Spring Festivals!

March 20, 2018
Spring Festivals!
Spring feels like Festival Season & we are zipping around North America this month with films from our prolific faculty and alumni. SocDocers are attending many festivals – we hope to see you around!
Tribeca Film Festival premieres the latest film from SocDoc faculty Michael Epstein: House Two. In 2005, a group of U.S. Marines killed 24 unarmed Iraqi men, women, and children in a matter of minutes, sparking the largest criminal investigation in Marine Corps history. “House Two” delves into that investigation and the ensuing court proceedings, all the way up to the case's shocking conclusion.

The festival’s Opening Night film is Love, Gilda which opens a window into the world of celebrated comedian and cultural icon Gilda Radner. Directed and produced by Lisa D’Apolito; Toby Shimin (faculty) is Supervising Editor. The film also screens at HotDocs.

United Skates also screens, an ode to America’s roller rinks, long bastions of regional African-American culture, music, and dance. Directed by Dyana Winkler, Tina Brown. David Osit (Class of 2011) is consulting editor. The film also screens at HotDocs.

HotDocs, North America’s largest documentary festival, premieres two alumni films, as well as several faculty films.
Sasha Friedlander’s second feature, Grit, (main image) which sees the evolution of a young activist fighting for reparations 10 years after an industrial accident in Indonesia. Friedlander (Class of 2011) directs and edits the film, which is co-directed by Oscar-winner Cynthia Wade. Axel Baumann (faculty) and Bao Nguyen (Class of 2011) are cinematographers for the film.

Yuqi Kang (Class of 2016) makes her Canadian debut with her thesis film, A Little Wisdom, (pictured above) an intimately observed portrait of orphaned monks living in an isolated monastery in Lumbini, Nepal. Kang Directed, Produced, Edited and DP’d the film. Her crew includes DP and co-producer Amitabh Joshi (class of 2014; faculty); DP Paola Ochoa (2015); faculty Maro Chermayeff (Producer), Alan Berliner (story consultant & thesis advisor), and Donna Shepherd (editing consultant). A Little Wisdom has also screened at Busan Film Festival 2017 and SXSW 2018, where it won a Special Jury Award for Film Poster Design. 

Faculty Lori Cheatle produces MATANGI / MAYA / M.I.A., a portrait of rapper, singer-songwriter, record producer and activist M.I.A. The film is directed by Stephen Loveridge and has played festivals all over the world, including Sundance and Berlin, and is the Opening Night of the upcoming New Directors/New Films.

Mr. Soul – directed by faculty Sam Pollard, as well as Melissa Haizlip focuses on SOUL!, the first nationally broadcast all-Black variety show on public television, merging artists from the margins with post–civil rights Black radical thought.

Crime + Punishment, intimately observes the real lives and struggles of a group of black and Latino whistleblower cops and the young minorities they are pressured to arrest and summons in New York City. Directed by Stephen Maing; Consulting Editor David Osit (2011). The film premiered at Sundance 2018, and also shows at Full Frame.
Industry and filmmaker favorite festival Full Frame screens quite a few SocDoc titles including:
Dark Money Directed by Kimberly Reed; Associate Producer/Assistant Editor Sandra Itainen​ (Class of 2017). This modern-day political thriller follows Montana’s fight against corrupt campaign financing, a struggle that could alter the devastating effects of unlimited anonymous funding on elections nationwide.

Generation Wealth Director: Lauren Greenfield; Cinematographer Jerry Risius​ (faculty). For 25 years, Lauren Greenfield has documented affluence around the world. In this fascinating overview of her immense body of work, the photographer reconnects with subjects of her images to consider their relationships to money, then and now, and her own fascination with the topic.
Maynard Sam Pollard (Director) A captivating portrait of Maynard Jackson, Atlanta’s first black mayor.

The Price Of Everything Directed by Nathaniel Kahn; Director of photography by Bob Richman​ (faculty). Dynamic, compelling, and entertaining vision of the art world-focusing especially on artists and their art.
Sky & Ground Directed by Talya Tibbon & Joshua Bennett, produced by Maro Chermayeff (department chair), Cinematography by Axel Baumann (faculty) a Syrian-Kurdish refugee family flees from a holding camp at the Greece-Macedonia border and take their chances at reaching asylum by foot on a perilous one-way trip to Berlin.

This Is Home Directed by Alexandra Shiva; Edited by Toby Shimin​ (faculty). Four Syrian families struggling to find their way in America.

The festival is also showing a retrospective program of films on the subject of “crime and punishment” curated by Joe Berlinger, which includes two films with cinematography from faculty Bob Richman: Paradise Lost: The Child Murders at Robin Hood Hills (1996), directed by Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky. Gone: The Forgotten Women Of Ohio (2017), directed by Berlinger.
Last but not least, we somehow forgot to mention here that we were at Sundance!
Alumni films included: CRIME + PUNISHMENT (Dir.: S. Maing; Consulting Editor David Osit, '11) and DARK MONEY (Dir.: K. Reed; Associate Producer/Assistant Editor Sandra Itainen, '17). Faculty films included: GENERATION WEALTH (Dir.: L. Greenfield; DP Jerry Risius); MATANGI / MAYA / M.I.A (Dir.: S. Loveridge; Producer Lori Cheatle); THE PRICE OF EVERYTHING pictured above (Dir.: N. Kahn, DP Bob Richman); SEEING ALLRED (Dirs.: S. Sartain, R. Grossman; DP J. Risius) and THIS IS HOME (Dir.: A. Shiva; Editor Toby Shimin).