2011 DC Caribbean Filmfest
June 3 - 6
In recognition of Caribbean Heritage Month in June, AFI Silver is proud to once again host screenings of the DC Caribbean Filmfest, now in its 11th year.
The festival is co-presented with Caribbean Association of World Bank and IMF Staff (CAWI), Caribbean Professional Network (CPN), Institute of Caribbean Studies (ICS) and TransAfrica Forum.
'70: REMEMBERING A REVOLUTION
Between February and April 1970, the streets of Trinidad and Tobago were filled with angry young black men and women chanting "Power to the People." This was the legendary Black Power revolution, which captivated black citizens' imaginations and made the government and white establishment very nervous. Forty years later, Afros have given way to grey beards and the Che berets have been stored away, but as this documentary shows, the impact of the Black Power revolution remains fresh and strong.
DIR Alex de Verteuil, Elizabeth Topp; PROD Stephen Cadiz. Trinidad and Tobago, 2010, color, 112 min. NOT RATED
Fri, Jun 3, 7:00
ROCKSTEADY: THE ROOTS OF REGGAE
The remaining great singers and musicians of rocksteady — the successor to ska and precursor of reggae, the prevailing style during Jamaica's Golden Age of music in the late 1960s — come together after 40 years to record an album of their greatest hits, to perform together again at a reunion concert in Kingston, Jamaica, and to tell their story.
DIR Stascha Bader; PROD Betty Palik, Valentin Greutert. Switzerland/Canada, 2009, color, 98 min. NOT RATED
Fri, Jun 3, 9:30
FRANTZ FANON, HIS LIFE, HIS STRUGGLE, HIS WORK
Frantz Fanon, a Martinique-born psychiatrist, became an unlikely spokesman for the Algerian revolution against French colonialism in the 1950s. While secretly aiding the rebels of the Algerian anti-colonial war, Fanon cared for victims and perpetrators alike, producing case notes that shed invaluable light on the psychic traumas of colonial war. Fifty years after his death, this documentary reveals the short and intense life of one of the great thinkers of the 20th century.
DIR Cheikh Djemaï. Martinique/France/Algeria/Tunisia, 2004, b&w/color, 52 min. In French with English subtitles. NOT RATED
In Person: director Catherine Murphy!
The Cuban Literacy Campaign in 1961 was one of the farthest-reaching and most successful literacy campaigns to date, one of the pinnacle moments in the social history of the Americas. This documentary tells the story of the campaign through the personal accounts of the female literacy workers who traveled to the mountains and valleys across the island to teach — and found themselves deeply transformed in the process. (Photo courtesy Liborio Noval, 1961)
DIR Catherine Murphy. US/Cuba, 2011, b&w/color, 33 min. In Spanish with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Sat, Jun 4, 5:00
THE OTHER SIDE OF THE WATER: THE JOURNEY OF A HAITIAN RARA BAND IN BROOKLYN
Part carnival, part vodou ceremony and part grassroots protest, Haitian "rara" is one of the most breathtaking and contested forms of music in the Americas. This documentary follows the journey of DJARARA, a rara band made up of young immigrants who take this ancient music from the hills of Haiti and reinvent it on the streets of Brooklyn. A Third World Newsreel release.
DIR/PROD Jeremy Robins, Magali Damas. US/Haiti, 2008, b&w/color, 52 min. NOT RATED
In Person: director Dalton Narine!
You might recognize Peter Minshall's spectacular costumes and elaborate puppets from the opening night ceremonies of the Barcelona, Atlanta and Salt Lake City Olympic Games. But this genre-bending artist is best known and respected for his "mobile street theater" during Trinidad and Tobago Carnival. Mingling traditional Carnival elements with novel ideas, Minshall goes chic to chic with upper crust art.
DIR/PROD Dalton Narine. US/Trinidad and Tobago, 2010, color, 57 min. NOT RATED
Sat, Jun 4, 7:00
THE UPSETTER: THE LIFE AND MUSIC OF LEE "SCRATCH" PERRY
Discover the visionary Jamaican musician and artist, Lee "Scratch" Perry who burst on the scene in the late 1950s with a brand new sound, inventing a genre of music that would come to be called reggae. Perry gained international recognition, working with The Clash and Paul McCartney while mentoring a young Bob Marley. Narrated by Benicio Del Toro, this film charts 70 years in the life of Perry through his own words.
DIR/SCR/PROD Ethan Higbee, Adam Bhala Lough. US, 2008, color, 90 min. NOT RATED
Sat, Jun 4, 9:30
In Person: co-directors Huguens Jean and Philip Knowlton!
This documentary follows Clifford and Huguens, two Haitian immigrant brothers who now call Maryland home, on an emotional journey back to their mother country in the wake of the devastating earthquake that left the country ravaged. Collecting stories from the friends and family they left behind, the brothers find a very different place then the one they remember.
DIR Huguens Jean, Philip Knowlton; SCR Clifford Muse; PROD Andrew J. Bly. US/Haiti, 2011, color, 86 min. In English and Creole with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Sun, Jun 5, 5:30
AVA & GABRIEL: A LOVE STORY [Ava & Gabriel: Un Historia di Amor]
Formally trained artist Gabriel courts controversy when he chooses the local Antillean beauty Ava to model for his portrait of the Virgin Mary in the town's church. Adding fuel to the fire are the white police officer to whom she's engaged and the wife of the island's governor who has fallen in love with the taboo painter.
DIR Félix de Rooy; SCR/PROD Norman de Palm, based on a story by Felix de Rooy. Netherlands/Curacao, 1990, color, 100 min. In Dutch and Papamientu with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Sun, Jun 5, 7:20
Winner, Best Music Documentary, 2009 AFI-Discovery Channel Silverdocs
Three Jamaican musicians fight for a place in the overcrowded reggae field. Ice Anastasia hails from a posh neighborhood in Kingston, while Turbulence is from Trenchtown. Kemoy Reid, a weighty female presence, is a country girl at heart. This documentary looks at the grit behind the glamour and explores class and gender issues in Jamaica today. (Courtesy AFI-Discovery Channel Silverdocs)
DIR/PROD Luciano Blotta; PROD Darrin Holender. Argentina, 2009, color, 88 min. In English and Jamaican patois with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Sun, Jun 5, 9:25
ALMACITA, SOUL OF DESOLATO [Almacita di Desolato]
This folktale epic from Curacao focuses on the mythic adventures of Solem, a village priestess and "miracle worker," and little Lucio. Spontaneous songs, rain dances and benta music (performed by Grupo Issoco) become part of the film's folkloric texture. Modest special effects contribute to the moments of magic and hallucination, and photographer Ernest Dickerson (SHE'S GOTTA HAVE IT) gives special attention to the film's sun-and-moon imagery (Courtesy Peter Hogue, San Francisco International Film Festival).
DIR Felix de Rooy; SCR/PROD Norman de Palm. Netherlands/Curacao, 1986, color, 100 min. In Papamientu with English subtitles. NOT RATED
Mon, Jun 6, 7:00