Thursday, April 16, 2009

Reel Poverty Film Festival at the University of Marquette

A short film festival taks place tonight at the University of Marquette in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Students at the film school record stories about poverty and homelessness in the Milwaukee area. A web video of one of the films can be found at this page, from the University.

From the Marquette Tribune, writer Tori Dykes describes the event.

The films are centered on homelessness and poverty in Milwaukee, but student filmmakers chose how to address the subject matter. So the films will not necessarily all be shot in the style of a straight documentary, said John Ross, one of the festival organizers and a sophomore in the College of Engineering.

"We're trying to make a connection with people through the videos," Ross said. "Once you see these stories, these problems become a lot more apparent."

There will be additional presentations between the films, including a performance by a choir from Repairers of the Breach, a shelter and homelessness outreach center, as well as poetry readings from a man who used to be homeless, Davis said.

The combination of student films and performances from members of Milwaukee's homeless community "gives people more of a complete view" of homelessness and poverty, Davis said.

The festival will also feature a display of photographs submitted as part of a contest sponsored by Hunger Clean-Up, said Megan Heinen, co-chair of the Hunger Clean-Up fundraising committee and sophomore in the College of Nursing.

The photographs will focus on issues of hunger, homelessness and other aspects of social justice.

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