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2023 SPE Annual Conference Schedule

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SPE 2023 Media Festival

An international juried video festival

Saturday, March 18 - 9:00AM to 4:45PM


March 17-18, 2023Denver, CO

Festival Co-Directors: Lynn Estomin, Amanda Kline

LGBTQ Caucus Jurors: Gustavo Plascencia, Nick Simko

Multicultural Caucus Jurors: Michael Darough, Arthur Fields, Erin Jennings

Women's Caucus Jurors: Lynn Estomin, Amanda Kline, Kristin Reeves, Leila Saidane





Swimming in the Dark | 9:00 am 

Directed by Pin Ru Chen | Distribution: | 2022 | 27:10 min.

As the swimming competition nears, Wen is under a lot of pressure. Ann, who is inseparable from her, discovers something. To support Wen's closure and trauma, Ann decides to be closer to Wen. But, once she gets closer, it pushes them further……


Inside the Beauty Bubble | 9:27 am

Directed by Cheryl Bookout and Cheri Gaulke | Distribution: | 2021 | 31:15 min.

Enter a pastel dreamland of 3,000 vintage beauty artifacts in the desert community of Joshua Tree, California and meet "America's hairstorian" Jeff Hafler as he struggles to keep his roadside attraction afloat during a remarkable year that changes his life and the lives of his husband and son.


Invisible Wyoming | 9:58 am

Directed by Patricia McInroy | Distribution: | 2020 | 35:08 min.

This is a short documentary about the LGBT culture in Wyoming, with a special emphasis on the town of Casper.


Once I Passed | 10:33 am

Directed by Martin Gerigk | Distribution: | 2022 | 10:00 min.

In 1860, poet Walt Whitman published "Once I Passed Through a Populous City". Whitman could not publish the original version, about an affair with a man, due to the prejudices of his time. This piece is dedicated to Whitman's autobiographical context in the poem and its profoundly quiet, yet powerful story of two lovers.


Samira | 10:44 am

Directed by Anna Anat Gofman Banai | Distribution: | 2021 | 18:10 min. 

Leading up to her concert, Samira, an Arab lesbian singer, invites her family to see her on stage for the first time - something that feels almost like coming out again.


Titi | 11:02 am

Directed by Marzieh Fakhar | Distribution: | 2022 | 18:48 min.

After five years of marriage, she takes all the measures to undergo a transgender procedure when she realizes that she is pregnant and…







The Ebony Rockers Mural | 11:21 am

Directed by Richard David | Distribution: | 2022 | 14:07 min.

Chronicles the story of Ebony Rockers, a 1970s Reggae band, formed in Southampton in the slipstream of the 'Rock Against Racism' movement. Examines the band's career from a socio-political perspective and records the unveiling of a giant tribute mural in their home city, over 40 years after the original formation.


1991 | 11:35 am

Directed by Saif Alsaegh | Distribution: | 2018 | 11:55 min.

A documentary film that revolves around a conversation between the filmmaker, an Iraqi asylum-seeker living in the US, and his mother Bushra Alsaegh, an Iraqi immigrant living in Turkey while she awaits approval to immigrate to the US. 1991 navigates the distance between them. 


Biking While Black: Continuing to Ride Through Decriminalization, Disenfranchisement & Gentrification | 11:47 am

Directed by Yolanda Davis-Overstreet | Distribution: | 2022 | 29:06 min. 

An important look at the joys and challenges of biking while Black and the need for a transit future rooted in justice and equity. Biking While Black chronicles the determination of communities and the fight to continue to ride through decriminalization, disenfranchisement, and gentrification.


Floyd D. Tunson | Ascent | 12:16 pm

Directed by Collin Andrew Sanders | Distribution: | 2022 | 8:08 min.

This mini-documentary focuses on Floyd D. Tunson, a resounding local Colorado artist whose work has expressed what life is like as a member of the POC community in Colorado and across America.


La Guagua 47 | 12:24 pm

Directed by Pedro Escarcega | Distribution: | 2022 | 8:54 min.

The story of a young migrant, recently arrived in the big metropolis, who could not find her Latino community. A joyful celebration of Latindad, finding home, and belonging. A call to action for Latinos to tell their own stories, shape their image, and challenge the invisibility of Latino communities everywhere.


Messy | 12:33 pm

Directed by Mohammad Rahmati | Distribution: | 2022 | 18:25 min.

A pregnant female prisoner entered a house with two prison guards on her day after the trial to swallow drugs and transfer them to the prison; But…




RE-MEMBERING: Meditation on a Triptych | 12:53 pm

Directed by Amra Hećo | Distribution: | 2022 | 10:23 min.

A chance encounter with a home video from 1983 of a pre-war Bosnian town triggers unexpected emotions as the filmmaker recognizes her grandfather in the film. The present is seen through the eyes of the past so those who have passed on can reclaim the right to their own image.


Shattering the Pictures in Our Heads | 1:04 pm

Directed by Karem Orrego | Distribution: | 2021 | 11:40 min.

An immersive documentary experience deconstructs the "Mythic Indian" stereotype with genuine perspectives from members of the Shoshone-Paiute Tribes. This multi-screen art installation combines 360˚ and traditional video formats to create a three-dimensional environment steeped in the sights, sounds, and powerful stories from the Duck Valley Indian Reservation, NV & ID.


Through the Barricades | 1:16 pm

Directed by Alexandrine Benjamin | Distribution: | 2022 | 19:26 min.

In the midst of the treacherous social protests that have paralyzed Haiti for months, a modest couple must face blocked roads and murderous gangs in the hope of finding a place to give birth safely.


Tongue Twister Variations | 1:37 pm

Directed by Dan Boord & Luis Valdovino | Distribution: | 2013 | 

8:00 min. 

A project comprised entirely of thirty people, from around the world, sharing tongue twisters in their native languages. The tongue twister is part game, poetry, and song. Tongue Twister Variations playfully interweaves language, culture, portraiture in such a way as to constitute a "found" ethno-poetic poem.






Outlaw | 1:45 pm

Directed by Yu-Ching Ling | Distribution: | 2022 | 5:00 min.

Beginning with the perspective of the "Unlawful Mother", motherly love was woven between struggle.


Annah La Javanaise | 1:50 pm

Directed by Fatimah Tobing Rony | Distribution: | 2020 | 6:00 min.

An animated reimagining of the life of Annah, a 13-year-old Javanese girl brought to France in 1893 to serve as a maid and model to the famous painter Paul Gauguin.


Cara Romero: Following the Light | 1:56 pm

Directed by Kaela Waldstein | Distribution: | 2022 | 27:09 min.

A documentary on contemporary fine art photographer Cara Romero. An enrolled citizen of the Chemehuevi Indian Tribe, Romero was raised between contrasting settings: the rural Chemehuevi reservation in Mojave Desert, CA and the urban sprawl of Houston, TX. Romero's identity informs her photography.


Dear Nanay | 2:24 pm

Directed by Frances Grace Mortel | Distribution: | 2021 | 3:24 min.

A love letter to her grandmother, this experimental documentary explores the filmmaker's early memories in the Philippines and her search for refuge from pandemic anxiety and domestic claustrophobia.


Dim Star | 2:27 pm

Directed by Tianchen Li | Distribution: | 2022 | 27:25 min.

Dim Star tells the story of a woman who is abruptly called back home to take care of her mother, interrupting her in the process of committing suicide. The family's past is gradually revealed through the revelation of the details about the relationship between the mother and daughter. 


Handwritten | 2:55 pm

Directed by Jaime Sunwoo | Distribution: | 2022 | 8:48 min. 

Handwritten by Jaime Sunwoo is a personal reflection on the significance of handwriting in her own life and throughout history, which was sparked by the fact that she has never had a consistent handwriting style.


It's Just Business | 3:04 pm

Directed by Judy Boyle | Distribution: | 2022 | 8:07 min.

It's Just Business is a short film about the crime of human trafficking and modern slavery. But the point of view is unexpected and disturbing. The film is surreal, dreamlike, non-linear and experimental.


L'incanto (Enchantment) | 3:12 pm

Directed by Chiara Caterina | Distribution: | 2021 | 20:00 min.

The voices of five women gradually fill the sound space of the film, weaving a pattern. These voices deal, in different ways, with the relationship to life through the discourse of death.


Lock the Gate | 3:32 pm

Directed by Sarah Lynn Galasso | Distribution: | 2022 | 6:36 min.

This short, 2D animation is an expression of the true events that happened during the months surrounding the birth of Lila Kate Hanson. It was important to the artist to portray the confusion, shock, isolation, fragmented memories, and intense emotions that take place during a complicated pregnancy and premature birth. 


MUG | 3:39 pm

Directed by Jo Lane | Distribution: | 2022 | 10:50 min.

A young girl longs for attention from her father following the death of her Nan and chooses a curious alternative to fill the void.



Piece of Solitude | 3:50 pm

Directed by Catalina Elaheh | Distribution: | 2021 | 9:10 min.

A lonely amnesic man lives in his paternal home. He has a habit of filling empty books with his beloved tokens of the past. During an event he remembers his childhood memories and a harmonica he lost. So, he starts to search for his lost harmonica.


The Resistance | 3:59 pm

Directed by Kara White | Distribution: | 2022 | 14:00 min.

During WWII, a British female spy finds herself trying to outwit a Nazi in occupied France.


Txotxongiloa | 4:13 pm

Directed by Sonia Estévez | Distribution: | 2022 | 10:00 min.
A female puppet appears locked in a room, prostrate on the floor and immobile. After several experiences, ropes are attached to her body and her movements begin to be more and more fluid. Each of the strings is associated with a scene related to an aspect of women's social problems.


Quarantine | 4:23 pm

Directed by Majid Mirhashemi | Distribution: | 2022 | 18:30 min.

Meet two women fighting against race-based gerrymandering in North Carolina: Val Applewhite, a plaintiff in a landmark Supreme Court case, and Moon Duchin, a mathematician who empowers organizers to use data to advocate for fairly drawn electoral maps.


TOTAL RUN TIME: 7 hours 42 minutes

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