We enjoyed a great reception at our screening at the Reel Work Labor Film Fest in Santa Cruz on the 23rd! The audience was small – only a few dozen persons – (one of the fests founders, Jeffrey Smedburg, said they go for “quality over quantity”) but all were enthusiastic about the film, all stayed for the Q and A, and all had substantive comments and questions.
They’re all serious activists and we made some good contacts, including an educator who is going to help with creating educational materials to go with institutional licenses for the film, a professional film critic who praised our work, and provision by organizers of a list of other labor fests, most of which I hadn’t heard of.
They were also a fun audience. Like audiences at the Barrymore here in Madison, they are vocal, booing the bad guys, cheering the good guys, talking back to the screen. I loved it. I like to sit in the back so I can get a sense of how people are reacting, and it was great fun to watch them watching the film.
Interestingly, they seemed especially inspired by the disability action scenes. They laughed and cheered when activists responded to a request to leave the GOP headquarters where they were having a sit-in, by saying, “We haven’t decided to leave yet.” And when Barb Vedder, one of the main disability activists, rolled back into the capitol when activists re-took it following passage of the bill in violation of the open meetings law, they began clapping for her before she even got a chance to say, “Here we go again!”
Overall, it was a wonderful experience. Many thanks to Reel Work organizers and volunteers!