Category Archives: Documentaries

“The Invisible War” and the Ongoing Subjugation of Women in America

Congratulations to director Kirby Dick and producer Any Ziering for the pickup of their powerful new doc The Invisible War by Cinedigm Entertainment Group and New Video. I saw the film at Sundance and in addition to being a great film, it’s extraordinarily important in these times of increasing violence against and institutionalized subjugation of women. [Trailer and other videos at the bottom.]

In my wrap of the 2012 Sundance Film Festival I wrote of the film: “A heart-breaking and shocking look at rape in the military, Dick’s film details the pain, shame, horror and lasting damage caused by the attacks as well as the shocking hypocrisy and cover-ups endorsed by the military establishment.”

Some stats from the US Department of Defense:
20% of ALL servicewomen have been sexually assaulted while serving.
Women who have been raped in the military have a PTSD rate higher than men in combat.
An estimated 500,000 women have been sexually assaulted in the US military.
In 2010, according to the Department of Defense, there were 3,158 case of sexual assault within the U.S. military. It is estimated that more than 80% of those who are sexually assaulted don’t report it.

The film presents many more statistics, equally as disturbing.

While the subject matter is grim and at times the film is emotionally tough to watch, I will categorically say that this is a film everyone must see, especially educators. It’s a film that could potentially cause a sea change not only in the halls of Congress but in the high schools of America.

At the Q&A following the Sundance world premiere, a 17 year-old young woman in the audience stood up and said that while she had never been physically assaulted, verbal abuse was the norm in her school and she felt that every high school student needed to see the film because boys were not being raised to respect women. It was another poignant moment in the most emotional Q&A I have ever witnessed.

Continue reading “The Invisible War” and the Ongoing Subjugation of Women in America

Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory – An Amazing Screening

On Monday night I was among a relatively privileged few that were invited to a special screening of Joe Berlinger and Bruce Sinofsky’s Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory that was held at CAA, with Berlinger and one of the West Memphis 3, Jason Baldwin, in attendance for a Q&A, following the screening.

After seeing the Paradise Lost films and knowing the story, just seeing Jason out of prison and as a grown man, hearing him speak about life before, during and after his incarceration…I can’t really describe the feelings. Relief at their release, anger at the State of Arkansas and a profound sadness that things like this, the railroading of three young men in such a brazen and disgusting manner can and do happen in the United States.

The film airs tonight at 9pm on HBO. Watch it, you’ll thank me!

Here are a couple of short videos from the Q&A. IN the first, Jason talks a little bit about life after prison and in the second he touches on just a couple of things that he’s noticed in his day-to-day life after prison.

The Black List: Vol. 1 Hits The Mark-Latest Docsider Post

My latest post over at Docsider, the new blog I am writing for indieWIRE and SnagFilms.
Timothy Greenfield-Sanders and Elvis Mitchell have collaborated on a fantastic film called The Black List: Vol. 1 and it’s really a special film. Check out some of my thoughts on the film and a pic from a recent special screening held by HBO.