Raising Bertie is a longitudinal documentary feature following three young African American boys over the course of six years as they grow into adulthood in Bertie County, a rural African American-led community in Eastern North Carolina. Through the intimate portrayal of these boys, this powerful vérité film offers a rare in-depth look at the issues facing America’s rural youth and the complex relationships between generational poverty, educational equity, and race. The evocative result is an experience that encourages us to recognize the value and complexity in lives all too often ignored.
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Family secrets, lies, high drama and generations of contemporary history unspool in this international story that begins with World War II and concludes with an emotional 21st-century family reunion. Izak was born inside the Bergen-Belsen displaced persons camp in 1945 and sent for adoption in Israel. Secret details of his birth mother, an unknown brother in Canada and his father’s true identity slowly emerge in this extremely personal investigative film.
Before Bad Brains, the Sex Pistols or even the Ramones, there was Death. Formed in the early ’70s by three teenage brothers from Detroit, Death is credited as being the first black punk band, and the Hackney brothers, David, Bobby, and Dannis, are now considered pioneers in their field. But it wasn’t until recently — when a dusty 1974 demo tape made its way out of Bobby’s attic nearly 30 years after Death’s heyday — that anyone outside a small group of punk enthusiasts had even heard of them.