When: Wed., Jan. 11, 7 p.m. 2017
This timely, 1979 feature film by director Haile Gerima, which was part of the L.A. Rebellion movement of political and experimental black cinema during the 1970s, explores the harsh realities of urban poverty and the systemic imprisonment of African American men, which continues today in record numbers. Recently, Selma director Ava DuVernay’s critically acclaimed Netflix documentary 13th made some major waves surrounding America’s racist history and pointed out why the U.S. prison system should be considered the new form of slavery. In Bush Mama, Gerima, who is currently a film professor at Howard University, tells the story in narrative form by following Dorothy (Barbara O. Jones), a welfare recipient living in ’70s-era Watts, California, who is fighting to survive with a young daughter and an unborn child while her veteran husband T.C. (Johnny Weathers) is wrongly incarcerated for a crime he didn’t commit. The film is presented by the NOOMO Speaker’s Bureau and CULTUREworks Enterprises as part of DreamWeek. On January 19, Gerima will join audiences at the Carver Community Cultural Center for a screening of his 1993 film Sankofa on the Atlantic slave trade.