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June 26, 2020 - July 30, 2020
Femi, a British boy of Nigerian descent who, after a happy childhood in rural Lincolnshire with his white foster mother, moves to inner London to live with his Nigerian mum. Struggling with the unfamiliar culture and values of his new environment, teenage Femi has to figure out which path to adulthood he wants to take, and what it means to be a young black man in London. Going back home to Nigeria with his mum to find his Nigerian roots will help adolescent Femi find grounding and hope for a better future. NR / 99 min.
" Thoughtfully alternates universal adolescent insecurities with urgently specific minority politics - filtered through a first-person perspective that itself oscillates between furious clarity and vivid confusion." ~ Variety
July 3, 2020 - July 30, 2020
Using interviews and rare archival footage, JOHN LEWIS: GOOD TROUBLE chronicles Lewis’ 60-plus years of social activism and legislative action on civil rights, voting rights, gun control, health-care reform and immigration. Using present-day interviews with Lewis, now 80 years old, Porter explores his childhood experiences, his inspiring family and his fateful meeting with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1957. In addition to her interviews with Lewis and his family, Porter’s primarily cinéma verité film also includes interviews with political leaders, Congressional colleagues, and other people who figure prominently in his life. PG / 96 min.
Following the feature is a pre-recorded discussion between Representative Lewis and Oprah Winfrey, filmed last month and being made available exclusively for virtual cinema and in-theater engagements of the film. This is a wide-ranging, informal, 16-minute conversation that’s a perfect follow-up to the documentary, and could not be more relevant.
July 10, 2020 - July 30, 2020
Ella Fitzgerald was a 15 year-old street kid when she won a talent contest in 1934 at the Apollo Theatre in Harlem. Within months she was a star. This new documentary follows her extraordinary journey over six decades as her sublime voice transforms the tragedies of her own life and the troubles of her times into joy. The film uses never-before-seen images and unheard interviews to bring Ella Fitzgerald to life and to tell the story of her music. - a black woman who makes her career in the face of horrifying racism.
Featuring interviews with: Tony Bennett, Jamie Cullum, Laura Mvula, Johnny Mathis, Smokey Robinson, Cleo Laine, Andre Previn, Norma Miller, Patti Austin, Izsak Perlman, Margo Jefferson, Will Friedwald and a rare interview with Ella’s son, Ray Brown Jr. NR / 89 min.
July 24, 2020 - August 13, 2020
Shannon Hoon, lead singer of the rock band Blind Melon, filmed himself from 1990-95 with a Hi8 video camera, recording up until a few hours before his sudden death at the age of 28. His camera was a diary and his closest confidant. In the hundreds of hours of footage, Hoon meticulously documented his life – his family, his creative process, his television, his band’s rise to fame and his struggle with addiction. He filmed his daughter’s birth, and archived the politics and culture of the 90’s, an era right before the internet changed the world. Created with his own footage, voice and music, this intimate autobiography is a prescient exploration of experience and memory in the age of video. It is also Shannon Hoon’s last work, completed 23 years after his death. NR / 102 min.
When four young orphans—Hikari, Ikuko, Ishi, and Takemura—first meet, their parents’ bodies are being turned into dust, like fine Parmesan atop a plate of spaghetti Bolognese, and yet none of them can shed a tear. They are like zombies; devoid of all emotion. With no family, no future, no dreams, and no way to move forward, the young teens decide that the first level of this new existence involves salvaging a gaming console, an old electric bass, and a charred wok from their former homes—just enough to start a band…and then conquer the world. Tragedy, comedy, music, social criticism, and teenage angst are all subsumed in this eccentric cinematic tsunami. NR / 120 min. Japanese w/ subtitles.
“A rainbow-colored scream into the abyss, Nagahisa’s story of a quartet of orphaned tweens who start a chiptune rock band is as rigorous in its exploration of grief as it is stylistically exuberant.” – Emily Yoshida, Vulture