immigrant

The Arab Americans

 

This documentary illustrates the contributions made to America for almost 200 years by those who immigrated to the United States from the Middle East, North Africa and the Arabian Peninsula. The film paints a portrait of the Arab American immigrant experience through the stories of General John Abizaid, actor Jamie Farr, Senator George Mitchell, NYT correspondent Anthony Shadid, journalist Helen Thomas and others.

 

Forgotten Ellis Island

 

Visit the abandoned immigrant hospital on Ellis Island. During the great wave of immigration, 22 medical buildings sprawled across two islands adjacent to Ellis Island, the largest port of entry to the United States.

 

Painted Nails

 

Van Hoang, a Vietnamese immigrant and nail salon owner in San Francisco, sees her American dream begin to crumble with the discovery that her health problems, which include two miscarriages, are the result of toxic chemicals in products used in her salon. She unintentionally becomes involved in the national fight to bring reform to an $8.54 billion industry that touches the lives of nearly every woman in America.

 

Giap’s Last Day at the Ironing Board Factory

 

In 1975, Giap, a pregnant Vietnamese refugee, escapes Saigon in a boat and within weeks is working on an assembly line in Indiana. Decades later, her aspiring filmmaker son documents her final day of work at America’s last ironing board factory.

 

INDEPENDENT LENS
Ovarian Psycos

 

Based in the heart of Los Angeles’ Eastside, and building upon the legacy of the Chicano/Chicana civil rights movement, the irreverently named Ovarian Psycos Cycle Brigade are a ferocious and unapologetic group of young women of color, cycling through the barrios and boulevards of the Eastside, committed to collectively confronting racism and violence, and demanding and creating safe spaces for women.

 

Off the Menu:
Asian America

 

Discover the wealth of stories, traditions and unexpected characters that nourish this nation of immigrants, and go into the kitchens, factories, temples and farms of Asian Pacific America to explore how the bond with food reflects community. Included is a visit to MAʻO Organic Farms in Waianae, Oahu.

 

JAPANESE AMERICAN LIVES
Don’t Lose Yourself / Honor and Sacrifice

 

Don’t Lose Your Soul
This film is a portrait of bassist Mark Izu and drummer Anthony Brown, two founders of the Asian American Jazz Movement. It traces the origin of their partnership forged in the crucible of the ethnic-identity movements of the 70s, the political force of their band United Front, and their seminal tribute to the Japanese internment experience, Big Bands Behind Barbed Wire.

 

Honor & Sacrifice
This film tells the complex story of a Japanese immigrant family ripped apart by WWII. The Matsumoto family included five sons; two who fought for the Americans and three who fought for the Japanese. The eldest, Hiroshi (Roy), became a hero, fighting against the Japanese with Merrill’s Marauders, an American guerrilla unit in Burma.

 

INDEPENDENT LENS
Stray Dog

 

From the director of the Oscar-nominated Winter’s Bone comes this portrait of a motorcycle-riding Vietnam veteran. There’s more to Ronnie “Stray Dog” Hall than meets the eye; behind the tattoos and leather vest is a man dedicated to helping his fellow vets and immigrant family as he comes to terms with his combat experience. experience.

 

INDEPENDENT LENS
East of Salinas

 

This film is a story about immigration, childhood and circumstance. With little support at home, Salinas, California third grader Jose Ansaldo often turns to his teacher, Oscar Ramos, once a migrant farm kid himself. Oscar helps Jose imagine a future beyond the lettuce fields where his parents work. But Jose was born in Mexico – and he’s on the cusp of understanding the implications of that.

 

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