Kay Bourne Arts Report – Issue #87

Contents

“NIGHT CATCHES US” ON BIG SCREEN IN BOSTON

DAVENPORT: FROM “NEIGHBORS” TO “BROKE- OLOGY”

DRUMMING, MUSIC AND ALVIN TERRY IN RUINED

WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO……

BILL T. JONES’ “BODY AGAINST BODY” AT THE ICA

RICK BERRY ART AT NORTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY

SOUTH AFRICAN ART AT B.U. PART OF TIM HAMILL SERIES

HATIAN ARTIST EXHIBITS AT THE MIDDLE EAST

Guided visit of the Museum of the NCAAA

5 PLAYWRIGHTS: LOVE LIKE THEY SEE IT AT BOSTON U.


“NIGHT CATCHES US” ON BIG SCREEN IN BOSTON

d4aaa985416ecae36acb86df785ab6a8.124.82 Kay Bourne Arts Report   Issue #87 (pictured: Kerry Washington and Anthony Mackie)

African American filmmaker Tanya Hamilton finds a mystery in recent history with her fictional “Night Catches Us.” At the height of the Black Panther movement in Philadelphia, a policeman is shot, a Black Panther lies dead in a shoot-out with the police, and an activist leaves town under the cloud of suspicion that he fingered the Panther’s where-abouts. .

Ten years later, Marcus returns.

The Color of Film Collaborative in association with The Roxbury International Film Festival (with Future Boston Alliance and Night Life Executives) premieres the New England screening of “Night Catches Us,” directed and written by Tanya Hamilton.

The urban family drama starring Anthony Mackie and Kerry Washington will screen in a commercial theater for one night only. The film event takes place Thursday, Jan. 27 at 7:30 is at The Stuart Street Playhouse, 200 Stuart St., downtown Boston theater district.

“We live in a world where we continue to combat a lot of the issues that the Black Panthers were concerned about,” filmmaker Hamilton told the KBAR in a recent phone conversation about why she believes her movie has relevance to today.

She also wanted to tell a story that contains the Panthers’ concern for “the idea of community, a movie that gives a voice to the people who are working class and working poor.” Other concerns she admires in the Panthers’ ideals was their interest in health and how to manage health issues on a community level; how to address poverty, “alleviating it and the need for it, and their belief in getting legal aid to people who can’t afford lawyers.”

In the movie, Patricia, played by Kerry Washington, moves throughout the community in her role as a lawyer for little or no recompense. She, like the Panthers with their free breakfast for children, provides neighborhood children with milk and cereal and juice at her kitchen table. (Interestingly, many of the ideas thought up by the Black Panthers later became government services, such as breakfast in schools for children below the poverty line).

“The role of women seemed largely to be as workers for the Party,” comments Hamilton, who adds that Patricia, as with the other characters, however is not a stereotype but multi-dimensional.

Another character points up an aspect of the Panthers less commented on, “as men to look up to by young people who were fatherless,” she said. This aspect is revealed in the character of Jimmy, played by Amari Cheatom. Other principals in the drama are Jamie Hector as DoRight and Wendell Pierce as Detective Gordon.

Filmmaker Hamilton says she “finds their world fascinating. There’s a great humanity in it and it is an under-told story which has been misrepresented as one-dimensional.”

She also finds fascinating in the Black Panthers story, “the idea of being at war yet in your own neighborhood and your own country.”

Hamilton, 42, was born in Spanish Town, which is about 20 minutes outside of Kingston, Jamaica. Her mom brought her and her brother here in the 70ties where they settled in Silver Springs, Maryland. She attend Cooper Union and went on to graduate school at Columbia where she majored in painting (the design of her scenes in “Night Catches Us” reflects her original passion).

Two of Hamilton’s films have been shown at the Roxbury Film Festival, but Color of Film Collaborative’s founder and artistic director Lisa Simmons says that by July of this year “Night Catches Us” will already be out on DVD (as part of Magnolia Pictures distribution). “We wanted to give people the opportunity to see the film on a big screen, as well as, create a buzz for the festival coming this summer.”

By Kay Bourne


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