The 5 Films In The First-Ever Bethesda Documentary Festival


  The stories of an undocumented Montgomery County student striving for a college degree, a group of Washington, D.C. neighbors who get together for a one-of-a-kind block party, a D.C. native who returns home to find gentrification, a Junior Olympic boxing champion and a high school dropout-turned New Orleans street performer will all be shown in the Bethesda Urban Partnership's first-ever Bethesda film fest. A panel of judges for the short documentary festival, set for Saturday, March 23 at Imagination Stage (4908 Auburn Ave.), selected the five films with area ties after putting out word about the event last fall. Tickets are $10 and more information can be found on BUP's website: Baffle their Minds with Bullsh*t, Kerry Leigh (11 minutes) Film by Isabelle Carbonell, director/cinematographer/editor, and Sarah Cannon, film and video editor, Izaca Productions, Washington, DC High school dropout-turned busker, Kerry Leigh’s imagination is for rent on the streets of New Orleans. Into the Lime Light (16 minuntes, 37 seconds) Film by Deanne Canieso, John Dillon, George Washington University Institute for Documentary Filmmaking Into the Lime Lite follows a two-time Junior Olympic Champion from D.C. as he prepares to fight a tough opponent from Northern Ireland in the Belfast-Beltway Boxing Classic. He’s on a solid path but his involvement in a fight almost gets in his way. The Plan (15 minutes) Film by Rachel Jones, senior film major at Maryland Institute College of Art, Baltimore A young woman returns to Washington, D.C. after graduate school and finds that her old neighborhood has been changed by gentrification. Porchfest (8 minutes) Film by Brandon Kramer, filmmaker, educator and co-founder of Meridian Hill Pictures, and Lance Kramer, filmmaker, journalist, co-founder of Meridian Hill Pictures production company, Washington, D.C. Porchfest tells the story of Hobart Street in Mt. Pleasant as it puts on a rich, vibrant showcase of a diverse community’s food, art, music, culture and history. Rights of Butterflies (19 minutes) Film by Lara Moya, Laurel Gwizdak, Sandrine Emambu, Binyam Hundito, Zaid Jameel, Alan Marroquin, members of Gandhi Brigade, Silver Spring nonprofit that uses media training to teach leadership and social justice to young people. Katya is an undocumented student in Montgomery County struggling to fund and continue her college education due to her legal status. We learn about Katya’s personal sacrifices in coming to the United States, where she constructs a new sense of home and her perseverance to achieve her ambitions and finish her education. Photos via Bethesda Urban Partnership

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