Selections For 2016

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A SYRIAN REFUGEE

Director: Ahmad Assad
Narrator: Mahnoor Samana
Jordan (English)  2016, 3 min 41 sec

Description: A filmmaker goes to a Syrian refugee camp and spends the night with a family of 16. Together, they highlight a day in the life of a Syrian refugee.
BECAUSE I AM
BECAUSE I AM

Director: Lawrie Zidyana
Writer: Tinashe Wakapila, Harriet, Mupungu
Producer: Moud N Goba
Key Cast: Valerie Abiyou, Jocklyn Awoonor-Gordon, Sarah Bishola, Skhumbuzo Khumalo, Nomsa Mulhwa, Bliss Namuddu
Art: Lettie Precious, Pavlina Wrzecka
United Kingdom (English) 2016, 5 min 57 sec
http://www.honaafrica.com/

Description: Based on a poem by a Zimbabwean LGBT activist written in response to the country’s homophobia that is being perpetuated president Robert Mugabe. The short was filmed in South East London featuring a cast of six all women playing multiple roles in this portrayal of being a lesbian in an african country. Five of the actors are refugee women who fled their countries in for of persecution for their sexuality.
CITY OF REFUGE

Director/Producer/EditorIzzy Atiyah
Jordan (Arabic, English) 2016, 13 min 42 sec
www.cityofrefugefilm.weebly.com

Description: Izzy Atiyah, a 15 year old American high school student travels to the Zaatari Syrian Refugee Camp in Jordan. She is the first youth to document the Syrian Refugee Crisis and the first to engage in the youth to youth perspective. Join this teenager as she discovers how the camp feeds 80,000 people every day, meets inspiring women who are learning to support themselves and their families, learns the story of a fellow teenage refugee with a positive outlook on life, and interviews a refugee with a passion for education despite few resources.

KOKOTA: ISLET OF HOPE

Director: Craig Norris
Canada (English, Swahili) 2016, 29 min 2 sec
http://videoband.ca/

Description: Mbarouk Mussa Omar is from a small East African Island called Pemba. Nearly ten years ago he visited a tiny neighbouring islet called Kokota and was shocked by what he saw. Kokota was teetering towards collapse, and Mbarouk knew climate change and deforestation were the culprits. He desperately wanted to help Kokota, but what could one poor man from Pemba possibly do?
Kokota: The Islet of Hope tells the story of Mbarouk’s quest to help Kokota. This short introduces viewers to resilient people living on the front lines of climate change and tells the story of how these unlikely heroes have managed to innovatively adapt to a warming climate while reforesting their island. This inspirational film promises to leave audiences around the world believing that simple solutions really can have huge impacts.

LAMENTO CON ALAS: Documenting Unidentified Deaths Along the Texas-Mexico Border

Director/Writer/Producer: Pilar Timpane
USA (English) 2016, 11 min 27 sec

Description: Each year, thousands of immigrants die on their journey into the United States through Texas, and only a few Americans are doing anything to help. Dr. Lori Baker is a forensic scientist from Baylor University who works with Ranch Director Lavoyger Durham to exhume, identify, and repatriate the remains of immigrants who have died crossing due to dehydration in the desert, most of whom have been found after shoddy burials on the Texas-Mexico border. The music in this piece is composed by el Salvadoran composer and former refugee Carlos Colon, a composer and cultural promoter at Baylor University.
NOTHING HAPPENED

Director: Ted Schneider
Writer: Tony Parent
Producer: Tony Parent, Ted Schneider, Jeremy Weaver, Walter Puryear, Kevin Wong, Marlon Morrison, Fred Parent, Frank Hooker
Key Cast: Tony Parent, Mercedes De Jesus, Walter Puryear, Mykal Fax, Marlon Morrison, Meeko Gattuso, Kevin Wong, Biko Eisen-Martin, George Gaffney, Daniel Frith, Talia Marrero, Pareece MacaMilli
USA (English) 2016, 22 min 43 sec
http://www.nothinghappenedfilm.com/

Description: A man recounts his Stop and Frisk arrest and the ripples it makes in his life and close relationships. He wrestles with how to place what happened to him alongside the tragic stories fueling the current national dialogue on Racial Profiling. At turns, comic and reflective, this short docudrama is a voice for the “non-sensational” stories, which can get lost among the headlines permeating news and social media. It suggests that one’s own awareness of subtler forms of racism needs to be cultivated for change to be truly radical.
PIECE OF CAKE

Writer/Director: Ella Lentini
Executive Producer: R.W. Reinhardt
Co-Executive Producer: Fabio Granato, Fabrizio Lentini,
Producer: Francesca Lentini
Co-Producer: Tonya Sandis, Kym Sandis
Key Cast: Shannon Beveridge, Ella Lentini,Shoshana Bush, Becky Ann Baker, Rachael Kennedy
Director of Photography: Corey C. Waters
Editor: Arielle Zakowski
Casting: Melissa Klein
USA, (English)  2016, 12 min
http://theriotlife.com/piece-of-cake/

Description: Sarcastic & complicated Jessie and her free-spirited girlfriend, Alex, couldn’t be any more different from each other. But cupid’s arrow is blind, and it was love at first sight. After a year of dating paradise, things go awry when Jessie’s parents, who are unaware that Alex is a girl, arrive to town for their anniversary. At a crossroads, Jessie must decide between revealing her sexuality to her parents, or losing the love of her life.
ROCK BOTTOM

Director/Writer/Producer: Teresa Cocas
Director: Cody Cocas Producer:Yari Figeroa
Key Cast: Teresa Cocas, Carrissa Hunt, Denise Hall
USA (English) 2016, 5 min

Description: A woman who’s Marine husband was killed in action struggles with the mounting pressures of life without him.
THE ENIGMATIC LIFE CYCLE OF WASTE

Writer/Director/Producer: Julia Newman
USA (English) 2016, 7 min 15 sec
http://www.julianewmanfilms.com/

Description: We throw away water bottles, plastic bags, food wrappers daily. But where does all this waste go? In this short documentary, I explore the disposal process of garbage within Essex County, NJ, debunking what is, the enigmatic life cycle of waste.
THROUGH THE THICK

Writer/Director/Producer: Nino Leitner
Writer: Nic Divischek
Key Cast: Andrew Kearney, Rodney Visser, Dr. Johan Joubert
South Africa (English) 2016, 14 min
http://www.ninofilm.net/blog/

Description: With over one thousand South African rhinos killed every year by illegal poaching, their numbers are dwindling fast. Their horn is a valued commodity in the far east, with healing properties that are as miraculous as they are unproven. THROUGH THE THICK takes us not only into the dense South African bush, but also into the thick of an issue that spans continents, cultures and generations.
THROWING THEIR WEIGHT AROUND: Leveraging Power for Social Change

Director/Writer/Producer: Suzanne Ali
Key Cast: Salam Al-Marayati, Georgianne Kelman, Erik Oberholtzer
USA (English) 2016, 8 min
https://vimeo.com/user51838602/videos

Description: What motivates a leader to leverage their power to push for social change? This documentary film explores leaders who are challenging the power paradigm by using their influence to create a more equitable, sustainable, inclusive society.
TODAY THEY TOOK MY SON

Director: Pierre Dawalibi
Writer: Farah Nabulsi, Hind Shoufani
Producer: Farah Nabulsi
Lebanon (English) 2016, 7min 45 sec
www.farahnabulsi.com

Description: A mother coping with her young son being taken away by a military system. Her helplessness to prevent the cruel and inhumane treatment she knows he is experiencing is more than any mother can bear.
TOM AND HIS COMPUTER “ORGAN”

Director: Martin Garde Abildgaard
Producer: Rikke Katborg
Editor: Nicolaj Monberg
Cinematographer: Mattias Troelstrup
VFX/Grading: Mikael Balle
Key Cast: Christan Diaz, Anna Ester
Denmark (English)
2016, 3min
https://vimeo.com/162996862

Description: A captivating and surreal story about birth…
WHAT THE PEOPLE WANT

Director: Kathleen Judge
Animation: Kathleen Judge
Music: Freakwater
Lyrics: Catherine Irwin
USA (English)  2016, 3 min 16 sec
http://www.judgeworks.com/

Description: This animated music video takes inspiration from the songs lyric and especially the disappearance, murder, and attacks on women around the world. Specifically the missing and murdered African American women in the U.S., women on buses in India, the women of Ciudad Juázez and murdered Indigenous women in Canada.