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by Cynthia Fuchs

3 Feb 2017

James Baldwin in I Am Not Your Negro (2016)

“Look at my African American.” It’s a good bet that Donald Trump, who infamously made this assertion about a crowd member during his campaign last year, has not read James Baldwin. But James Baldwin has read him, which is to say, Baldwin knew and anticipated men like Trump, understood their fears and their needs.

Raoul Peck’s brilliant documentary—nominated for a Best Feature Documentary Academy Award—reminds the rest of us how much, how deeply and how incisively, Baldwin knew and anticipated, how well he read his world and how elegantly he wrote about that world. As the documentary presents Baldwin’s resistance, we might now take heart in it and also borrow from it.

by Cynthia Fuchs

30 Jan 2017

As we work to understand the current climate of post-truths and “alternative facts”, we might all do well to think again about particular historical moments. Consider, for instance, the ways that the O.J. Simpson story reveals who experiences, beliefs, and politics shape realities, shared and oppositional. Questions of credibility and evidence shape this epic, no matter which of its many sides you might believe. This is exactly the trouble—for this case and the nation that produced it—according to Ezra Edelman’s magnificent documentary O.J.: Made in America, nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, and now showing at the Doc Yard, with Edelman appearing in person on Monday, January 30. Juxtaposing images and interviews, revelations and old news, the film makes clear repeatedly that people base their beliefs on what they see, but what they see is inevitably framed by experiences and expectations.

by Will Rivitz

18 Aug 2016

If you’re looking for a fascinating way to spend 20 minutes this lovely Thursday morning, we’ve got you covered — we’re pleased to be able to premiere a mini-documentary on the sound of contemporary Latin American music. Produced by ZZK Records and featuring up-and-coming singer-songwriter Mateo Kingman on narration duties, it explores the innovative and exciting new music coming out of Ecuador. Have a look below.

by PopMatters Staff

2 Aug 2016

Sing Street takes us back to 1980s Dublin seen through the eyes of a 14-year-old boy named Conor (Ferdia Walsh-Peelo) who is looking for a break from a home strained by his parents’ relationship and money troubles, while trying to adjust to his new inner-city public school where the kids are rough and the teachers are rougher.

He finds a glimmer of hope in the mysterious, über-cool and beautiful Raphina (Lucy Boynton), and with the aim of winning her heart he invites her to star in his band’s music videos. There’s only one problem: he’s not part of a band… yet. She agrees, and now Conor must deliver what he’s promised—calling himself “Cosmo” and immersing himself in the vibrant rock music trends of the decade, he forms a band with a few lads, and the group pours their heart into writing lyrics and shooting videos.

by Chris Barsanti

15 Feb 2016

Today, as US political campaigns take on communities of color—whether trying to win or suppress their votes—we might remember a time when Black Lives were not on TV. This changed with the Black Panthers. Indeed, as The Black Panthers: Vanguard of a Revolution observes, the Panthers were a spectacle made for television. They knew it, played to it, and built on it.

//Mixed media

NYFF 2017: 'Mudbound'

// Notes from the Road

"Dee Rees’ churning and melodramatic epic follows two families in 1940s Mississippi, one black and one white, and the wars they fight abroad and at home.

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