3rd Annual Prisoners Justice Film Festival
Thursday February 8th to Sunday February 11th, 2007
William Doo Auditorium, University of Toronto
45 Wilcocks Street, New College
All screenings are Pay-What-You-Can
(donations of dictionaries or books about black history and politics for
prisoners are welcome ñ paperback only, please)
Come and join what has quickly become a central space in Toronto to
discuss and learn more about issues relevant to prisons and their effects
on all of us.
As always the festival will include panels made up of people affected by
the prison industry and opportunities to meet other people working for
real justice and prison abolition.
***This year, featuring performances and a prisoners' rights art workshop
with CLIMBING POETREE
Thursday February 8th
SURVIVAL, RESISTANCE AND GLORY: PRISONS AND BLACK COMMUNITIES
The Eyes of the Rainbow: Assata Shakur and Oya, Dir. Gloria Rolando (1997)
A film about Assata Shakur, the Black Panther and Black Liberation Army
leader who escaped from prison and was given political asylum in Cuba,
where she has lived for close to 15 years. In it we visit with Assata in
Havana and she tells us about her history and her life in Cuba. The US
government has issued a $1 million bounty to capture Assata from Cuba.
I Won't Drown On That Levee and You Ain't Gonna Break My Back, Dir. The
Corrections Documentary Project, (2006) 30 minutes
An investigation into Hurricane Katrina, centered on the citys refusal to
evacuate its local prison and the criminalization of storm survivors. The
film looks at not only at the New Orleans Parish Prison, but a broader
climate of racist brutality in the local and federal response to the
The Black Panther Party, the Six Nations Struggle, and the fight to Free
all Political Prisoners. Dir. Tom Keefer (2006) 17 minutes
Robert Seth Hayes is a former member of the Black Panther Party and the
Black Liberation Army who has been imprisoned for the past 33 years. In
this video message he speaks about the Panthers, the struggle of the Six
Nations people and sends a message of solidarity to Trevor Miller, a Six
Nations political prisoner.
Speakers include a representative from the Hands Off Assata Campaign and
Friday February 9th
Toronto Women's Bookstore Film Fest Party
FEATURING PERFORMANCE BY CLIMBING POETREE!!!!
Performance by other local artists
Information about prison related campaigns
WHERE: Toronto Women's Bookstore, 73 Harbord, near Spadina
Saturday February 10th
WOMEN POLITICAL PRISONERS OF IRAN: MEMOIRS, MEMORIES AND ART
From Scream to Scream, Dir. Dr. PanteA Bahrami (2005)
The story of Soudabeh Ardavan, a young woman who spent eight years in jail
for her political activism in Iran. In spite of her confinement, she
producted more than 200 paintings and drawings and smuggled them out.
Speaker: Soudabeh Ardavan and PanteA Bahrami
BEYOND THESE WALLS: A JOURNEY INTO THE LIVES AND STRUGGLES OF WOMEN BEHIND
Life Inside Out, Dir. Sarah Zammit (2005) 72 minutes
This documentary takes us inside the walls of Grand Valley Institution ó
one of five federal prisons for women in Canada. Here, most residents live
in small houses they share with ten or more roommates, in an environment
that is supposed to be more female-friendly than the notorious Kingston
Prison for Women, now shuttered. The first documentary to go behind the
walls of this new breed of prison, Life Inside Out features three
unforgettable women over age 50, doing time in a system that can seem
designed to frustrate and baffle. It's a world where arbitrary decisions,
bureaucratic ineptitude and a Kafkaesque parallel justice system control
every last detail of inmates' lives.
Charisse Shumate: Fighting for our Lives, Dir. Eve Goldberg & Claude Marks
(2005) 37 minutes
Made in collaboration with the California Coalition for Women Prisoners,
the film focuses on the life of Charisse Shumate and other women prisoners
in California. Charisse was a life term prisoner incarcerated for 16 years
at the Central California Women's Facility. She died of complications
from sickle cell anemia, cancer, and hepatitis C. Charisse stepped
forward to defend the rights of women prisoners for health care and
improved conditions inside the jails.
Speaker: Julia Sudbury
RESISTANCE & CREATION: STORIES OF FIRST NATIONS PRISONERS
Patrick Ross, Dir. Ervin Chartrand (2005) 6 minutes
A portrait of ex-prisoner Patrick Ross. At Stoney Mountain Penitentiary
in Manitoba, Ross met artist Terry Southwind, and started to paint. We
watch Patrick create one of his paintings while he shares his thoughts on
his art, his time in jail and his hopes for the future.
504938C, Dir. Ervin Chartrand, 6 minutes
A short drama of a young man Ryan Black coming to grips with the harsh
challenges of his release from prison.
Fire on the Horizon, Blonde Indian Productions (2002), 9 minutes
This is the story of Neal "Patches" Freeland and his journey after many
years of being away and the impact on his friends and family.
Free Trevor Miller: Six Nations Political Prisoner, Community Friends
Productions. / Tom Keefer (2007) 17 minutes
A short film covering the December 9, 2006 protest outside the
Hamilton-Wentworth Detention Centre to free Six Nations Political Prisoner
Speakers: Families of Trevor Miller and Christopher Hill, Neal "Patches"
Freeland, and more.
IN MEMORY OF LATE CREE ARTIST RANDY CHARBONEAU
Sunday February 11th
CREATING THE REVOLUTION: A PRISONERS' RIGHTS ART WORKSHOP WITH CLIMBING
S.T.I.T.C.H.E.D. project by Alixa and Naima, two Brooklyn based artists,
who use art to confront the prison industrial complex.
"Both tragic and uplifting, thoughtful and rousing, Climbing PoeTree's
performance lifts listeners up off their chairs into an uncharted terrain
of power and possibility. Equipped with ink and soul, Alixa and Naima use
their art to expose injustice, heal from violence, and generate vision to
help us all imagine a more just and compassionate world." ñ
WITHOUT TRIAL OR CHARGES: PSYCHIATRIC INCARCERATION
Inquiring Minds, Dir. Jeff Myers (2005) 45 minutes
From the halls of the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education to the
Council Chambers of Toronto City Hall, this documentary follows the
Coalition Against Psychiatric Assault along their journey of organizing
public hearings about people's experiences with psychiatric drugs and
electroshock. As person after person testifies to damage and abuse, a
clear indictment of psychiatry emerges.
Learning Memory, Dir. Liisa Schofield (2006) 24 minutes
This personal film tells the experiences of the director's mom, Paivi, as
she received Electro-Convulsive Therapy (ECT) in 1983-84. It gives
background and history to the controversial treatment and challenges the
current use of ECT as a so-called psychatric 'therapy'.
Speakers: Don Weitz of the Coalition Against Psychiatric Assault, Dorothy
Proctor, and Kim Pate of the Canadian Association of Elizabeth Fry