USA, 2007, 58 minutes
Mon, Apr 28 / 6:45 / Kabuki / PROF28K
Sun, May 4 / 2:00 / PFA / PROF04P
In his landmark A People’s History of the United States, historian Howard Zinn toppled the conventions of top-down historiography by focusing on those whose voices are rarely heard. Filmmaker John Gianvito, inspired by Zinn, creates his own unique testament, a minimalist memorial to America’s radicals and freethinkers. A film of poetic simplicity, Profit motive and the whispering wind uses a mostly still camera and ambient sound to contemplate a series of gravestones and historical markers memorializing people who fought daringly and selflessly for social equality and justice. In its quiet way the film mimics with surprising effectiveness the inherently evocative power of these sites, as each viewer calls up his or her own memory and imagining of the voices and images of the past. The graves of John Brown, Sojourner Truth, César Chávez and others thus mark a picturesque yet somber travelogue through American history that culminates in a stirring montage of ordinary people marching and organizing in the spirit of those who came before them. Some graves may be unmarked or passed over, but Profit motive and the whispering wind reminds us that the lives and ideas they stand for live on in us.
Pool In the aftermath of the devastating tsunami of 2004, a small town in Indonesia begins repairing a shattered community. There, in a half-finished swimming pool used as a makeshift reservoir, local children conquer newfound fears by learning to swim again, in this poignant reflection on healing. (Chris Chong Chan, Malaysia 2007, 13 min)
Presented in association with San Francisco Cinematheque. West Coast Premiere.