THE DOCUMENTARY FILM
A unique filmmaking resource: Facilitated Video Feedback happens when we present work-in-progress, edited footage back to participants to trigger deeper, more contextualized reflection often leading to transcendent moments of awareness. This can be a powerful tool for working with trauma and bringing it into the story as a positive force.
Video feedback enables participants to become more aware of and better able to express their own desires and goals as well as becoming more sensitive and open to those of others. The film can then integrate more authentic and diverse points of view. This enables the film to give voice to those who have been previously marginalized while also creating the atmosphere for those voices to be heard. In this way, we create a visual document that is inclusive, balanced, comprehensive and thus of value and use by all stakeholders. Our films have enjoyed exposure in international film festivals, on broadcast television, and are often used as primary resources in university courses, diversity training, and in government policy-making.
In the following clip, “Franco-Americas Confront Their History” illustrates several examples of video feedback taking place in a group setting and how it stimulates historically deeper, emotional, and culturally contextualized community participation.
Réveil – Waking Up French
Réveil-Waking Up French, (2002) 80 minutes.
Réveil is relevant to everyone. As the melting pot attitude and globalization threatens diversity and the heritage of so many cultures, Réveil explores the struggle for cultural survival in the very heart of American monoculture. It reveals the importance of history and heritage understanding and demonstrates how languages can be reacquired for personal and community renewal that is truly inspiring.
Language of America
Language of America, (2009) 80 minutes.
Language of America explores Indian language, philosophy, and community as never before. It shows how Indian words reveal an inherent connectedness between people, nature and spirit. The film bears witness to America's history of Indian human rights abuse, yet it inspires hope by promoting an understanding of diversity that accepts Native peoples’ inextricably shared history and destiny with their neighbors.
Shopping For Girls
(A work in progress)
In 1965 five white men, posing as hunters, invaded the homes of two adjacent Passamaquoddy families boasting they were “shopping for girls”. Over six hours they offered money for sex with minors, sexually and physically assaulted children, murdered one Indian man outright, and inflicted trauma that would kill two other Native men and permanently scar their families and community. The film builds on feedback video that includes the families, the Department of Justice, and National Indian forums. Yet to this day, not one agency of justice has been willing to pursue the four murderers who are still living in the same town.
Funding: People of Color Fund of the Maine Community Foundation and Maine Humanities Council.
Si Je Comprends Bien...
(If I Really Understand...)
Si Je Comprends Bien, (1980) 50 minutes.
Si Je Comprends Bien chronicles the loss of French speaking in New England while at the same time exploring why the nearby Canadian Province of Québec was holding a referendum to separate from Canada in order to protect its language and culture.