Pixel Tracker

Wednesday, December 19 , 2018, 8:00 am | Fair 40º



March 4, 2016 from 7:00pm - 10:00pm

Join us for an evening featuring Bush Mama, the breathtaking 1975 film by Haile Gerima. A rare screening of the recently-restored 16mm film will be followed by a conversation led by UCSB Department of Film and Media Studies Professors Anna Everett and Ross Melnick with Dr. Jan-Christopher Horak, Director of the UCLA Film and Television Archive and co-editor of the recent collection documenting the archive’s restoration of this and other LA Rebellion films.

With Bush Mama, director Haile Gerima—a key member of the influential independent film movement referred to as the LA Rebellion—offers a deeply moving portrait of Dorothy (Barbara O. Jones), beset on all sides by injustices and cruelty, most often through state-appointed agents who harass her, her child and her partner, T.C. (Johnny Weathers). T.C.’s incarceration for a crime he did not commit, and the ramifications both direct and indirect that ripple out from this trauma, including daily abuse meted out by the state and her community ultimately catalyze Dorothy’s ideological transformation

Bush Mama is a powerful critique of the systemic historical injustices of African American life, set in Los Angeles of the mid-seventies: poverty, unequal treatment under the medical and criminal justice systems, police brutality, disenfranchisement, and alienation figure prominently in this tragic, but ultimately hopeful film. Shot on 16mm, and opening with documentary footage of the LAPD harassing Gerima and his crew during the making of the film, Bush Mama is a crucial work in terms of American alternatives to classical Hollywood, Black auteur cinema, and American social and political discourse.


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