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Is That Black Enough for You?!? - 25th Indie Memphis Film Festival lineup
Harry Belafonte in Elvis Mitchell’s Is That Black Enough for You?!?

Indie Memphis Film Festival celebrates its 25th Anniversary from October 19th through 24th on the ground in Memphis, as well as virtually, with an intensely varied international lineup of new films, most of which with filmmakers in-person, as well as revival screenings that celebrate Memphis’ rich cultural history, and incredible restorations of film classics.

This year’s Opening Night Film will be Phil Bertelsen’s The Picture Taker, chronicling the life of FBI informant and civil rights photographer Ernest Withers; Bertelsen will appear in-person for a Q&A following the screening. The Closing Night Film will be Elvis Mitchell’s Is That Black Enough for You?!?, a look at the Black revolution in 1970s cinema, from genre films to social realism, to the making of new auteurs and superstars. Mitchell returns to the festival to present his personal documentary, fresh off the New York Film Festival world premiere. Following the documentary, he will be in conversation with Memphis musician Willie Hall to discuss the Gordon Parks classic film Shaft.

Other highlights include a 100th Anniversary screening of the landmark 1922 fantasy Haxan, along with an original live score by Memphis musician Alex Greene. Additional notable titles include James Gray’s star-studded festival favorite Armageddon Time, Reading Rainbow doc Butterfly in the Sky, a restoration print of the New Wave classic Daisies, and many, many others. More titles will be revealed in the coming weeks.

2022 Indie Memphis Film Festival Slate

Alphabetical by Category

OPENING NIGHT

THE PICTURE TAKER (Dir. Phil Bertelsen)
Meet Ernest Withers, civil rights photographer, and FBI informant. THE PICTURE TAKER reveals the man and motives behind the iconic images. With director Phil Bertelsen in person; image courtesy of Withers Family Trust.
2022, 80 min, Documentary

CLOSING NIGHT

IS THAT BLACK ENOUGH FOR YOU?!? (Dir. Elvis Mitchell)
A look at the Black revolution in 1970s cinema, from genre films to social realism, from the making of new superstars to the craft of rising auteurs. With Elvis Mitchell and Memphis musician Willie Hall in-person.
2022, 135 min, Documentary

Followed by a screening of SHAFT, introduced by Elvis Mitchell and Willie Hall:

SHAFT (Dir. Gordon Parks)
Cool black private eye John Shaft is hired by a crime lord to find and retrieve his kidnapped daughter.
1971, 100 min, Action

NARRATIVE COMPETITION

ACTUAL PEOPLE (Dir. Kit Zauhar)
ACTUAL PEOPLE (Dir. Kit Zauhar) is a simple but effective voyage into the mind of a young woman trying to find herself in a world that has somehow become hostile to those who refuse to find a place within its preconceived standards.
2021, 84 min, Drama/Comedy

OUR FATHER, THE DEVIL (Dir. Ellie Foumbi)
An African immigrant’s quiet life is upended by the arrival of a charismatic Catholic priest who she reminds her of her troubled past.
2021, 108 min, Thriller

ME LITTLE ME (Dir. Elizabeth Ayiku)
After an unexpected promotion, Mya, an ambitious young woman struggles to compartmentalize work and relationships while also managing her mental health.
2022, 84 min, Drama

VERY RARE (Dir. Eric Young)
A young unemployed man and his social media obsessed ex-girlfriend go on a frantic misadventure full of twists and turns and hidden motives to recover his uncle’s stolen luxury car.
2021, 106 min, Mystery/ Comedy

DOCUMENTARY COMPETITION

BUTTERFLY IN THE SKY (Dirs. Brett Whitcomb, Bradford Thomason)
BUTTERFLY IN THE SKY tells the story of the beloved PBS children’s series “Reading Rainbow,” its iconic host LeVar Burton, and the challenges its creators faced in cultivating a love of reading through television.
2022, 87 min, Documentary

DEREK CHANGES HIS MIND (Dirs. Derek Dabkoski, Ian McClellan, Im Joong Kim)
34-year-old traumatic brain injury (TBI) survivor Derek Dabkoski enrolls in a radical stem cell study he hopes will greatly change his quality of life and improve his capacities to secure a Green Card for his wife Nadia and help raise their newborn daughter Carmen.
2022, 79 min, Documentary

I AM FRANCE (Dir. Sarah El Attar)
I AM FRANCE is a feature-length documentary based on interviews of brothers and sisters of victims of police violence.
2022, 97 min, Documentary

OUTTA THE MUCK (Dir. Ira McKinley, Bhawin Suchak)
Told through stories that transcend space and time, OUTTA THE MUCK presents a community, and a family, that resists despair with love, remaining fiercely self-determined, while forging its own unique narrative of Black achievement.
2022, 82 min, Documentary

SAM NOW (Dir. Reed Harkness)
What happens when a boy and his brother go in search of their missing mom? Using twenty years of Super 8 movies, director Reed Harkness asks fascinating questions of creativity, freedom, and trauma.
2022, 85 min, Documentary

SILENT BEAUTY (Dir. Jasmin Mara López)
SILENT BEAUTY is a personal documentary that follows Director Jasmín López as she works to heal from child sexual abuse she endured at the hands of her grandfather, Gilberto, a Baptist minister, almost thirty years ago.
2022, 87 min, Documentary

NARRATIVE SPOTLIGHT

AFTERSUN (Dir. Charlotte Wells)
Sophie reflects on the shared joy and private melancholy of a holiday she took with her father twenty years earlier.
2022, 101 min, Drama

ARMAGEDDON TIME (Dir. James Gray)
A coming-of-age story about the strength of family, the complexity of friendship, and the generational pursuit of the American dream starring Anthony Hopkins, Anne Hathaway and Jeremy Strong.
2022, 114 min, Drama

BABYSITTER (Dir. Monia Chokri) – Afterdark
After a sexist joke goes viral, Cédric loses his job and embarks on a therapeutic journey to free himself from sexism and misogyny. He and his girlfriend hire a mysterious and liberated babysitter to help shake things up.
2022, 87 min, Comedy

THE CIVIL DEAD (Dir. Clay Tatum)
A misanthropic, struggling photographer just wants to watch TV and eat candy while his wife is out of town, but when a desperate old pal resurfaces, his plans are thwarted, with spooky consequences.
2022, 103 min, Comedy

CORSAGE (Dir. Marie Kreutzer)
Vicky Krieps is mesmerizing as Empress Elisabeth of Austria in this bold, revisionist Cannes prize winner that uncinches the Sissi legend forever.
2022, 114 min, Drama

ENYS MAN (Dir. Mark Jenkin) – Afterdark
Set in 1973 on an uninhabited island off the Cornish coast, a wildlife volunteer’s daily observations of a rare flower turn into a metaphysical journey that forces her as well as the viewer to question what is real and what is nightmare.
2022, 90 min, Thriller

EO (Dir. Jerzy Skolimowski)
A donkey wanders around Europe, as it experiences the best and worst mankind has to offer.
2022, 77 min, Drama

GIVE ME PITY! (Dir. Amanda Kramer)
Sissy St. Claire graces the small screen for her first ever television special, an evening full of music and laughter, glamor and entertainment. But Sissy’s live event quickly begins to curdle into a psychedelic nightmare.
2022, 80 min, Comedy/Musical/Thriller

HAPPER’S COMET (Dir. Tyler Taormina)
A midnight mosaic of a suburban town steeped in alienation. While peering into the late night moments of many residents, we notice that some of them quietly escape into the dark of night via rollerblades.
2022, 62 min, Experimental Drama

NANNY (Dir. Nikyatu Jusu)
Immigrant nanny Aisha, piecing together a new life in New York City while caring for the child of an Upper East Side family, is forced to confront a concealed truth that threatens to shatter her precarious American Dream.
2022, 97 min, Drama

ONE FINE MORNING (Dir. Mia Hansen-Løve)
With a father suffering from neurodegenerative disease, a young woman lives with her eight-year-old daughter. While struggling to secure a decent nursing home, she runs into a friend who, although being in a relationship, embarks on an affair.
2022, 112 min, Drama/Romance

WILL-’O-THE-WISP (Dir. João Pedro Rodrigues)
A Portuguese musical romantic comedy following the story of Alfredo, the crown prince of Portugal whose passion for the environment leads him to become a fireman, where he falls in love with colleague Afonso.
2022, 67 min, Musical/Comedy

DOCUMENTARY SPOTLIGHT

MEET ME IN THE BATHROOM (Dirs. Will Lovelace, Dylan Southern) – Sounds
An immersive journey through the New York music scene of the early 2000s. Set against the backdrop of 9/11, this documentary tells the story of how a new generation kickstarted a musical rebirth for New York City that reverberated around the world.
2022, 105 min, Documentary

THE RETURN OF TANYA TUCKER (Dir. Kathlyn Horan) – Sounds
Trailblazing, hell-raising country music legend Tanya Tucker defied the standards of how a woman in country music was supposed to behave. Decades after Tanya slipped from the spotlight, rising Americana music star Brandi Carlile takes it upon herself to write an entire album for her hero based on Tanya’s extraordinary life, spurring the greatest comeback in country music history.
2022, 108 min, Documentary

REVIVALS & RESTORATIONS

DAISIES (Dir. Věra Chytilová)
Two teenage girls embark on a series of destructive pranks in which they consume and destroy the world around them.
1966, 76 min, Comedy

PAPER MOON (Dir. Peter Bogdanovich)
During the Great Depression, a con man finds himself saddled with a young girl—who may or may not be his daughter—and the two forge an unlikely partnership.
1973, 102 min, Drama

SHAFT (Dir. Gordon Parks)
Cool black private eye John Shaft is hired by a crime lord to find and retrieve his kidnapped daughter. With introduction by Elvis Mitchell and Willie Hall.
1971, 100 min, Actio

SPECIAL EVENTS

ANTENNA (Dir. Chris McCoy)
The 2012 Indie Memphis Film Festival award-winning documentary from Chris McCoy and Laura Jean Hocking about Memphis punk rock and the club that changed the city.
2012, 99 min, Documentary

HAXAN 100th Anniversary with Live Original Score by Alex Greene (Dir. Edla Hansen)
Grave robbing, torture, possessed nuns, and a satanic Sabbath: Benjamin Christensen’s silent, fictionalized documentary from 1922 explores the evolution of witchcraft, from its pagan roots to its confusion with hysteria in Eastern Europe.
1922, 77 min, Documentary/Fantasy

THE POOR & HUNGRY (Dir. Craig Brewer)
A Memphis car thief falls in love with one of his victims, an attractive cellist in this 2000 Indie Memphis Film Festival Award Winner/feature debut from Craig Brewer (HUSTLE AND FLOW). Craig Brewer in person
2000, 118 min, Drama

SOUNDS

THE JOB OF SONGS (Dir. Lila Schmitz)
On the west coast of Ireland, a community of musicians seek joy and connection through music as they face a modernizing world.
2022, 74 min, Documentary

KUMINA QUEEN (Dir. Nyasha Laing)
Imogene “Queenie” Kennedy was a contemporary priestess in post-colonial Jamaica who catapulted her African spiritual practice into renown. But after centuries of erasure, what remains of the dance between the living and the dead?
2022, 58 min, Documentary

MIJA (Dir. Isabel Castro)
MIJA chronicles the emotional and complex stories of Doris Muñoz and Jacks Haupt, the daughters of undocumented immigrants from Mexico, navigating their careers in the music industry. For these two, “making it” isn’t just a dream, it’s a necessity.
2022, 85 min, Documentary

ROOTS OF FIRE (Dirs. Abby Berendt Lavoi, Jeremey Lavoi)
The battle to revive dying tradition comes to life through the young musicians of Southwest Louisiana in this powerful musical documentary.
2022, 85 min, Documentary

HOMETOWNER COMPETITION

CXFFEEBLACK TO AFRICA (Dir. Andrew Puccio)
A teacher turned hip hop artist is on a mission to reclaim a stolen fruit, coffee, from his motherland of Africa.
2022, 43 min, Documentary

JOOKIN (Dir. Howard Bell IV)
Charlene and her son are forced to relocate to Memphis with her estranged sister. Tensions quickly escalate between the sisters; while Quincy, becomes immersed in the city’s gritty lifestyle.
2022, 75 min, Drama

THE RECYCLE KING (Dir. Julian Harper)
THE RECYCLE KING is a story about Paul Thomas, a fashion designer who takes recycled and discarded material to create a wide variety of unique fashion pieces.
2022, 48 min, Documentary

SHOW BUSINESS IS MY LIFE – BUT I CAN’T PROVE IT (Dir. GB Shannon)
SHOW BUSINESS IS MY LIFE follows comedian Gary Mule Deer and his 60 year career making people laugh.
2022, 90 min, Documentary

THE ‘VOUS (Dir. Jack Porter Lofton)
Celebrating its 70th year, the world-famous Memphis BBQ Institution and celebrity attraction The Rendezvous faces unprecedented change as the legendary waiters retire and the “family” business moves into a third generation.
2022, 82 min, Documentary

HOMETOWNER SPOTLIGHT

50 FOR DA CITY (Dir. Michael Blevins)
Documentary about Zach Randolph’s time with the Memphis Grizzlies.
2022, 72 min, Documentary

FACING DOWN STORMS: MEMPHIS AND THE MAKING OF IDA B. STORMS (Dirs. Daphene R. McFerren, Nathaniel Ball)
FACING DOWN STORMS: MEMPHIS AND THE MAKING OF IDA B. STORMS explores how the unique cultural and social atmosphere of late 19th century Memphis, Tenn. indelibly shaped Ida B. Wells as a journalist and activist.
2022, 90 min, Documentary

READY FIRE AIM (Dir. Melissa Sweazy)
The story of Kemmons Wilson, the country-boy genius who founded Holiday Inn and transformed the way the world travels.
2022, 70 min, Documentary

UNITED FRONT – THE PEOPLE’S CONVENTION (Dir. Chuck O’Bannon)
The story of the political convention in Memphis that selected a consensus candidate that led to the election of the first African American Mayor of Memphis, TN, Dr. W.W. Herenton.
2022, 67 min, Documentary

DEPARTURES

DOS ESTACIONES (Dir. Juan Pablo González)
Winner of a Special Jury Prize at the Sundance Film Festival, DOS ESTACIONES follows iron-willed businesswoman María García (Teresa Sánchez), the owner of Dos Estaciones, a once-majestic tequila factory, as she is forced to do everything she can to save her community’s primary economy and source of pride.
2022, 95 min, Drama

ELEPHANT (Dir. Maria Judice)
A woman witnesses a murder of a young boy by a police officer and suffers from a prolonged mental breakdown that renders her incapable of leaving her apartment.
2022, 96 min, Drama

THIS HOUSE (Dir. Miryam Charles)
Bridgeport, 2008. A teenage girl is found hanged in her room. While everything points to suicide, the autopsy report reveals something else.
2022, 75 min, Drama

A WOMAN ESCAPES (Dirs. Burak Çevik, Blake Williams, Sofia Bohdanowicz)
While grieving the loss of her friend, a woman living alone in Paris begins an unusual correspondence with two filmmakers.
2022, 81 min, Drama

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