AUDIENCE AWARD WINNERS:
BEST LATINO FILM: THE INITIATION
Theme of night: Feeling like an outsider.
NOTE: Festival took place during the COVID-19 virus lockdown so all screenings were held in private.
Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Videos:
The beginning of a (temporary) new era.
See you at the festivals. Whenever that happens!
– Matthew Toffolo
Lizette Barrera is a Chicana Filmmaker from Lewisville, Texas. Based in Dallas/Fort Worth and Austin, TX.Her film Mosca (Fly) is in distribution with HBO and her Latest film Chicle (Gum) will be having its World Premiere at SXSW. Winner of Texas Archive of the Moving Image Award (Cine las Americas) and Filmmaker to Watch for (Women Texas Film Festival).Films have shown at Maryland Film Festival, Austin Film Festival, San Diego Latino Festival, Oak Cliff Film Festival, Cine Las Americas Festival, Nalip Org finalist for the Latino Lens Fest & Showcase Shorts Program, DallasVideoFest, AFS Showcase at SXSW, Women Texas Film Festival, Flyway Film Festival, Semi-Finalist Miami Short Film Festival, Semi-Finalist Frame of Mind, Asian Film Festival of Dallas, Longhorn Showcase at SXSW, Hill Country Film Festival, Los Angeles CineFest, and CineFestival.
MFA in Film Production at The University of Texas.
Senior Lecturer at The University of Texas at Arlington.
Represented by Inclusion Managment.
Growing up in the old city of Cairo in Egypt, Amir was captivated by filmmaking in all its forms and roots, as an artistic tool of expression and fulfillment.
In his teen years Amir immigrated to the United Sates with his parents and younger brother, leaving behind a cultural heritage that he continues to cherish. Starting a new chapter in California his new home, he studied and practiced electrical engineering in the field of Renewable Energy. Simultaneously, he persevered through self-education to learn the craft of filmmaking and in 2019 he wrapped up his first short film ‘The Initiation’ which will premiere in 2020.Director Statement
Roaming the colorful streets of Oakland in California, I am constantly nudged by its many contrasts. You can obviously see extreme wealth in privileged neighborhoods, whilst the other side of the fence is smeared with severe poverty and hardship, in neighborhoods mostly inhabited by immigrants and minorities, who are trapped with no other place to flee to.
In this film I wanted to recapture some of the poetic realism styles presented by French Cinema in the 1930’s, to shed some light on environments that establish hateful and unforgiving forces, while neglecting creative outlets and labeling them as distasteful.
We perceive the graffiti portraits through David, a homeless man and a silent narrator. He is the manifestation of a neighborhood abandoned and neglected by society. Through him we encounter Pedro a teenage Latino Graffiti Artist, who is trying to find a voice in life. The narrative examines the limited choices that life had to offer this emerging youngster, in a quarantined community where many youths are in search of identity and fellowship.