Sankofa Screens At Hirshon Film Festival

Sankofa is a handsome, urgent slave’s eye view of slavery. Its vantage point is one you’ve never seen from Hollywood, and probably won’t. Cinematically, Sankofa is every bit as rich as The Color Purple, but the similarities end there. Its strength is that it’s not like a Hollywood film. This means it plays out more slowly than Hollywood’s fast-paced industrial products. Sometimes it drags. But it never releases its grip on you,, writes Jay Carr of the Boston Globe.

On Wednesday, March 10, at 7:00 p.m., the 2010 Dorothy H. Hirshon Film Festival begins in Wollman Hall, 65 West 11th Street, 5th floor, as Michelle Materre, assistant professor of Media Studies and Film at The New School introduces director-in-residence Haile Gerima who will screen his 1993 classic film Sankofa.

After the film, Gerima will show excerpts of his newest film, TEZA and discuss his work. Gerima is an Ethiopian film director, screenwriter, writer, producer, and philosopher. He is one of a handful of African filmmakers to earn international fame. He has been a professor of film at Howard University in Washington, DC, since 1975.

Established by a bequest from the late Dorothy Hirshon, a trustee of The New School for 61 years, this annual event promotes excellence and education in filmmaking. The theme of the eighth Hirshon Film Festival is working outside the Hollywood system while creating socially conscious film. The festival will continue on April 23 with a retrospective of Gerima’s work and an interview with cultural critic and Lang College faculty member Margo Jefferson.