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The Human Family presents Our Right to Gaze: Black Film Identities, a collection of six shorts where filmmakers gaze at themselves and their world, attempting to make sense of what they see reflected back.

From gripping drama to heart-warming comedy, Our Right to Gaze: Black Film Identities features timely stories from Black artists that take us outside of the ordinary.

Our Right to Gaze will be available on-demand from Sunday, February 14 to Sunday, February 28. Watch the 82-minute collection of films at your leisure from the comfort of your home.

Trailer for Our Right to Gaze: Black Film identities

THE FILMS

Love in Submission

Love in Submission

by Antu Yacob & Lande Yoosuf

 

A Hollywood Party

A Hollywood Party

by Toryn Seabrooks

Pandemic Chronicles

Pandemic Chronicles

by Ya’ke Smith

Auntie Zariyah

Auntie Zariyah

by Zora Bikangaga

Zach crashes with an auntie he’s never met before and soon finds out that Auntie Zariyah is a 12-year-old influencer.

The Black Banshee

The Black Banshee

by Kyla Sylvers

Convinced by her friends and boyfriend to enjoy a night out after losing her job, Yvie begins to question her own mind when the visions she’s been having start to have dangerous consequences.

Nowhere

Nowhere

by Lin Que Ayoung

 

About

Full Spectrum Features (Chicago), Northwest Film Forum (Seattle), The Luminal Theater (NYC), and Circle Collective(NYC) seek to champion Our Right to Gaze as a means of addressing systemic inequity within the film industry through the disruption of existing film distribution models and attitudes towards artist services and support. 

The program is also designed to support the participating filmmakers first and foremost – structured so that they receive adequate compensation for their work, have the option to participate in a mentorship cohort, and have the collective support of the cross-country coalition of media partners. 

Through a mission-driven desire to highlight unseen voices and present a program that steps outside of impersonal plug-and-play virtual distribution models, the collection will rely on the film exhibition and distribution expertise of the participating organizations to engage a broad constituency of exhibitors and mentors via grassroots outreach, personal relationships, and direct conversation with the artists.

The Human Family is proud to bring their efforts and these collections of films to audiences in North Dakota.

STATEMENT FROM THE CURATOR

The “Paradox of Expectation”…it’s the idea that wanting to rid yourself of expectations is a paradox – literally the expectation of no expectation. In these six films from emerging Black filmmakers, what the protagonists experience as the world they woke up to is not the one from which they’re now appearing. Are they lying to themselves about who they are, or is the truth just not what they expect, but what they deserve?

– Curtis Caesar John, The Luminal Theater

Filmmakers Forum

On Saturday, February 20, 2020, Frederick Edwards facilitated a conversation with producer/actress Kyla Sylvers and writer/director Lande Yoosuf about empowerment through story.

The interactive conversation centered around their work and experiences in the film industry, and on the importance of the Black voice in media to challenge and dismantle stereotypes created and perpetuated in a cis-gendered white male-dominated culture.

Both Sylvers and Yoosuf have short films in “Our Right to Gaze: Black Film Identities,” a collection of six short films that invite filmmakers to gaze at themselves and their world and attempt to make sense of what they see reflected.

From gripping drama to hear-warming comedy, “Our Right to Gaze” features timely stories from Black and Queer artists that take us outside of the ordinary.