 minutes) By Ellen Bruno, Media Library. 190 Rout 17M, POB 1084, Harriman NY 10926
www.brunofilms.com
Asian history, religion Documents the struggle of the Cambodian people to rebuild a shattered society in a climate of war and with limited resources.  Ancient prophecy, Buddhist teachings, and folklore provide a context for understanding the Cambodian tragedy, bringing a humanistic perspective to a country in deep political turmoil.
Scarred Justice: The Orangeburg Massacre(57 minutes) Civil Rights history Everyone remembers the four white students slain at Kent State University in 1970, but most have never heard of the three black students killed in Orangeburg, South Caroline two years earlier.  This stirring investigative documentary restores that bloody tragedy to the history of the Civil Rights Movement after years of official denial
The Sister School Program: Miles Apart but Connected at the Heart(15 minutes) 

Opportunity Education:
Talking Education

(7 minutes)

www.opportunityeducation.org Cross cultural communication This short film showcases the Sister School program by showing how two of the many schools in the program—one in Africa and one in the U.S.—learn from and help each other.  The film will be followed by a discussion of how to get involved in the Sister School program.
Tongues Untied(55 minutes) Directed by Marlon Riggs, Frameline Films. www.frameline.org Homophobia, racism The stories are fierce examples of homophobia and racism: the man refused entry to a gay bar because of his color; the loneliness and isolation of the drag queen.  Yet they also affirm the black gay male experience; protest marches, smoky bars, “snap diva”, humorous “musicology” and Vogue dancers
Voices Unveiled: Turkish Women Who Dare(69 minutes) Director/Producer: Binnur Karawvli.Women Make Movies, www.wmm.com Women’s rights Voices Unveiled examines the issue of women’s equality through portraits of three women pursuing the life paths and careers of their own choosing in present-day Turkey.  Each has defied social expectations in a democratic, secular nation where religious fundamentalism has re-emerged as a political force and patriarchal values still prevail. 
Welcome to My World(50 mins.) www.Operationbreakingstereotypes.org Race/class relations in high school A documentary film about two groups of American teenagers from disparate walks of life, and what happens when they come together. The film follows high school students from inner-city New York and rural Maine as they participate in Operation Breaking Stereotypes, an exchange program that aims to replace the seeds of prejudice with real life experience.
What’s Race Got to Do With It?(49 minutes) California Newsreel
www.newsreel.org
College inter-group dialogue What’s Race Got to Do with It? chronicles the experiences of a new generation of college students—in this case over the course of 16 weeks of intergroup dialogue on he U.C. Berkeley campus.  As they confront themselves and each other about race, they discover they often lack awareness of how different their experience of campus life is from their peers, to the detriment of an inclusive campus climate.
Where Do I Stand?(37 minutes) Molly Black; www.wheredoistandfilm.com Racial identity in S. Africa When xenophobic attacks broke out across South Africa in May 2008, many found themselves caught off guard, shocked by violence that felt like a violation of the principles of their newly democratic nation. Many young people, looted neighborhood shops while some of their classmates, refugees themselves, fled to safer ground. Some youth tried to find a way to help, but still more stood by, watching from their windows or on television. The film captures the optimistic voices of youth trying to make sense of what they experienced and the choices they made during the violence, as they carve out their own places in this complex and divided nation.