Best Video Film and Cultural Center, Ignite the Light, and Spring Glen Church in collaboration with the Hamden Dept. of Arts and Culture are excited to host the Hamden Black Film Mini-Series and Discussion event. The series consists of three, Black-centered movies with universal themes of love, heroes, loss, immigration and more followed by community discussion with keynote speakers relating each movie to the issues, experiences, joys, struggles and achievements of the Black community in Hamden. Attendees are invited to come for the movies and stay for discussion if interested, otherwise, come out and enjoy films together in the company of community.
The first screening, of “42: The Jackie Robinson Story,” took place on Sept. 17, and “Brown Sugar” was shown Sept. 25.
All movies will be presented outdoors with social distancing on the lawn at Spring Glen Church, 1825 Whitney Avenue. The program starts at 6:30 PM.
The final film in this mini-series will be Saturday, October 3rd, Spike Lee’s “Do the Right Thing.”
Dr. Don C. Sawyer III will introduce and keynote the discussion of “Do the right thing.” Dr. Sawyer is the Vice President for Equity and Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer at Quinnipiac University in Hamden, Connecticut. He is a tenured associate professor in the department of sociology, criminal justice, and anthropology as well as assistant clinical professor in the Frank H. Netter, MD, School of Medicine. He teaches courses on Race, Education, Popular Culture, Social Research Methods, and Visual Sociology, including the university’s first course dedicated to the sociological study of hip-hop culture. He earned his Ph.D. and M.A. in Sociology and M.S. in Cultural Foundations of Education from Syracuse University and a B.A. in Psychology from Hartwick College. His scholarly focus is on race, social justice, urban education, hip-hop culture, and the experiences of formerly incarcerated citizens.
I have been given only a few filmgoing experiences in my life to equal the first time I saw “Do the Right Thing.” Most movies remain up there on the screen. Only a few penetrate your soul. In May of 1989 I walked out of the screening at the Cannes Film Festival with tears in my eyes. Spike Lee had done an almost impossible thing. He’d made a movie about race in America that empathized with all the participants. He didn’t draw lines or take sides but simply looked with sadness at one racial flashpoint that stood for many others.
This event is free and open to the public. Registration is not required but an RSVP to the Facebook event is appreciated. Please RSVP to this invitation so we may estimate the number of potential attendees (and calculate available lawn space).