When Liberty Burns

Available mid-January 2022

On December 17th, 1979… after failing to stop for a traffic light, Miami police officers gave chase to Arthur Lee McDuffie, a 33-year-old African American insurance agent and former Marine. When McDuffie surrendered, he was beaten until he lost consciousness.

That beating by four police officers resulted in his death.

After the officers were tried and acquitted on charges including manslaughter and evidence tampering, riots broke out in the black neighborhoods of Overtown and Liberty City on the night of May 17.

Those riots continued until May 20, resulting in 18 additional deaths.

While “When Liberty Burns” highlights the life and death of Arthur L. McDuffie, his story is simply a launching point for a far grander historical examination of the context in which the city of Miami developed during America’s Jim Crow era.

The film traces the dynamics of race relations in the city and uses this analysis as a microcosmic examination of what is happening across the nation… still… today.

By looking at the history of the friction between White and Black America in 1979 Miami through the eyes of those who were there, the viewer is provided with context toward a better understanding of today’s America, an America in which there continues to be an epidemic level of race violence.

Featured in the film are:

  • Frederica Watts McDuffie / Widow of the late Arthur Lee McDuffie
  • Forestine Reid / McDuffie Family Matriarch
  • Elder Shederika McDuffie Johnson / First born of Arthur Lee McDuffie
  • Marc McDuffie / Son of Arthur Lee McDuffie, a gospel music Minister.
  • Luis McDuffie / Older Brother Of Arthur L. McDuffie
  • Gwendolyn Anderson / Childhood friend of Arthur Lee McDuffie
  • Perman Anderson / Childhood friend of Arthur Lee McDuffie, retired City of Miami firefighter
  • Lonnie Lawrence / Retired Public Information Officer and Former Director of Miami-Dade County Corrections Department
  • Linda Saunders / Former Internal Affairs Investigator, Miami-Dade Police Department
  • Sam Stubbs / Former Motorcycle officer, City of Miami Police Force
  • Marshall Frank / Former Homicide  Investigator, Miami-Dade Police Department
  • Valeria Bland Thomas / Former Counsel for City of Miami-Dade Police Department
  • Floyd Jordan / Retired firefighter, City of Miami
  • Willie Logan / former Mayor of the City of Opa-Locka
  • Dr. N.D.B Connolly / author of “A World More Concrete: Real Estate and the Remaking of Jim Crow South Florida”
  • Dr. Marvin Dunn / Author of several books including “A History of Florida Through Black Eyes”.
  • Dr. Tameka Bradley Hobbs / author of “Democracy Abroad, Lynching at Home: Racial Violence in Florida”
  • WINNER: Knight Feature Film Award, Miami Film Festival (2020)
  • NOMINATED: Knight Documentary Achievement Award, Best Documentary, Miami Film Festival (2020)

Production Year: 2020 / 111 Minutes / Color / English / 16×9 HD / A film by Dudley Alexis

HOW TO ORDER:

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When Liberty Burns Trailer from Epyllion Studios on Vimeo.

El Hombre Búfalo

Inspired by the true story of death threats, Mexican journalism, and the urban legend of the Buffalo Man, and based upon the poetry of Julio Cortázar.

With a surreal aesthetic and disruptive narrative that underscores the disenchantment and dangers of investigative journalism in Mexico, EL HOMBRE BÚFALO follows Eric, a young journalist in Mexico City who stops writing after he receives death threats. Obsessed with an elderly homeless man who has dementia and a mythical being who takes care of abandoned children, he decides to write again, even if it costs him his life.

Since 2000, at least 133 journalists have been killed in Mexico – rated by the Reporters Without Borders organization as the most dangerous country without war in which to practice journalism, behind only Afghanistan and Syria.

  • Winner – Vision Award, Socially Relevant Film Festival
  • Winner – Best Picture, Festival Internacional de Cine del Mar (Uruguay)
  • Winner – Best Actor (Raúl Briones), Festival Internacional de Cine del Mar (Uruguay)
  • Winner – Jury Special Mention, Editing, Festival Internacional de Cine del Mar (Uruguay)
  • Winner – Best Screenplay (David Torres), Festival Internacional de Cine del Mar (Uruguay)
  • Official Selection – Chihuahua International Film Festival
  • Official Selection – Macabro Festival Internacional de Cine de Horror

Filmed in Mexico, EL HOMBRE BÚFALO features a wonderful ensemble cast that includes Verónica Bravo (Backdoor), Raúl Briones (Suffocation), Ana Clara Castañón (An Unknown Enemy) and Antonio Monroi (Apocalypto)

“Evokes an almost-Lynchian mood that succeeds at creating a feeling that draws us in and keeps us engaged.” – S. Yonan, The Sound View

Foreign Crime-Drama-Fantasy / 2020 / 70 minutes / Spanish with English subtitles / Color / 16×9 / A film by David Torres.

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The Holstein Dilemma

“For anyone interested in the science of how genetic alteration can have devastating effects on both the animal and human population, The Holstein Dilemma should prove extremely informative. Recommended” – M. Fishman, Film Critic.

Heritage Breeds and the Need for Biodiversity…Intense genetic selection can have an unintended side effect.

“Nearly all male Holsteins alive today can be traced back to two bulls from the 1960s.” – Chad Dechow and Wansheng Liu, Pennsylvania State University, College of Agricultural Sciences.

“The Holstein Dilemma” is about far more than the state of Holsteins. It is an investigative documentary delving into agribusiness and the importance of maintaining the diverse genetic characteristics found in all heritage breed livestock and crops.

What started out as a simple question at a livestock fair inspired filmmakers Rick and Elara Bowman to search for answers across North America, from those who actually do the work and the experts that back it up with science.

Compelling data and discussions on this looming crisis reveal scientific evidence of a looming threat to food safety. The film also reveals several grassroots conservation efforts to preserve and protect genetic biodiversity and the security of our global food supply.

This film explores why diversity is important in today’s agricultural model that’s based on large volume, fast growth, and the cheapest product possible for the consumer, but little else. It explores how we can balance the need to produce food for a hungry planet vs. the need for biodiversity in our one-track production model.

That’s The Holstein Dilemma.

Among those featured in the film are:

  • Temple Grandin (Professor of Animal Science at Colorado State University)
  • Cary Fowler (American agriculturalist and the former executive director of the Crop Trust)
  • Isabella Rossellini (Actress and Sundance Channel commissioned filmmaker of The Green)
  • Adam Danforth (James Beard award-winning author of two books, published by Storey Publishing, about slaughtering and butchering livestock).

As seen on Public Television and the Winner: Accolade Global Film Competition, Award of Recognition

Documentary / 2021 / 92 Minutes / English / A Film by Rick & Elara Bowman (Banjos, Bluegrass and Squirrel Barkers)

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The Holstein Dilemma Trailer from Rick Bowman on Vimeo.

I Danced for the Angel of Death – The Dr. Edith Eva Eger Story

Broadcast Nationally on Public Television (April 2021).

New York Times best-selling author of The Choice: Embrace the Possible, Dr. Edith Eva Eger, tells her story of survival in this 2021 production from The Holocaust Education Film Foundation, (a 501c3).

At the age of sixteen, Edith Eger was sent to Auschwitz. Hours after her parents were killed, Nazi officer Dr. Josef Mengele (The Angel of Death), forced her to dance for his amusement. This dance saved her life.

The Foundation’s newest production features 93-year-old Dr. Edith Eva Eger, who is possibly the most famous living Holocaust Survivor due in large part to her bestselling books, appearances on talk shows, and her still thriving psychology practice, specializing in Trauma and PTSD.

Born in 1927 in Kosice, Slovakia, where she lived with her parents and two older sisters, Magda and Klara, Edith Eger lived a typical Jewish life. The family eventually moved to Budapest, Hungary where in 1944 Nazis put them on a cattle car to Auschwitz as part of the Final Solution. Klara, a violin prodigy who “didn’t look Jewish” was hidden by her music professor and continued to perform during the war.

Upon arrival at Auschwitz, Edie’s parents were immediately murdered, and she spent her entire incarceration with her older sister Magda. Most chillingly, Edie had at least two interactions with “the Angel of Death” Dr. Josef Mengele. First when he tore her away from her mother with the promise that “your mother is going to take a shower and you’ll see her soon.” The second when he discovered she was a ballerina and gymnast and demanded she dance for him. The bread she received for dancing was shared with fellow prisoners who remembered this act of kindness and saved her life later in her story.

A few months after Auschwitz, Edith was placed in full prisoner garb on top of a munitions train as a human shield to keep the British from bombing (it didn’t work) and after a brief stint at Mauthausen was placed on a forced death march to Gunskirchen Lager where cannibalism had just broken out.

The full breadth of this horror is described in vivid detail through the eyes of Alan Moskin, a 95-year-old Patton’s Army soldier who liberated Gunskirchen Lager. His interview is nothing short of breathtaking and you will hang on every word. Incredibly, there were 44,000 concentration camps and other Nazi internment sites, and we found a living liberator who remembers every moment of his experience in that self-described “hell hole.” He did not speak of this horror for 50 years, but we have him now preserved for history.

After the war, Edith’s nightmare did not yet end. From the Communist overthrow of Hungary, to her husband’s imprisonment and her smuggling him out, to their arrival penniless in the USA, you will marvel at how this determined and dynamic woman refused to be a victim and never gave up, becoming a published bestselling author and internationally acclaimed Psychologist.

Edith weaves her remarkable personal journey with the moving stories of those she has helped heal. She explores how we can be imprisoned in our own minds and shows us how to find the key to freedom. Her book, The Choice, is a life-changer that provides hope and comfort to generations of readers.

Oprah Winfrey said “I’ll be forever changed by Dr. Eger’s story.”

Desmond Tutu, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate wrote “Dr. Eger’s life reveals our capacity to transcend even the greatest of horrors and to use that suffering for the benefit of others. She has found true freedom and forgiveness and shows us how we can as well.”

In “I Danced for the Angel of Death”, Dr. Edith Eva Eger tells her own story.

Documentary / 2021 / 57 minutes / Color / English / A film by Ron Small

About the Foundation:

The Holocaust Education Film Foundation was formed to preserve first-person narratives of Holocaust Survivors through documentaries.

Beginning with “To Auschwitz and Back – The Joe Engel Story,” which was followed by “Surviving Birkenau – The Dr. Susan Spatz Story” and “From the Holocaust to Hollywood – The Robert Clary Story”, the Foundation’s work has provided an outlet to preserve history. The hope is that future generations may learn from these stories and heed the warning of those who experienced the worst of humanity; attempting to keep history from repeating itself.

HOW TO ORDER:

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Every Night’s A Saturday Night: The Bobby Keys Story

The biographical documentary about Lubbock Texas legendary sax man Bobby Keys, known as the “6th Rolling Stone” (per Keith Richards), from director Jeff Stacy (writer and co-producer of the critically acclaimed Gospel Hill)

Features exclusive interviews with Bobby Keys himself, plus music legends Keith Richards, Charlie Watts, Ron Wood, Mick Taylor, Ian MacLagan, Billy Gibbons, Jim Price, J.I. Allison, Joe B. Mauldin, Dr. John, Jim Keltner, Bobby Whitlock, Joe Ely and more.

“Every Night’s a Saturday Night meticulously traces Keys’ extraordinary rise from the dusty outskirts of Lubbock, Texas, to bear witness to the glory years of rock ‘n’ roll.” – Ed Tarkington , Nashville Scene.

“Bobby Keys died at 70 in 2014. But not before leaving his musical thumbprint all over recordings by the Stones, Marvin Gaye, Eric Clapton, Barbra Streisand, Dr. John, Joe Cocker, three of the four Beatles and scores of others. Fans of the Rolling Stones’ masterpiece ‘Exile on Main Street’ can hear some of his best-known work.” – Andrew Dansby, Houston Chronicle.

“Pete Best and the Beatles. Dave Mustaine and Metallica. Every legendary band has that one member that helped define their sound, then fell from favor. In most cases, they were a founder who never surrounded the maelstrom of the early years. Not Bobby Keys, the man that became known as ‘the sixth Rolling Stone.” – Richard Whittaker, Austin Chronicle

Bobby Keys mark on the music industry and his soulfully brash and bellowing sax solos will be heard until the end of time.

2018 / Music Documentary / 89 minutes / Color / A film by Jeff Stacy

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American Heretics: The Politics of the Gospel

At what other point in our history has the line between church and state become so tangled and polarizing?

“This documentary has the potential to move hearts and minds”– Kimber Myers, Los Angeles Times.

“Eye-opening” – Ben Kenigsberg, The New York Times 

“…it speaks to what it means to find common ground,
to live with our differences.”-
Tyler Hammel, The Daily Progress

Every story has a birthplace, a core, a microcosm from which when expanded upon takes on a larger than life arc. In “American Heretics”, a group of deeply faithful Christians in Oklahoma are challenging firmly rooted fundamentalist Christian doctrine. Labeled as “heretics” for their beliefs and seemingly defiant interpretations of the Gospels, they are open minded to the Bible as a living document and have made incredible progress.

American Heretics challenges what we think we know about the Christian heartland by offering a rare personal glimpse into the contentious and often misunderstood history of religion, race, and politics in America, all seen through the eyes of a courageous group of Oklahomans working to bridge the divide within their community.

Directed and Produced by Emmy Award-Winning Filmmakers Jeanine Isabel Butler and Catherine Lynn Butler, American Heretics touches upon major themes in America and the definition of our nation including, but not limited to:

  • Immigration
  • Gay Rights / Gay Marriage
  • Race
  • Political Activism
  • Black History
  • Gender Bias
  • Societal Oppression
  • Religious History
  • Sanctuary Cities
  • Heresy

Told with both personally emotional stories and arresting expert narration weaved throughout cinematic footage, photographs and illustrations that maintain a progressive pace, American Heretics is a politically charged tale of America that brings hotly debated subjects to the forefront of consciousness.

Consider this…

Christianity is the most adhered to religion in the United States with over 70% of polled American adults identifying themselves as Christian in 2019. With an LGBTQ theme as a core subject in American Heretics, the subject itself is a hot button throughout the Christian community. According to the most recent Pew Research Center study of acceptance rates of homosexuality in America (2020), while 70% of Catholics believe it should be accepted, only 38% of Evangelists believe so. This divided acceptance is possibly the largest subject of division within the Christian community with
gay marriage at the center of it.

Of the top 5 issues being faced in America (according to Heritage.org) , 4 are addressed head on in American Heretics:
 
Conservatism vs. Progressivism
Health Care
Immigration
Religious Freedom
Marriage √

Among those featured in American Heretics are Dr. Reverend Robin Meyers, Reverend Lori Walke, Dr. Bernard Brandon Scott, Reverend Bishop Carlton Pearson, Dr. Robert Jones, Nehemiah D. Frank, Reverend Marlin Lavanhar, Oklahoma State Representative Collin R. Walke (D-87) and more.

The DVD version includes two bonus segments:

  • Extended Panel Discussion / Q & A with Cast
  • Introduction of the film by Rev. Bishop Carlton Pearson

About the filmmakers:

JEANINE ISABEL BUTLER (Producer, Writer and Director):
Jeanine is an award-winning director, producer and writer. Specializing in documentaries and non- fiction entertainment, her work has been broadcast across multiple platforms, screened at film festivals worldwide and garnered numerous awards, including 3 National Emmy nominations for Documenting the Face of America (PBS), The Science of HIV/AIDS (The Discovery Channel), and Africa (BBC/Discovery Channel). Butler has produced, written and directed longform documentaries for Explorer, the premier documentary series for National Geographic and crafted strategic storytelling for nonprofits and international NGOs.

CATHERINE LYNN BUTLER (Producer and Co-Writer): Catherine Lynn Butler is an Emmy award-winning documentary writer/producer with global experience developing and delivering impactful long and short form documentaries for television, museums, educational nonprofits and NGOs. Emmy Award winning docs include Journey of the Universe (PBS); The Women of Tibet (PBS); and a National Emmy nomination for Documenting the Face of America (PBS). She also produced the critically acclaimed feature-length investigative documentary The Future of Food, which enjoyed widespread theatrical and digital distribution.

2019 / Documentary / 85 Minutes / Color / 16×9 / English Language / A film by Jeanine Isabel Butler and Catherine Lynn Butler.

HOW TO ORDER:

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While You Live, Shine

Where does music come from, and what is it for? 

A journey deep into the oldest music in the Western world – Greek music – guided by an eccentric musicologist who has dedicated his life to understanding and preserving it.

While You Live, Shine is an immersive sonic and visual feast that leaves the viewer feeling they’ve looked into a way of life that the 21st century has left behind. The film is a call to arms for a different way of listening to music, understanding humanity and living as a community.

“There’s a magnificent match cut at an early juncture of While You Live, Shine — from a microscopic view of the grooves in the 78 RPM record supplying the film’s soundtrack to the craggy landscape of the Greek mountains from which the music comes—that demonstrates in an instant this wonderful documentary’s innate understanding of the power of art to transport us.” – Scannain

The film stars Chris King, an American music expert fascinated by early recordings of melancholy blues and folk from the start of the twentieth century.

The title of the film is derived from the Seikilos song, the world’s oldest recorded piece of music, from Greece. The transcendental music carved into stone remains alive in Epirus, where Greeks gather every summer to play, dance and sing. Chris King traveled there to experience and share the enchanting phenomenon that rekindles this art form annually.

The winner of the 2018 Spirit of Indie Cork Award at IndieCork, When You Live Shine has also been featured as Official Selections for such festivals as Rotterdam International Film Festival, The Audi Dublin International Film Festival, Belfast Film Festival, The Greek Film Festival (Dublin) and more.

2018 / 80 minutes / Color / English / Produced and directed by Paul Duane (Barbaric Genius, Very Extremely Dangerous).

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Escape from Room 18

Escape from Room 18 tells one of the most unpredictable true stories of transformation in our century.

John Daly received an e-mail from someone in his long-forgotten past.

Did it mean “they found him”? Was he being set up? Or… was he being “saved”?

Daly was a high-ranking officer in one of America’s largest neo-Nazi skinhead organizations (Daytona Beach, Florida). He learned early on to turn his human emotions off and accept hatred and violence as his way of life.

They then learned he was a Jew and attempted to murder him.

A true story of redemption unlike any other, Escape from Room 18 brings the viewer on a transformative journey from within organized hate and violence to the embracing of a new life of compassion and public atonement.

After the attempted murder, John fled to Israel for safety. Years later he received an e-mail from someone from his long-forgotten past; a fellow ex-skinhead.

Apparently on a mission to change his own life and make amends for his past, he invited John to meet him in Prague to discover and see firsthand the effects of what they both had preached and practiced. Suffering from PTSD and a brain tumor, John was reluctant at first.

Was this a new, clandestine attempt on his life or was this an invitation to salvation?

In fact, Kevin’s invitation was an honest one.

Subsequently, Escape from Room 18 takes a twist that is so unpredictable, the film plays out as an unprecedented look at human transformation, redemption and salvation. It provides a glimpse into the lives of two men that serves as a profound statement for all to witness.

Featuring John Daly (as himself), Kevin Connell (as himself), Rafa Garcia (as the young John Daly), Alexander Kaminer (as Gleb Kaminer) and more, Escape from Room 18 combines both documentary and dramatic recreation in what TC JewFolk called the “Intense Reformation of a Jewish Nazi”.

An Official Selection at

  • The Moscow Jewish Film Festival
  • The Twin Cities Jewish Film Festival
  • The Odessa Jewish Film Festival
  • and The Ekaterinburg Jewish Film Festival

2017 / 60 Minutes / Color / English Language / A film by Daniel Brea

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David Susskind Archive: Interview With Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

The historic 1963 interview that stopped JFK in his tracks…

“King was at his best that night, delivering his message in the powerful but measured tones that represented his non-violent movement. But the calmness on set belied the turmoil Susskind went through to get the program on the air, and therein lies a tale.” – Los Angeles Times (12/17/19)

David Susskind’s long and intimate interview with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. originally aired on June 9, 1963. The broadcast has not been seen in full since its original airing.

Among the subjects discussed in the 102 minute broadcast were the current state of the American Civil Rights Movement and the then recent events in Birmingham, Alabama.

As the host, Susskind served to move the conversation forward, and Dr. King was already the dynamic and pointed leader we, as a nation, learned more and more about with each passing day through the turbulent 1960’s until his tragic assassination on April 4, 1968.

This interview was only a year and four months prior King’s earning of the Nobel Peace Prize on October 14, 1964, and only two months before the civil rights leader delivered his ‘I Have a Dream’ speech on August 28, 1963.

The broadcast was controversial and made television history…

‘Open End’ had recently been removed from the schedule of WNEW-TV because of the station’s management reluctance to air discussions regarding race relations in America. On that Sunday night in June however, WPIX-TV (NY) cleared the extraordinary interview between Susskind and the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr. WPIX picked up the ball, and the rest, as they say, became history.

Susskind and Dr. King discussed the gamut of racial issues of the day, particularly Dr. King’s disappointment at the speed at which the Kennedy Administration was moving regarding Civil Rights legislation.

The interview so rattled the White House that President Kennedy responded by going on national television to defend his Administration’s positions and to outline his push for what would later be the Civil and Voter’s rights Acts.

Following the broadcast, The New York Times wrote:

“In his broadest attack to date on President Kennedy’s Civil Rights record, the Southern Negro integrationist leader charged the President with a failure of leadership and with not having lived up to his campaign promises.”

and The New York Daily News wrote:

“The talk session, recorded for the ‘Open End’ program, abounded in so many highlights that the British Broadcasting Corporation has requested a copy of the tape for telecasting in England.”

Recently restored by The Paley Center, the presentation is without edit.

1963 / 102 minutes / SD / Black and White / Produced by David Susskind

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WATCH A SHORT SEGMENT OF THE INTERVIEW