While many movies seek to provide a simple escape from reality, the UDC Firebird Film Festival’s stated mission is “to be an innovator in educating and encouraging social, cultural, economic and political awareness amongst the UDC student body and D.C. community.” This year’s festival, which runs from Oct. 29 to Nov. 4, centers on a theme of “Justice,” and includes a mix of fiction and documentary films that tackle some of the most compelling human and civil rights concerns of our times. The series is intended to promote tolerance and understanding, and to initiate open and meaningful discussions about important issues and ideas that shape our lives.
The six films in the line-up – including the commercial blockbusters “Black Panther” and “Selma,” and the award-winning “Fruitvale Station” – explore a diverse range of issues from civil rights to ethnic profiling and criminal justice inequities, health disparities to higher mortality rates, and the ongoing and recently volatile debate of race in America.
“While there are plenty of opportunities to see films, there are very few chances to have open conversations about the making of a film or the subject matter presented,” said UDC President Ronald Mason, Jr. “This collection of films offers rich insight into our society and is aimed to make us think, awaken our conscience, denounce injustice and reflect the social and cultural diversity of humanity. UDC is proud to make them available to the public.”
All films will be screened at various locations at the UDC Van Ness campus, and each film will be accompanied by special guest introductions and post-screening discussions to explore the cultural, historical and social issues presented on the screen. See the full schedule at https://www.udc.edu/udcfilmfestival/, then get your popcorn – and your thinking caps – ready!