By C.J. Hirschfield
When the feature documentary Word is Out: Stories of Some of Our Lives was released in 1977, it rocked my world. I already loved documentaries, but this one–widely considered to be the first feature film about lesbian and gay identity–by gay people, quickly became a symbol of the emerging gay rights movement. I was living in glorious San Francisco at the time, where the film premiered at the Castro Theater. Directed by six people collectively known as the Mariposa Group, it took five years, and over two hundred interviews with gays, to complete the historic project.
BY C.J. Hirschfield
About my home town of Oakland, a recent Washington Post article wrote: “Protesters want to defund the police. Homicides and violence are spiking. In Oakland, ideology and practicality collide.”
It was a wonderful juxtaposition shortly thereafter to watch the excellent new documentary Alice Street, which shows Oakland at its multicultural, peaceful, protesting best.
With the Premiere of the new documentary The Palindromists, we thought our readers would be intrigued to see a variety of short films that are structured as palindromes.
They look the same forwards and backwards.
By C.J Hirschfield
Many fine films tell the story of charismatic teachers who change lives, and they serve to inspire. The new documentary River City Drumbeat is one of these films. Promoted as “a story of music, love and legacies,” it follows a dynamic African drumming corps for kids founded and taught by the magnetic Edward “Nardie” White as he prepares to turn the operation over to a successor after a 30-year run in urban Louisville, Kentucky.
by Kim Nalley
Within the first seconds of Ella Fitzgerald: Just One Of Those Things British Eagle Rock’s documentary on the jazz vocalist, the seamless connection between the tempo and lyrics of Ella Fitzgerald singing How High The Moon and the shaky black and white images of Ella racing down the highway in a car portends that this is going to be a great film. Sit down, relax, and fix yourself a drink because this is a movie worth savoring.
The wonderful sounds of Ella Fitzgerald and Kim Nalley are even more fun if you can watch them perform.
There is no way we can include all the great material one can find on the Internet. We offer a sampling that will keep you happy for hours featuring both Ella and Kim.