On the night of September 24th, with the evening air taking on a fall chill and clear skies over the sycamore boughs, the Cultural Affairs Committee launched its second outdoor Movie Night devoted to African American filmmaking on the Main Green.
More than sixty people attended a showing of five short films from four neighborhood artists, three of whom live here at the Village Green; the presentation was followed by a short discussion, moderated by the famed director Charles Burnett (“Killer of Sheep,” 1978; “To Sleep With Anger,” 1990).
this, it was an occasion to see four stellar, confident films from immensely talented artists who happen to be out neighbors.
Three of the five films were directed by Marshall Tyler and produced by his wife, Moira Griffin, Village Green residents since 2017. These are local films, literally, set in and around the Village Green and South LA. Tyler’s storytelling is spare and deliberate: pacing is one of his evident gifts.
mother, played with solemn grace by Medina Sanghore, attends a real-life support group of parents who have lost their children to gun violence in Los Angeles. Tyler’s success with these shorts has led to directing gigs for episodic television; another of his short films, “Slow Pulse,” is up for Oscar consideration this year.
Adisa Septuri’s artistic career has taken a more unexpected turn. In 2009 Septuri, who lives in Court 8 with his family, wanted to document the grueling lives of children working in Sierra Leone’s diamond mines. Septuri’s role as documentarian shifted when, with a partner, he decided to sponsor a soccer tournament in Bongema for local residents called “A Day Without Mines.” That effort has become a full-fledged philanthropic enterprise—the tournament is an annual event--and Adisa is known as Sahr Bongema, the first son of the village. He will continue to
document his philanthropic efforts.
The last movie, “War Paint,” was a powerful work by Katrelle Kindred, a neighbor up-the-hill, about a young girl navigating the menacing streets. Charles Burnett praised all the work as being remarkably polished, and its directors, he said, showed tremendous talent.
Bravo to the Cultural Affairs Committee for an inspired night of programming!