Festival Program

This is last year’s program!  Stay tuned for the 2017 agenda!


10:30AM: DOC Shorts Program 1
THe Captain

The Captain: A Bond of Brotherhood Forged in War
Directed By Spencer Millsap
American Soldier Returns to Help Iraqi Captain Fleeing ISIS.


Square One
Directed and Produced By Ryan Slattery
Ryan is a 30 year old alcoholic, yearning to escape the torment of his own behavior. Despite relentless guilt and shame, his drinking habits have only worsened over the years. After the accumulation of countless mistakes, he finally finds the courage to seek true help. Through a journey from rock bottom, to treatment, and life thereafter, Square One highlights the challenges, thoughts, and lessons Ryan experiences along the way.


The Holistic Foundation: Breathing Love into a Community
Directed & Produced By Chris Farina
A documentary portrait of the Holistic Life Foundation and its mission bringing the benefits of mindfulness, yoga and put simply, love, to the inner-city neighborhood of west Baltimore, where two of the three founders were born and raised.

12PM: Shorts Program 1

Ebola: In Praise of Prevention
Directed By Firdaus Kharas
Produced By Firdaus Kharas, Neelley Hicks & UNICEF Togo
In Praise of Prevention is the second in a series of animated video shorts by Chocolate Moose Media focusing on Ebola in West Africa. It is designed to prevent the next outbreak of Ebola from ever happening. The first video in the series, A Poem For The Living, focused on containing the disease during the outbreak in 2014/2015, and the third video, Beyond Survival, focused on countering the stigma felt by those that survived Ebola.


Directed, Written & Produced By DJ Veliz
Lead Actors: Analee Hemann, Robert Armendariz, and Lisa Suarez
A High School Latina defends her heritage and saves a Birthday!


Runner, Runner
Written & Directed By Nic Lewis
Produced By Jody Hart
The story of two men chained together circa 1863 both are fugitive Union soldiers pursued by unscrupulous bounty hunters. It’s an examination of the basic human right to freedom, the innate need for it, and the whether or not the ultimate end justifies their savage means.


Directed & Produced By Muhammad Bayazid
Written By Samah Safi Bayazid & Muhammad Bayazid
Lead Actors: Human Alhoot and Tasneen Tarabeen
An accident has changed the life of the old man Saba forever, and the most beautiful thing in his life has become the main reason for his misery.


Waiting for Angel
Written and Directed by Elli Iliades
Produced By Andrew Del Vecchio
Lead Actors: Lilyana Guardia, Sara Pensaifini, Max Brown and Benjamin Kolody
Angel lives with her mother, Sonia, who is struggling with drug addiction and as a result, Angel has­ taken on the responsibility of looking after Johnny. But one night, Angel is pushed to the brink and must ask herself whether she is still safe living at home.


The Gram
Directed by Ryan Richmond
Written By Tiffany Black
Produced By Clifford Johnson, Khalimah Gatson, and Tiffany Black
Lead Actor: Tiffany Black
Sophi is a girl who prides herself on her looks and her ability to make things appear better online than they are in real life. In The Gram, she gives tips on how to live a lavish lifestyle and gain the attention of gentlemen suitors.

1:30PM: DOC Shorts Program 2

Boat People
Directed By Filipa Queiroz
Produced By Lina Ferreira
Written By Filipa Queiroz & Lina Ferreira
In the early 80’s, a family was literally born in a refugee camp in Macau. Three decades later the protagonists, journalists and other witnesses look back at the time when Macau became a safe haven for refugees coming from Vietnam.


Directed By Rachel Jones
Written By Chelsea Reed
Produced By Jake Roth, Chelsea Reed, Rachel Jones and Mikeala Skelton
The Harrisonburg resettlement center has resettled thousands of refugees since 1988. The staff guides the newly settled refugees to create long lasting relationships in the community in the hopes of starting them on a path to self-sufficiency. We will explore the programs and people that are in place to help transition refugees into their new homes.


For My Friends in Detention
Directed By Zebedee Parkes
Produced By Georgette Cox
‘For my Friends in Detention’ explores the impact refugee activism in Australia has on people on both sides of the fence. Drawing upon several years of observational footage, including Sarah’s first experience of a detection center her and Cali, a Tamil refugee’s relationship and activism.


The Island of Tears
Directed, Written & Produced By Erin Zimmerman
Narrator: Gordon Robertson
“The Island of Tears” follows a group of Israeli Arabs and Jews who cross political and religious lines to rescue, feed and provide medical care for refugees arriving in Lesvos, Greece. The doctors and nurses, working for the Israeli NGO IsraAid, also provide social services and therapy for the refugees.

4:30PM: DOC Shorts Program 3

Written and Directed By Heather Mooney
Produced By Ally Giannini
Featuring Daniel Trust and Sachin Manning
A Rwandan refugee and a Jamaican immigrant reconstruct the concepts of home, family and what it means to be free.”Trust” highlights the power of mentorship and the impact the Daniel Trust Foundation has had in Sachin Manning’s life.


We’re Oyster Farmers
Directed By Stefan Beaumont
Co- Directed By Crawford Watson
Executive Produced By Carl Lobue @ The Nature Conservatory
A fisherman and a scientist are out to change the waters one oyster at a time.


High Chapparal
Directed By David Freid
Produced By Mor Albalak & Molly Mayo
While many refugees take shelter in tents and athletic stadiums, this bizarre and unexpected American West setting in the middle of a Swedish forest in the middle of winter has become one of the better refugee camps in Sweden.


Fastest Woman in Africa: Rwanda’s First Female Cyclist
Directed, Written and Produced By Faustin Niyigena
Being the first black African woman to compete at 2015 UCI Road World Championships, encourages Jeanne d’Arc Girubuntu, to believe to reach the professional top level; despite the background in a family devastated by the 1994 Genocide in Rwanda.


Home on the Range
Directed, Written & Produced By Erin Rizzo, Marielena Planas and Leah Poulliot
Welcome to McLean, Virginia, eight miles from our nation’s capitol and home to 48,000 residents, 17,000 families, ten public schools, and one gun shop. Located less than one-hundred feet from an elementary school, 423 students can see through the cafeteria windows to the back door of the store itself.

6PM: Shorts Program 2

You Deserve Tomorrow
Directed & Produced By James Davis
Written By John Sarmiento and James Davis
Lead Actors: Samantha Joy Santiago-Venzlauskas, Sara Untalan, Jose Edward Duke Untalan
A Poem turned film; a letter to a suicidal best friend, to remind her that overcoming hardships will lead to a brighter future.


Directed By Mary-Kate Riehl
Produced By Devon Roddel & Dr. Cecil Bohanon
Lead Actors: Jacob Barnes and Jenny Popvich
Set in the early 20th Century, the story follows a couple of glass factory employees that struggle with the advent of technology replacing them as workers. Although one of them has some bad luck, their story takes a turn for the better.


The Invisible Truth
Directed By Jacob Ferguson
The viewer gets a glimpse of the effects of living in a home plagued by domestic violence through the mind of its most silent victim; a child.


Written & Directed By Shawn Ryan
Produced By John Ainsworth
Lead Actors: Missi Pyle, Paul DeVincenzo, John Ainsworth, Shawn Ryan, Amir Malaklou
Life can be tough, but it has finally met its match. From Writer/Director Shawn Ryan and Producer John Ainsworth comes a heart warming day in the life of a fabulous young man.


I for I
Directed By Ashleigh Coffelt
Produced By Alexandra Nicole
Lead Actors : Courtney Birk, Marc Schöttner, Jeff Chen
After reporting a sexual assault, to the disbelief of foreign officials, a young woman takes vengeance in her own hands.


Good Side/ Bad Side
Directed, Written & Produced By David Antoine
Lead Actor: David Antoine
Michael Parker is becoming frustrated and emotionally drained with the Problems he is having in his Marriage. A sexy new co-worker at Michaels Job begins to give him Attention and he likes it. GoodSide/BadSide is a Serious and Funny Look at the Internal Conflict that people face between their Conscious and their Temptation.

7PM: DOC Shorts Program 4

The Perfect Selfie
Directed, Written & Produced By Katherine Dudley
It explores the safety concerns which include emotional, physical and legal issues while going to extremes to get the perfect selfie. The purpose of this documentary is to educate people about being aware of their surroundings when taking and sharing selfies.


Where Did You Sleep Last Night?
Directed By John Baynard
Produced By Peter Baynard & John Baynard
Where Did You Sleep Last Night? follows Jean Day, a homeless woman living in Boston, as she struggles to find housing and stay sober. Navigating the rollercoaster of addiction alongside the family she’s created on the street, where will she wake up?


The Forest’s Edge
Directed, Written & Produced By Luke Fisher
The Forest’s Edge is an environmental documentary film directed by Luke Fisher; it focuses on a group of conservationists trying to protect the Las Piedras region of Peru and the complicated social and cultural issues involved with rain forest deforestation that they must confront.


The Fence
Directed, Written & Produced By Warren Pereira
THE FENCE is a Short Documentary Film that examines the controversial fence in Bandhavgarh Tiger Reserve that divides wildlife from mankind.


10:30AM: DOC Shorts Program 5

Saving Randy
Directed & Produced By Esther Wayne
A trip to the Middle East turns into a rescue mission.


Reach, Strive, Achieve
Directed & Produced By Nasreen Alkhateeb
Written By Sandra Cauffman
This is a story of how a Costa Rican girl from a poor family nurtured an improbable dream about space travel, and despite the obstacles, made that dream come true. Her determination and perseverance fueled her ability to achieve what many people thought she should not even consider.


Striking a Chord: Instruments of Healing
Directed By Susan Rockefeller
Produced By Susan Rockefeller with We Are Family Foundation
In Striking a Chord: Instruments of Healing, veterans with PTSD are finding their way back to themselves through music and art. Singer-songwriter Nell Bryden, tours U.S. military bases in Iraq. Her performances carve out a rare emotional space for soldiers whose daily routines otherwise require suppression of feelings.


Code Therapy
Directed & Produced By Divya Pathak
Written By Carl O’Reilly and Divya Pathak
Throughout the world there is a great discrepancy between the number of people who struggle with mental health issues and the availability of sufficient therapeutic services. Today new digital platforms are emerging that could help plug this gap. Code Therapy explores the potential of this new frontier in healthcare.

1:30PM: Shorts Program 3

Last Night
Directed, Written & Produced By Katy Lueck
Lead Actor: Katy Lueck
A ‘slice of life’ short following one young woman’s peaceful face-off with depression, suicide and pregnancy.


The Rational Thoughts of Raphael
Written & Directed By Paul Sekhon
Produced By Melissa Abdullah and Paul Sekhon
Lead Actor: Filip Waak
Raphael grieves over the death of his wife from cancer. He spends his time in dark contemplation and believes he knows what needs fixing in the world. This is a look inside the mind of a man who wants to give the world a wake-up call before it’s too late.


Echoes of the Sea
Directed By Miguel Rodrick John Jarlen Quiroz
Writer: John Jarlen Quiroz
Producer: Miguel Rodrick & Demente Fotografica
José is a fisherman from the Colombian Caribbean who sees how his livelihood, the only one that he knows, is slowly disappearing. Through short and simple stories he shares his struggles to make a living and the unnavoidable future that is approaching.


Bonded: The Musical
Directed By Nicole Goldstein
Written By Matthew Burniak
Produced By Rachel Jones, Nicole Goldstein & Chris Strunk
BONDED: The Musical tells the story of Dr. Adams, a young, established chemistry professor and Dr. Iona, a new hire at the university. Things go awry when the head of the Chemistry Department assigns them to co-teach Chemistry 101 together. Eventually, the two form an unlikely bond over their love for chemistry.


Directed, Written & Produced By Fokke Baarssen
Lead Actor: Hank Botwinik
In the distant future, lovebirds David and Rachel test their love for each other by using gene cards. They prove to be a match, but eternal love and technology don’t necessarily have to go hand in hand.


Zero Hour
Directed & Produced By Karl Huber
Lead Actors: Anja Akstin
A young woman is convinced that an alien she met 20 years earlier, is coming back to take her to his planet.

4:30PM: DOC Shorts Program 6
love cats

For the Love of Cats
Directed By Hasina Jamal
Produced By Erika Singletary
Don Juan is a feral cat from Miami who somehow found his way to Baltimore. Meet Jeanne App, the spunky volunteer who rescues this charmer. Ms. App has had a lifetime of saving kitties. Her calling is to rescue them, be agile, and make a difference.


The Good Fight
Directed, Written & Produced By Chrissan Hessing
Ryhana Dawood is a certified blackbelt and the founder of MARTIAL SMARTS, a non-profit organization that encourages confidence and empowerment for women through free self-defense workshops in the Greater Toronto Area. As a devout Muslim, she combines elements of Islam in Martial Arts, and challenges the common perception of Muslim women in combative sports.


Rainbow Day Camp
Directed, Written & Produced By Horacio Marquinez
Thousands of young people are pushing the boundaries of gender. In 2015 a summer camp was created in the Bay Area to provide youth a safe and fun place to express their identity. This documentary gives a view of the camp as a unique yet simple and quotidian universe, the kids, their parents and allies.