DC Black Pride 2013 Film Festival
Saturday, May 25, 1 – 8 p.m., Hyatt Regency Washington Capitol Hill, 400 New Jersey Ave, NW, Washington, DC
Order of Presentation
"Friend of Essex" (2013, 43 minutes)
Friend of Essex explores the stories and experiences of young black gay men. The film maker was inspired by the life of the late writer, producer and activist- Essex Hemphill, to make this film about his own experiences as a young black gay man, dealing with religious homophobia, racism in the LGBTQ community, and his ideas about identity and masculinity. The film maker captures the voices of young black gay men from Boston, New York, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Milwaukee, Philadelphia, Charlotte, West Palm Beach, and the District of Columbia; exploring how they are seen in the black community, the mainstream LGBTQ community, perceived by society, and how they see themselves and one another. Film Maker: Amir Dixon. Mr. Dixon will be available for questions after the screening.
"Pariah" (2011, 88 minutes)
Pariah is a 2011 American contemporary drama film written and directed by Dee Rees. It tells the story of Alike (Adepero Oduye), a 17-year old African-American teenager embracing her identity as a lesbian. Alike is a 17 year old African American girl who hangs out at clubs with her openly lesbian friend Laura. Alike slowly and firmly comes to terms with her own identity as a butch lesbian, comfortable in baggy clothes and male underwear. Her mother Audrey approves of neither her clothes nor her friendship with Laura and forces her to wear feminine clothing and making friends with a young girl from her church. Alike has a better relationship with her father Arthur, who is a police officer. It premiered at the 2011 Sundance Film Festival and was awarded the Excellence in Cinematography Award.
"Noah’s Arc: Jumping the Broom" (2008, 101 minutes)
Noah, Alex, Ricky, Chance and their significant others travel to Martha's Vineyard for a weekend wedding getaway. Drama ensues as one-by-one their relationships start to crack under the pressure of closer examination. Newly successful screenwriter Noah looks to his friends for advice as he prepares to move his relationship to a more serious level while struggling to keep his first studio movie alive. But the friends are of little help as they juggle their own issues. Elder statesmen Chance and Eddie attempt to scratch their seven-year itch but worry their marriage has permanently lost its spark. And playboy Ricky flaunts his barely legal college student fling in the face of his monogamous friends but hides a surprising secret that threatens to rock the house. Add to the mix Alex's crazy-making wedding prep, a closeted superstar rapper, a high-maintenance studio exec, and a surprise visitor and you've got the makings of a hilarious and poignant romantic comedy. Written by S. McCants.
"God Loves Uganda" (2013, 90 minutes)
God Loves Uganda explores the role of the American evangelical movement in Uganda, where American missionaries have been credited with both creating schools and hospitals and promoting dangerous religious bigotry. The film follows evangelical leaders in America and Uganda along with politicians and missionaries as they attempt the radical task of eliminating “sexual sin” and converting Ugandans to fundamentalist Christianity.
As an American influenced bill to make homosexuality punishable by death wins widespread support, tension in Uganda mounts and an atmosphere of murderous hatred takes hold. The film reveals the conflicting motives of faith and greed, ecstasy and egotism, among Ugandan ministers, American evangelical leaders and the foot soldiers of a theology that sees Uganda as a test case, ground zero in a battle not for millions, but billions of souls.
Through verite, interviews, and hidden camera footage - and with unprecedented access - God Loves Uganda takes viewers inside the evangelical movement in both the US and Uganda. It features Lou Engle, the creator of The Call which brings tens of thousands of believers together to pray against sexual sin. It provides a rare view of the most powerful evangelical minister in Uganda, who lives in a mansion where heʼs served by a whitecoated chef. It goes into a Ugandan church where a preacher whips a congregation into mass hysteria with anti-gay rhetoric. It records the culture clash between enthusiastic Midwestern missionaries and world weary Ugandans. It features a heartbreaking interview with gay activist David Kato shortly before he was murdered. It tells the moving story of Bishop Christopher Senyonjo, a minister excommunicated, ostracized and literally spat on for being tolerant and his remarkable campaign for peace and healing in Uganda. Shocking, horrifying, touching and enlightening, God Loves Uganda will make you question what you thought you knew about religion.
"You Are Not Alone" (2012, 65 minutes)
A 65-minute documentary examining many underlying psycho-social factors causing depression in Black gay men: struggles with sexual orientation and identity; being sexually abused by an older adult family member/relative/familiar or authority figure; pastors and imams declaring that a gay man is an abomination and encouraging ostracism from families and communities; low self-esteem, setting out to contract HIV as a form of suicide with the ensuing stigma and discrimination accompanying the diagnosis; and for many aging Black gay men, struggles with loneliness, isolation and abandonment, including desperation for affection, intimacy and sex. In interviews with Black gay men of varying ages, opinions from mental health professionals and religious leaders, and re-enactments of experiences explores the reasons for the descent into depression and suicide. Written and directed by Stanley Bennett Clay; Executive Producer, Antoine Craigwell; and Co-Executive Producer, Dr. Jeff Gradere.