I actually don’t believe there’s ever been a film/documentary that told their story has there? I can’t recall one at the moment. But if there has been one, I’m sure someone reading this will say so.
Regardless, even if there has been one, I’d say that this is still a group that deserves still more notoriety, because there seems to still be a general lack of awareness of the filmmakers within the movement, and the significant body of work they created. I only just realized this morning that there isn’t even a Wikipedia page for the L.A. Rebellion. Perform a search and you get a Los Angeles-based Rugby team.
Unless I’m just blind or something… feel free to search on your own.
And if there really isn’t one, we need to create one. I’ll lead the charge on that!
But thanks to Zeinabu Irene Davis who alerted me about her documentary, Spirits of Rebellion, which, as she notes on the film’s website, “documents the lives and work of a small group of critically acclaimed, but as of yet relatively unknown group of black filmmakers and media artists known as the Los Angeles Rebellion, the first sustained movement in the United States by a collective of minority filmmakers that aimed to reimagine the production process so as to represent, reflect on, and enrich the day to day lives of people in their own communities.
There’s a lot more where that came from, and you can read it all HERE.
And in case you’re not familiar with the filmmakers who made up the movement, here are a few names you should be familiar with: Julie Dash, Charles Burnett, Haile Gerima, Billy Woodberry, and Larry Clark.
The film is still a work-in-progress, and will be screened as such at the upcoming UCLA L.A. Rebellion retrospective that begins next month; our man on the West Coast, Brandon Wilson, will be covering the event for us, seeing as many titles as he can, and writing about them here – especially those that aren’t as well-known.
Spirits of Rebellion will be one of them.
I also plan to chat with Zeinabu Irene Davis, who is also a professor in the Department of Communication at the University of California, San Diego.
For now, here’s a preview of the documentary: