A Lot Like You

I had the pleasure of meeting Eliaichi Kimaro when she submitted her feature film, A Lot Like You, to the 2012 Mixed Roots Film & Literary Festival. We unfortunately were  unable to fit this terrific documentary into our lineup that year, but Eliaichi lead a workshop on documentary filmmaking that was very well received.

Synopsis for the www.alotlikeyoumovie.com:

Eliaichi Kimaro is a mixed-race, first-generation American with a Tanzanian father and Korean mother. When her parents retire and move back to Tanzania, Eliaichi begins a project that evocatively examines the intricate fabric of multiracial identity, and grapples with the complex ties that children have to the cultures of their parents.

Kimaro decides to document her father’s path back to his family and Chagga culture. In the process, she struggles with her own relationship to Tanzania, and learns more about the heritage that she took for granted as a child. Yet as she talks to more family members, especially her aunts, she uncovers a cycle of violence that resonates with her work and life in the United States. When Kimaro speaks with her parents about the oppression her aunts face, she faces a jarring disconnect between immigrant generations on questions of patriarchy and violence.

Here are some upcoming 2013 performance dates (check the website frequently for more!):

October 23:  ALLY screening/lecture events with filmmaker at University of New England(Maine).

October 17 @ 7pm: Director Eliaichi Kimaro will be speaking at Knox College (Galesburg, IL) Event sponsored by the Center for Intercultural Life.

October 15-16:  ALLY screening/panel/lecture events with filmmaker at DePaul University(Chicago), including Laura Kina‘s class on Mixed Race Art and Identity.

October 14:  ALLY screening/lecture at Lincoln Land Community College (Springfield, IL)

October 8 @ 6:30pm:  Vancouver Asian Film Festival presents A Lot Like You screening + discussion w/Director Eliaichi Kimaro.  Alice MacKay room, Vancouver Public Library.

October 2 A Lot Like You screening & discussion w/filmmaker at California State University–San Marcos.  Sponsored by Gender Equity Center and LGBTQA Pride Center.

October 1@ 7pm:  A Lot Like You screening & discussion w/filmmaker at University of Redlands (Orton Center).

September 19 @ 7:30pm:  Director Eliaichi Kimaro will be presenting at the 2013 Critical Ethnic Studies Conference, sponsored by The Institute For Research on Race and Public Policy at The University of Illinois At Chicago.

September 18 @ 7:30pm:  Director Eliaichi Kimaro will speak at Venango College (PA) at the Rhoades Center (following ALLY campus screening on 9/16).

Support Toasted Marshmallows Indiegogo Campaign

I had the pleasure of meeting Marcelitte Failla when we screened her film, Uncovering Color, at the Mixed Roots Film & Literary Festival®. I got to meet Anoushka – the other filmmaker behind this project – at the 2012 Critical Mixed Race Studies conference. Both women are smart, passionate and talented, and I’m really excited about this project which is precisely the kind of work we are here to promote. Here’s their Indiegogo campaign link: http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/toasted-marshmallows

And a short paragraph on the project:

Toasted Marshmallows is a film, performance and community building project chronicling two mixed-race women’s attempt at uncovering the cultures we were separated from. Anoushka Ratnarajah and Marcelitte Failla grew up far from the curry and gumbo that stewed on their grandmothers stove. On our journey to regain what was lost, we will meet and interview other mixed-women and ask what it means to be “authentically” rooted in one’s culture and how we maintain ties in a world of assimilation.

Jeff Chiba Stearns – Filmmaker

Jeff Chiba Stearns is a multi award-winning animation and documentary filmmaker.  Born in Kelowna, BC, of Japanese and European heritage, he graduated from the Emily Carr University of Art and Design with a degree in Film Animation in 2001. Soon after he founded Meditating Bunny Studio Inc., a Vancouver based boutique animation studio specializing in the creation of animated, documentary, and experimental films aimed at both children and adults that combine different philosophical and social elements together to create humorous, entertaining, and inspiring stories.  The studio also specializes in the creation of innovative stop motion and classically animated commercials and has created broadcast spots and viral videos for Sharpie, Anythink, Living Blueprint, Generali, Ministry of Health BC, 3M International, and Post-it Note.  His animated shorts, Kip and Kyle (2000), The horror of Kindergarten (2001), What Are You Anyways?(2005), Yellow Sticky Notes (2007), and Ode to a Post-it Note (2010) have screened in hundreds of film festivals around the world, garnered 32 awards, and broadcast on the CBC, Discovery Latin America, Sundance Channel, Movie Central, Encore Ave., Shaw, and Movieola.

“Kin” or (킨)

“Kin” or (킨) is a short film that tells the story of 21 year old Afro-Korean Jake. Jake’s African-American mother sends him to Korea soon after he turns 16 in hopes that he will learn more about his “other” culture and finally meet his Korean father. Five years later, Jake still remains confused about his identity, relationship with his father, and struggles with feeling isolated in the homogeneous society of Korea. Here’s their facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Kinthemovie?ref=hl

Colour Me

Dir. Sherien Barsoum. 2011, 78 minutes, documentary

Colour Me is a feature documentary that follows motivational speaker Anthony McLean as he mentors high school students in Brampton, a city in Southern Ontario, Canada. Filmmaker Barsoum captures McLean’s fluid notions of ‘racial’ identity as he works with the students, and also explores his own family’s origins. Highly suitable for middle and high school aged classes.

Here’s a trailer for the film: