My friends and I took to the West Village of Manhattan at the intersection of Christopher Street and Gay Street to document the festivities at the Gay Pride Parade. We set up just a stone’s throw from the former Stonewall Inn, where a police riot in 1969 thrust the GLBT movement out of the shadows and into the American conscience. It may seem like a slow progress of acceptance, but sometimes the turning points in history seem so recent.
Public Interest Pictures and PAY 2 PLAY are proud to present this American tale of greed, power, and family.
Premiering at Netroots Nation 2012 in Rhode Island, here is the opening ten minutes of our documentary PAY 2 PLAY, which has been underway for six years.
We are raising money through Kickstarter to finish the film before the elections, and need your help to get this out!
The 2012 campaign may have already reached an apex of agape anticipation at what Mitt Romney is about to subject himself to.
In an economy run into the ground by Bush’s $2 trillion tax cuts, after the unrelenting arrogance of Speaker John Boehner’s sole recovery strategy to continually tweet “Where are the jobs?” he has an answer: about 2 million more of them in the last six months, according to the latest jobs report.
It gets worse for the corporate raider that made mountains of money from firing people at other companies. The most talked about moment from the Super Bowl today is not Madonna or Manning but Clint Eastwood, and his Oscar-winning skills waxing a thank you from Detroit to Obama for keeping the auto industry (and its jobs) alive. So stirring and inspiring was this Republican filmmaker’s ode to Obama that Karl Rove, the master of anonymous attack ads and Super PAC media saturation, scoffed that he was offended by the Chrysler spot. Clint Eastwood and Halftime in America were trending the next morning on Twitter over anything else Super Bowl related, including the hash tag “#SuperBowl.” Read More
Though the manifold problems of money pouring into our campaigns have become a source of daily news and mounting public backlash, the anniversary of the Supreme Court’s ruling in Citizens United vs. Federal Elections Commission is an opportunity to review how this transformative decision was reached – the perfect storm of politicized jurisprudence, corporate entitlement, and a narrowly tilted bench.
As Chief Justice, John Roberts has expressed such concern over corporate rights, one might think he was found as a boy abandoned, taken in, and raised by some corporations. It was Roberts who directed the narrow issue of FEC penalties over ads for Hillary: The Movie to be rewritten and re-argued as a much broader debate over the right for corporations to spend money freely on third party advertisements.
The murky reasoning in the 5-4 decision is a swirl of citations to numerous codes that apparently somehow offer sufficient paradox that a century of laws passed by lawmakers over generations of Congress that restrictions on the federal and state level had to be knocked down, leaving almost no sense of legal authority on the subject.
How has this decision stood, two years later? Well, people have literally been taking to the streets across the country in outrage over this decision and corporate influence on public policy. In fact, this decidedly undemocratic ruling — five opinions against American law and overwhelming public opinion — has been such a galvanizing injection into the populace, Citizens United vs. FEC may prove to be the birth to an era of reform. Read More
This year during the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, amongst the corporate carpet bombing of branded swag up and down Main Street, there will be a venue for voices other than studio buzz machines, celebrity side projects, and gossip columnists. While the exclusivity of the Sundance Film Festival has long fostered start-up film fests to showcase other independent films alongside the star-studded lineup, this year brings a new kind of screening event to the cinephile maelstrom.
Filmmaker Donn “D.J.” Viola was struck by the odds of inclusion in the coveted landmark independent film festival: Out of 11,700 entries, only 180 were chosen, 1.538%. Parallel to the Occupy Movement’s empowering the bottom 99%, Viola sought to provide some kind of platform for the approximately 32 films made every day of the last year.
Going further, such a context could allow for more political films than might usually be included in the crop of Sundance selections. While Sundance has long been a strong supporter of environmental topics, the timeliness of a film festival is a unique challenge — where the transformative Occupy Wall Street movement sprung up in October and swept the national discourse, the deadline for submissions to Sundance was in September. Read More
Sunday, Jan. 8, will be the final day of Mr. Brainwash’s Art Show 2011, an exhibition which has drawn thousands each day to behold the childlike imagination of Thierry Guetta. This abandoned industrial space also happens to be adorned with a significant contribution from the street art community of Los Angeles, after Brainwash allowed 20,000 square feet of the ground floor to be entirely covered with other people’s posters, paintings, stickers and spray paint.
This mammoth art show will not be viewable somewhere else down the line. In fact, after this last day of viewing, the building is reportedly slated to be demolished. Street art is not intended to last, and here it won’t even last inside an empty building. Read More
2011 has been a pivotal, inspiring year, and a turning point promising big things for 2012. And it’s maybe because people were broke and taking to the streets that, culturally, 2011 was somewhat uneventful. I suspect 2012 will bring the creative explosion of a culture reignited by shared awareness and new-found confidence. But looking back at 2011, the seeds of a cultural revolution did not seem to be penetrating the airwaves.
But where most of Hip Hop seemed to descend into a clatter of techno-fused beats and hooks about either partying in the club or partying in the strip club, there stood out a surprisingly positive groove that seems to best put a face on this year of the Occupy genesis.
Weaving an interpolation of Modest Mouse’s 2004 upbeat hit “Float On,” Lupe Fiasco uses his verses to unify the impoverished and privileged alike, urging courage to resist everyday oppressors, drawing strength from both childhood dreams and the power that a rarefied performer gets to observe when audiences are chanting his lyrics back to him around the world. Read More