RiverRun rolls out Indie Lens Pop-Up schedule
Fresh from its successful screenings of the award-winning documentary Fiddlin’ in Winston-Salem and Elkin, the RiverRun International Film Festival’s Films With Class program has announced its six-film Indie Lens Pop-Up screening series. The series is set to kick off on Tuesday, Oct. 15 with the acclaimed feature documentary Decade of Fire.
All screenings are free and will be held at the Forsyth County Central Library (660 W. 5th St.) in Winston-Salem and the Wallingham Theater at the Yadkin Cultural Arts Center (226 E. Main St.) in Yadkinville. A panel discussion will follow each screening. (There are also additional dates yet to be announced for Greensboro.)
“The Indie Lens films explore topics of major importance to our world and to our community,” observed RiverRun executive director Rob Davis. “The post-screening panel discussions, comprised of local speakers, serve to illuminate the film topics, spark conversations and identify area resources for our audiences.”
The Indie Lens Pop-Up neighborhood screening series is designed to bring people together for community-driven conversations around documentaries broadcast on the award-winning PBS series Independent Lens on UNC-TV. With communities undergoing increased polarization and division, these events provide a gathering place to watch and discuss the documentaries at hundreds of events hosted by series partners across the nation. In the last decade, nearly 6,500 Indie Lens Pop-Up screenings have brought an estimated 370,000 participants together to discuss issues that impact local communities.
“This season, audiences from across the country will convene around this new slate of Indie Lens Pop-Up films,” said Sherry Simpson Dean, senior director of Engagement & Impact at ITVS. “Each of these films offers an incredible opportunity to hear diverse stories, engage with neighbors and become part of our Indie Lens Pop-Up community, where everyone is welcome, and open discussion and dialogue are encouraged.”
The first screening, Decade of Fire, was written, produced and co-directed by Vivian Vazquez Irizarry and Gretchen Hildebran, and explores the spate of tragic fires that rocked the Bronx during the 1970s. It will be screened Oct. 15 at 6 p.m. in Winston-Salem, and will feature panelists Mayor Allen Joines; James Perry, president and CEO, Urban League of Winston-Salem; George Redd, director of program services for Habitat for Humanity, Winston-Salem; and Dr. Keith Vareen, pastor of Providence Baptist Church in Kernersville.
Director Ray Santisteban’s documentary The First Rainbow Coalition examines the efforts of the Chicago Black Panther Party to establish ties with other community-based movements in 1969 to confront such issues as police brutality and sub-standard housing. It will be screening at 7 p.m. on Nov. 14 in Yadkinville and 6 p.m. on Dec. 3 in Winston-Salem, with panelists to be announced later.
Eating Up Easter is a documentary about the impact of tourism on Easter Island (Rapa Nui), and the efforts of the indigenous population and environmental activists to preserve the beauty and culture of the land. The film, which was directed by native Rapa Nui filmmaker Sergio Mata’u Rapu, will be screened at 6 p.m. on Jan. 21, 2020 in Winston-Salem, and 7 p.m. on Jan. 23 in Yadkinville.
Writer/producer/director Jacqueline Olive’s award-winning documentary feature debut Always in Season delves into the circumstances surrounding the mysterious death of Lennon Lacy, a black teenager found hanging from a swing set in Bladenboro, North Carolina, in 2014. The film, narrated by Danny Glover, will be screened at 6 p.m. on Feb. 18 in Winston-Salem and at 7 p.m. on Feb. 27 in Yadkinville.
Bedlam, the documentary feature debut of Emmy-nominated filmmaker Kenneth Paul Rosenberg, takes a hard look at the national crisis surrounding the care of the mentally ill and was filmed over five years. Bedlam will be screened at 7 p.m. on March 12 in Yadkin and at 6 p.m. on March 17 in Winston-Salem.
The series concludes with director Matt Wolf’s Recorder: The Marion Stokes Project, which chronicles the life of Marion Stokes, a radical Communist activist who became a reclusive archivist. For three decades, she recorded television 24 hours a day, seven days a week– beginning in 1979 with the Iranian hostage crisis and ending in 2012, when she died while news of the Sandy Hook shooting played on television, leaving behind some 70,000 VHS cassettes. Recorder will be screened at 7 p.m. on May 7 in Yadkinville and at 6 p.m. on May 19 in Winston-Salem.
The 2020 RiverRun International Film Festival will take place on March 26 – April 5, 2020.
For more information about these screenings or other RiverRun events, call (336) 724-1502 or visit the official website.
See Mark Burger’s reviews of current movies on Burgervideo.com. © 2019, Mark Burger.