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Workers Unite Film Festival: Musicians’ Night
May 6, 2017 @ 4:30 am - 11:00 pm
Workers Unite Film Festival presents an evening of film, music and activism with screenings and discussions of:
Goodnight Moon – Musician Jeremy Bacon is devastated when he receives a letter informing him that his wife will not be permitted to return home due to travel restrictions affecting her country of birth. He attempts to lose himself in music in order to cope, turning his piano into a shrine to her, but he is ultimately moved by his despair to visit the U.S. Custom House, performing a symbolic act of protest against inhumane immigration policies. There, he encounters looming classical sculptures depicting mankind’s historical diaspora from Africa, Asia, Europe and finally the Americas. (2017, 5 min; World Premiere)
25 Tracks – It’s 2011 and Twentyfive, two unknown, indie songwriters, plan to write, record then release a fresh song every two weeks of the year in in a bare bones studio in the industrial west of Melbourne – Australia’s music capital. They have a studio set-up which is a piece of Melbourne history – a 1957 train carriage, lovingly restored, fitted out with a Tiki Bar. Cath loves pop, Nick loves garage rock. She wants jazz flute, he wants a dirty guitar. Is this ever going to work? Are they totally deluded? Is it an impossible goal? (2016, 53 min; U.S. Premiere)
Mike Morningstar: Here’s to The Working Man – The remarkable career of singer/songwriter, Mike Morningstar, who began his musical career at the age of 16 in his native West Virginia, shortly before being drafted to the Vietnam War. Decades later, he describes his wartime experience, and PTSD, through song. Other songs describe the plight of the working man and the environmental destruction coal mining brought to his beloved home state. (2017, 1 hr 17 min)
Cab Elvis – Dave Groh, a cab driver who dresses like Elvis, finds himself not only in a battle with the city of Seattle but also the dark side of Elvis. (2016, 10 min)
Thirsty – Where does a drag queen come from? A bullied boy from the projects finds his voice. (2016, 1 hr 37 min)
Honk! A Festival Of Activist Street Bands – Honk! is a festival of activist street bands who reclaim public spaces with their brash sound, political messages, and outrageous community oriented performances. (2016, 7 min)
They Will Have to Kill Us First: Malian Music In Exile – A feature-length documentary following musicians in Mali in the wake of a jihadist takeover and subsequent banning of music. Music, one of the most important forms of communication in Mali, disappeared overnight in 2012 when Islamic extremists groups rose up to capture an area the size of the UK and France combined. But rather than lay down their instruments, Mali’s musicians fought back. This event is organized in support of the Music In Exile Fellowship Fund (2015, 1 hr 30 min)
Now in its 6th year, the annual Workers Unite Film Festival brings together activists, academics and filmmakers of all ages and backgrounds for a celebration of social justice and the arts. Through dozens of documentary screenings, community forums, and interactive events across New York City, the festival provides working people with a platform to tell their stories while leading a movement for meaningful change.