This seems like a timely moment to take stock. History is calling and documentary film stories inform our understanding of the past and animate our present. The films we work with can help to make sense of all that is happening.
“With Martin Luther King we have the holiday and we talk about how wonderful he was. But we really should develop his work. That’s our responsibility - everybody’s responsibility. There are 300 million of us, and social change is the job of each of us.”
Diane Nash, in King in the Wilderness
Recovery Boys, Academy Award-nominated Director Elaine McMillion Sheldon’s new film, started streaming on Netflix Friday, June 29. The film offers an intimate glimpse into the lives of four men in West Virginia as they navigate the process of recovery from substance abuse disorder.
“There’s nothing inherently medical about dying. It’s much larger than medicine. It’s purely human. Part of that admission is to keep all of this couched in humanity, not medical science, or social science, but really a full arc of humanity. Kindness, total openness, vulnerability, exchange.”
-B.J. Miller, M.D., End Game
Many may know of BJ Miller from his TED talk, but we got to know him and many other extraordinary palliative caregivers at UCSF and Zen Hospice Project in San Francisco through End Game which launched on Netflix on May 4th…
The documentary film, Dolores, chronicles the story of Dolores Huerta, a civil rights champion whose life's work continues to increase rights and improve the lives of every American. Peter Bratt's engaging film aims to overpower the racism and sexism that have prevented Dolores Huerta from becoming the inspirational household name she deserves to be.
Tell Them We Are Rising, a compelling new film by Stanley Nelson and Marco Williams, details the profound role that Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) have played in American history. It airs on PBS’ Independent Lens Television Series Monday, February 19th. The film spotlights the role that African Americans have had in the birth and growth of our nation, and the role that HBCUs have played as a cultural touchstone.
2017 was a year of struggle and a year in which we saw the emergence of diverse community leadership and open dialogue about some of our most intractable social inequalities. In the context of so much change and upheaval, it is a gift to work with incredibly talented and passionate filmmakers, producers, community leaders, educators, philanthropists and many other dynamic and creative people who understand the power of non-fiction media to contribute to positive social change.
Today, December 14, 2017, marks five years since the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut. For the past 18 months the documentary film Newtown has screened across the country. The film is an important tool to support a long term public health approach to sensible gun ownership.
Heroin(e), streaming on Netflix now, demonstrates the power of documentary film to make real impact. Communities across the country are convening public health officials, people who are addicted and their loved ones, criminal justice officers, harm reduction programs and other stakeholders to organize around the opioid epidemics in their community, using the film and the accompanying community screening guide.
We are sending our kids back to school this week against a political backdrop that is chaotic at best. What is clear is that teachers, parents and students need resources that address our national conversations about hatred, violence and protest, and break those overwhelming pieces down into manageable parts.