About This Program
Each year through the lens of 26 independent films, America ReFramed tells the stories of a diverse and transforming America: what makes us different -- race, ethnicity, religion, sexual preference, abilities -- as well as what we share in common. With weekly 60- to 90-minute independent films, followed by provocative conversations led by host/moderator Natasha Del Toro, this weekly series offers an unfiltered look at people rarely given a voice on national television. America ReFramed features personal storytelling often tied to national issues like social injustice.
From examples of unequal access to resources, battles with environmental blight, and a community’s response after a hate crime to tales of contemporary life on Native American reservations, families triumphing over hardships, veterans returning home, and homeless individuals trying to survive -- these personal films document the times in which we live.
Episodes from Season 3
Leaving politics aside, Rodrigo Reyes’s Purgatorio looks anew at the U.S./Mexico border and the people caught in its spell. The evocative Dantesque essay film presents the border as a mythical place exploring the vulnerability of the human soul, the violence man creates and the destruction left in its wake.
Allison Orr found inspiration in the movement of garbage trucks and graceful dynamics of the workers who operate them. She transforms the skepticism and reluctance of her subjects into a complete commitment to dance. On an abandoned runway, the sanitation professionals and their trucks perform a stunning spectacle, awing an audience of thousands.
In Minnesota, devoted doctors in a primary care clinic meet the health care needs of refugees and immigrants wrestling with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as well as chronic and compounded prognoses. In addition to medication, they treat their patients with spoonfuls of hope, cultural competency and compassion.
Gaucho del Norte
Gaucho del Norte tells the story of a Patagonian sheepherder recruited to work in Idaho. The nomadic journey follows Eraldo Pacheco and his herd of more than a thousand sheep across a lonely, rugged landscape. He faces the ups and downs of a psychologically and physically demanding job far away from family, questioning whether or not it's worth it.
In the '80s, the desegregation of U.S. public schools peaked, but since then, schools have become even more segregated (Civil Rights Project). Our Mockingbird highlights the experiences of teens from two Birmingham, Alabama high schools -- one all black and one all white -- who collaborate on a production of the play, “To Kill a Mockingbird.”
Set upon building a new school, New Haven claims eminent domain over the Upper Hill neighborhood. With community leaders and a lawyer, a group of neighbors, mostly low-income African-American families, take the case to court. The Hill is a fascinating look at the complex issues surrounding urban planning, gentrification and economic renewal.
New Orleans is one of the "murder capitals" of the U.S.; statistics show murder rates are 4-6x higher than the national average. 80% of the victims are black males, mostly in their teenage years. Shell Shocked starts at the surface of the teen murder epidemic and delves into the hearts and minds of those whose lives are most deeply impacted.
A Will for the Woods
Musician & psychiatrist Clark Wang prepares for his own green burial while battling lymphoma, determined that his last act will be a gift to the planet. Boldly facing his mortality, Clark and partner Jane have inspired a local cemeterian, and together they aim to use green burial to save a North Carolina woods from being clear-cut.