We are please to pass along this info from our friends on the west coast:
The SF Urban Film Fest (SFUFF) is a unique film festival that focuses on cities and civic engagement inspired by great storytelling. We believe that compelling stories can help shape urbanist ideas, practice and project implementation.
The way we approach urban problems has resonated and our film festival is growing quickly. Entering only our second year, we have added two new partners, the University of San Francisco (USF) and the Exploratorium. And we are very grateful our inaugural host, SPUR, has agreed to be our partner again this year.
“Beyond Dystopia: Utopia, Resistance and Reclamation” is our festival theme this year. Throughout the week, we will screen narrative fiction and documentary films that highlight utopian visions that guide us to resist dystopia and reclaim our environment. After each screening, we will convene expert panelists who will tie the themes in the films with relevant urban planning issues such as the role of artists in the urban fabric, the relationship between urban planning and economic inequality, what are ideal cities?
Not to be missed will be a special screening of the classic urban dystopian film Blade Runner at the University of San Francisco’s stately Presentation Hall auditorium. We are also very excited to offer family-centric programming at the Exploratorium’s high-tech Kanbar Forum theatre on the theme of reclaiming urban rivers. For those who want go deeper, we will offer a full day guerrilla filmmaking workshop combining found footage of the Bayview and Hunter’s Point communities and new footage filmed on your own iPhone.
Since the age of 4, Angy Rivera has lived in the United States with a secret that threatens to upend her life: she is undocumented. Now 24 and facing an uncertain future, Rivera becomes an activist for undocumented youth with a popular advice blog and a YouTube channel boasting more than 27,000 views. She steps out of the shadows a second time to share her story of sexual abuse, an experience all too common among undocumented women. DON’T TELL ANYONE (NO LE DIGAS A NADIE) follows Rivera’s remarkable journey from poverty in rural Colombia to the front page of The New York Times. A co-presentation with Latino Public Broadcasting.
Presented in collaboration with MIT’s Department of Women’s and Gender Studies, the DUSP Students of Color Committee, and the Mel King Institute for Community Building, in partnership with the award-winning documentary series POV.
After the film, please join us for a discussion with special guests Justin Steil (Professor, Department of Urban Studies and Planning, MIT), Cristina Jo Perez (Visiting Scholar, MIT Department of Women’s and Gender Studies), and representatives of local organizations advocating for immigrant’s rights.
On Thursday, October 1, 2015, the MIT Urban Planning Film Series welcomed Director Marc Lafia to a special screening of his new film, REVOLUTION OF THE PRESENT.
Humanity seems to be stuck in the perpetual now that is our networked world. More countries are witnessing people taking to the streets in search of answers. REVOLUTION OF THE PRESENT features interviews with thought leaders designed to give meaning to our present and precarious condition. This historic journey allows us to us re-think our presumptions and narratives about the individual and society, the local and global, our politics and technology. This documentary analyzes why the opportunity to augment the scope of human action has become so atomized and diminished. REVOLUTION OF THE PRESENT is an invitation to join the conversation and help contribute to our collective understanding.
As sociologist Saskia Sassen states at the outset of the film, “we live in a time of unsettlement, so much so that we are even questioning the notion of the global, which is healthy.” One could say that our film raises more questions than it answers, but this is its goal.
REVOLUTION OF THE PRESENT is structured as an engaging dinner conversation: there is no narrator telling you what to think, it is not a film of fear of the end time or accusation, it is an invitation to sit at the table and join an in depth conversation about our diverse and plural world.
MassHousing, One Beacon Street, 4th Floor, Boston, MA
“The film, NEIGHBORS: CONSERVATION IN A CHANGING COMMUNITY (1977) examines the challenges and opportunities of neighborhood revitalization through the stories of 12 South End residents. The older, working class population is juxtaposed with the more affluent newcomers who are attracted by the prime location and historic architecture as well as the ethnic mix of the neighborhood. While documenting the differences among these residents, the film also reveals their common goals – to make their neighborhood a better place to live. The film remains remarkably relevant for 21st century audiences.”
On December 4, 2014, MIT’s Energy for Human Development (e4Dev) group, the MIT Libraries, and the Urban Film Series will be hosting a screening of the movie KATIYABAAZ (Powerless):
Thur KATIYABAAZ (Powerless): In Kanpur, India, an electricity thief provides Robin Hood style services to the poor in the face of day long power-cuts. With the first female chief of the electricity company vowing to eliminate all illegal connections, the lines are drawn for a battle over electricity. In a summer of crisis, both come to terms with India’s energy poverty. Refreshments will be provided! 6pm, MIT Room 3–133. Info: e4Devfirstname.lastname@example.org
Happy September and welcome (back) to the new school year. We’ve finalized the line-up for our Fall 2014 MIT Urban Planning Film Series, listed below. This semester, we’ll be featuring an earthquake in China, a rebellion in Newark, informal housing in NYC, and ending the semester with a special showing of Roberto Rossellini’s 1945 classic, ROME OPEN CITY. We continue our partnership with PBS/POV American Documentary to bring some special community screenings to the Boston area.
Thur 9/4 FALLEN CITY (2014): In today’s go-go China, an old city completely destroyed by a devastating earthquake can be rebuilt — boasting new and improved civic amenities — in an astoundingly quick two years. But, as FALLEN CITY reveals, the journey from the ruined old city of Beichuan to the new Beichuan nearby is long and heartbreaking for the survivors. Three families struggle with loss — most strikingly the loss of children and grandchildren — and feelings of loneliness, fear and dislocation that no amount of propaganda can disguise. First-time director Qi Zhao offers an intimate look at a country torn between tradition and modernity. Official Selection of the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. A co-production of ITVS International. A co-presentation with the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM). Directed by Qi Zhao; presented in collaboration with the award-winning documentary series PBS/POV American Documentary. 60 minutes. 6pm, MIT Room 3–133.
Thur 9/18 REVOLUTION ’67 (2007): An illuminating account the black urban rebellions of the 1960s. Focusing on the six-day Newark, N.J., outbreak in mid-July, REVOLUTION ’67 reveals how the disturbances began as spontaneous revolts against poverty and police brutality and ended as fateful milestones in America’s struggles over race and economic justice. Voices from across the spectrum—activists Tom Hayden and Amiri Baraka, journalist Bob Herbert, Mayor Sharpe James, and other officials, National Guardsmen, and Newark citizens—recall lessons as hard-earned then as they have been easy to neglect since. A co-production with the Independent Television Service (ITVS); presented in collaboration with the award-winning documentary series PBS/POV American Documentary. 90 minutes. 6pm, MIT Room 3–133.
Thur 10/2 KOCH (2012): New York City mayors have a world stage on which to strut, and they have made legendary use of it. Yet few have matched the bravado, combativeness and egocentricity that Ed Koch brought to the office during his three terms from 1978 to 1989. As Neil Barsky’s KOCH recounts, Koch was more than the blunt, funny man New Yorkers either loved or hated. Elected in the 1970s during the city’s fiscal crisis, he was a new Democrat for the dawning Reagan era—fiscally conservative and socially liberal. KOCH finds the former mayor politically active to the end (he died in 2013)—still winning the affection of many New Yorkers while driving others to distraction. Directed by Neil Barasky; presented in collaboration with the award-winning documentary series PBS/POV American Documentary. 90 minutes. 6pm, MIT Room 3–133.
Thur 10/9: DARK DAYS (2000) Independent filmmaker Marc Singer explores the underground world inhabited by residents of New York’s underground tunnels. Music by DJ Shadow. 6pm, MIT Room 3–133.
Thur 11/13 ROME OPEN CITY (1945): A harrowing drama about the Nazi occupation of Rome and the brave few who struggled against it, ROME OPEN CITY is a shockingly authentic experience, conceived and directed amid the ruin of World War II, with immediacy in every frame. Marking a watershed moment in Italian cinema, this galvanic work garnered awards around the globe and left the beginnings of a new film movement in its wake. Directed by Roberto Rossellini. 100 minutes. 6pm, MIT Room 3–133.