Winner of the Audience Award for Best Documentary, New York International Film & Video Festival
“America’s embattled public education system provides kindling for numerous negative news stories—school shootings, drugs, gang violence. Accidental Hero: Room 408 provides a powerful exception to those stereotypes. Following an East Bay public high school teacher and his class, the film tells the story of Tommie Lindsey, an extraordinary man who is changing lives by introducing his students to a little known academic sport called “forensics.” Accidental Hero has important messages about the tremendous potential that young people from diverse backgrounds can realize when they are given the support of good teachers and ample educational tools.” (56 minutes) by Terri DeBono and Steve Rosen
Welcome to the world of forensics: students train and compete in oratory, debate, and dramatic interpretation of events. By letting students draw on their cultural backgrounds – sometimes pent up pain or anger – the teacher channels emotions into spellbinding performances in this engrossing documentary. Film contains strong language.
Thursday, January 19, 2012 6:30 PM Reception with light snacks | 7:00 – 8:00 PM Film Screening 8:00 – 9:00 PM Community Discussion Free
Writ Writer portrays the historic conflict that emerged in the 1960s when Texas prisoners petitioned the courts for relief from inhumane prison conditions. Focusing on the story of self-taught jailhouse lawyer Fred Arispe Cruz, the film uncovers his legal battle, his collaboration with poverty law attorney Frances Jalet, and his successful litigation for the right of Texas prisoners to assist one another with lawsuits. His litigation paved the legal path for Ruiz v Estelle, the most comprehensive court-ordered state prison reform litigation in U.S. history.
Thursday, December 1, 2011 6:30 PM Reception | 7:00 – 8:00 PM Film Screening 8:00 – 9:00 PM Community Discussion
“Paths of the Displaced tells three kinds of stories: the first are the stories of five Sudanese teenage refugees and the tremendous hardships they endured to survive war and genocide and escape to the U.S. The second are their stories of survival and adaptation…in Lincoln [Nebraska]. The third is the storyteller’s tale, about [Natalia] Ledford herself, an Anglo-American woman and high school senior at the time the film began, who decided that the stories of her classmates were important enough that the world should know them. Each of these stories is compelling on its own; together they form an irresistible tapestry.” ~ Hanna Day Woodruff, starcityblog.com
Thursday, October 27, 2011 6:30 PM Reception | 7:00 – 8:00 PM Film Screening 8:00 – 9:00 PM Community Discussion
Cruz Reynoso: Sowing the Seeds of Justice chronicles the life of a man who gave Ronald Reagan fits by fighting for immigrants’ rights, and helped Cesar Chavez improve the lives of millions of farm workers. It will engage students and inspire thought and discussion in a wide range of courses in ethnic and Latino studies, American studies and history, sociology, law and jurisprudence, public policy, and contemporary social problems. It was produced by award-winning filmmaker Abby Ginzberg and narrated by noted actor and writer Luis Valdez.
Tuesday, July 19, 2011 6:30 PM Reception | 7:00 – 8:00 PM Film Screening
8:00 – 9:00 PM Community Discussion