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Garifuna International Film Festival Schedule Of Events

TIM, Heritage, Entertainment

Electric Lodge Theater

1416 Electric Ave ,Venice CA 90291

Purchase tickets
Friday, May 22, 2015


4th Annual Garifuna Film Festival Welcomes a Century of Change for Indigenous Cultures7:00 PM ALUNA by Kogi with  Alan Ereira

From the Heart of the World – The Elder Brothers Warning is a documentary about the Kogi people who inhabit the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountain in northern Colombia.


Direct descendants of the Tayrona people they survived Spanish Conquistadors – a feat no other tribe can claim. Long thought extinct, they reappeared from their mountain home to warn the world about the harmful damage it was causing.


This documentary explores the traditions of the Kogi people and the wisdom they have learnt in their peaceful existence with the land they inhabit.


You can visit actual Kogi villages during the hike to La Ciudad Perdida (the Lost City), the ancient city of Teyuna in the Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta mountain.


Guest speaker Deena Metzger is a poet, novelist and essayist, a healer and teacher. The state of the earth and the fate of animals and other non-human beings has been at the core of her work. She is known for her pioneering work on Story and healing. She introduced Daré, which means Council in the Shona language to North America. The Topanga Daré relies on Council, alliance with Spirit and the natural world, ancestor work, indigenous and wisdom traditions and teachings, to achieve personal transformation, community healing and social change.


Opening Ceremony


Danza Temachtia Quetzalcoatl is the resident Aztec dance group for Tia Chucha’s Centro, a cultural arts center located in the North East San Fernando Valley





YURUMEIN by Andrea Leland

A documentary about the Caribs of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.



Aliza Hava Aliza Hava is a Singer/Songwriter whose introspective lyrics explore the deepest levels of love, life and the importance of positive social change.  Lead singer of the Bay Area’s indie folk-rock band, Eve of Eden, Hava is a recipient of the Human Spirit Award presented byTalent for Humanity, an international organization bringing light to individuals who dedicate their talents towards transforming society for the common good. Her music is included on the soundtrack of the award-winning documentary, FEMME, Women Healing the World.  Visit her online at

Kayla Marin  Kaylah Marin first began writing and performing as a child with her

father, jazz saxophonist Philip Marin, who instilled in her a love of

music and dance rich within her Central American (Garifuna) roots.

Kaylah has worked with Narada Micheal Walden, Billboard Producer DJ’s

, The Perry Twins and producer Quinn Coleman, Josh Harris, Mike Rizzo,

Rod Carrillo, and Tracy Young. Her single “Oh Baby Please” debuted at

number 3 on the dance Billboard chart, maintaining the top ten spot

for over a month. The singer also scored music for the award winning

documentary “Texas Gold” and did the voiceover and score for “Just

Children,” winner of four international film festival

Guwie Possie Garifuna cultural Band was formed in  1991  22 years ago original members At that time it consisted  of three members, Simon Bernardez, Maquito Tatito Lopez and Steve Augustine Currently  with  6 members known as  the people’s band longest lasting Punta rock band based in Los Angeles California. Guwie Possie  has release 5 albums Guwie, Walagante, History, Garifunaduo, and most recent Mabusegeida Wama.


Saturday May 23rd


10 AM



with Aleks Munoz

Three hour filmmaking  workshop exploring storytelling and film production. Participants will complete a short narrative film during the 3 hour workshop.  15 youth participants will participate. Founder: FYI FILMS / Founding Partner: Urban Velour Entertainment.


1:15 PM PERSISTENCE OF VISION by Kevin Schreck

A documentary Hailed as “essential” (The Hollywood Reporter), “fascinating” (Variety), and “gripping” (The Globe and Mail), the award-winning documentary about “the greatest animated film NEVER made”




A Garifuna language teacher fights to keep his endangered language alive in the face of personal betrayal and tourism’s encroachment in Honduras.

Q & A with Filmmakers & Cast


5:30 PM RED PASSAGE by Ho Yi

A film based on true events and set in 1970s, Red Passage, is the moving and inspiring journey of a young Hong Kong boy going from a British colonial state school to a mainland Chinese run school, during the Cultural Revolution, in Hong Kong .

Q & A with Filmmakers


7:40 PM THREE KINGS OF BELIZE By Katia Paradis

The documentary film ‘Three Kings of Belize’, a movingly personal film merging three unique cultures- the Creole, the Maya and the Garifuna into an inspiring testament of hope and love in music.


9:15 PM

VIP Screening ,Speaker & Performance



Starring Alexander Arzu Jr, Paula Josephine-Franklin, John W. Godley, Iyan Evans, Jubilee Gamaneal, Walt Simpson. This is the magical world of an innocent boy, Rufus, who through his actions is guided by his Grandma with a bedtime story as he discovers “The Successor of Katunga”.


Keynote Speaker

Chief Joseph Paulino

Chief of police for the San Bernardino City Unified School District Police Department.



James Lovell is an international recording artist passionate educator, activist, multi-instrumentalist and ardent language and culture conservationist. James has worked to safeguard traditional music, dance and language by sharing Garifuna culture with captivated audiences around the world.


Sunday May 24th  



Hosted and led by  Ali Allie’ and Ruben Reyes


Do you want to make a feature film, but don’t know where to start?

This overview de-mystifies the process of how to produce a low budget feature film with limited resources, covering the stages of writing, budgeting, scheduling, casting, production, post-production and more, using actual examples from the Garifuna in Peril movie.


11:30 AM


Rushing Waters Rushing Dreams by John Cantu

is a documentary


BETTER By John Cantu

BETTER is a Web Series by John Cantu a Mexican Folk Dancer has realized her dream of becoming a professionally paid dancer only to receive the horrible news that she’d been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. She struggles to keep her dreams alive while keeping her mobility hindering disease a secret from her dance group.


1:15 PM


GRIOT’S LAMENT by Aleks Munoz

Griot’s Lament is a short film which used Michael Jackon’s lyrics as dialogue to articulate the King of Pop’s social criticism which is prevalent in his text. identifying political and social injustices.Just as Michael often did in his music, the film poses the question:


TO THE BONE Directed By Erin Li

A Film Independent Project:Involve commissioned film: A pre-teen migrant farmworker attempts to rebel against the status quo with unintended consequences for herself and her family.

Written By Silka Luisa and Erin Li, Produced By Ella Franklin, Director of Photography Chris Carrea, Editor Susumu Kimura, Associate Producer Felipe Holguin.


MOUNT EVEREST ICE FALL with TED FAIIRHURST BY TED FAIRHURST DOCUMENTARY . Shot with a GoPro helmet-mounted camera in the perspective of the climber. Powerful video images of the extraordinary Khumbu Glacier as it breaks up descending from the Western Cwm to Base camp.


ALL FOR NOTHING  a documentary made  by incarcerated youths  with  Filmmaker  Alex  Munoz  FYI FILMS


I HAD TO DO IT by Michael Flores

a short film about domestic violence .


Q & A with Filmmakers


.Performance  by Son Valleros and The Little Jaraneros– Short Bio Son Valleros is a collective building community of the Northeast San Fernando Valley. With the purpose of promoting, supporting, and learning the historical, political, and musical art of musica tradicional de cuerda, specifically the tradition of Son Jarocho music from Veracruz, Mexico.

The Little Jaraneros are students from Tia Chucha’s Centro Cultural & Bookstore’s Son Jarocho classes that have learned from maestros such as Cesar Castro, Manuel “Chuy” Sandoval, Manuel “Mapache” Ruiz, and Rosalilia Mendoza.


3:15 PM


LANGUAGE HEALERS  by Brian McDormatt

The Language Healers by  From Alaska to Oklahoma and Wisconsin to Montana, we witness stories about the importance of saving Native languages and meet some of the people who are working hard to heal these national treasures.



Clearing Boundaries  is a film about the grassroots efforts within the Garifuna community of Los Angeles, to promote the importance of cultural preservation. The Garinagu (singular Garifuna) people are located within multiple nations – many leading transnational lives between the United States and Central America. Social Media helps the “Garifuna Nation,” a term used to unite the Garinagu under one common ethnic identity, to clear the boundaries of national borders and to help create a flexible nation within nations.

Q & A with Filmmaker




The band specializes in traditional and contemporary Garifuna music. The band members bring forth decades of experience in performing and producing Garifuna music. Band leader Frankie Garcia is a master Garifuna drummer whom has traveled the globe performing Garifuna music. He became inspired to create this band in order to preserve and promote the authentic sounds of the Garifuna people. The band stays true to their origins in the Caribbean and Africa by performing various genres of Garifuna music. These genres include abeimahani, hungu-hungu, gunjai, chumba, wanaragua, paranda and the popular punta. The beautiful music of the Garifuna people highlights call and response, drums, and rhythmic varieties brought about by the maracas, turtle shells and guitar. Culcha Jam band is available for festivals, private events, educational presentations, workshops and other occasions.

Culcha Jam Band Members Frankie Garcia (Manager), Shantel Garcia, Georgette Lambey, Beulah Martinez, Ryon Flores, Oliver Robin, and Vincent Sampson. Culcha Jam is a dynamic band based in Los Angeles.


5:15 PM


FIGHT TO FORGIVE by Everyday Ghandis

Q & A with Filmmaker

Everyday Gandhis’ new documentary  THE FIGHT TO FORGIVE: from child soldiers to peace builders.


6:45 VIP Screening ,Speaker & Performance



Languages Matters by David Grubin with Bob Holman This documentary by award-winning filmmaker David Grubin The new documentary “Language Matters” explores threats to languages around the world. Jeffrey Brown recently sat down with poet and host Bob Holman to discuss the film and what’s truly lost when a language disappears.


Speaker:  Marianne Williamson

is an American spiritual teacher, author and lecturer. She has published ten books, including four New York Times number one bestsellers. She is the founder of Project Angel Food, a meals-on-wheels program that serves homebound people with AIDS in the Los Angeles area, and the co-founder of The Peace Alliance, a grass roots campaign supporting legislation to establish a United States Department of Peace. She serves on the Board of Directors of the RESULTS organization, which works to end poverty in the United States and around the world


Speaker : HELENE CARDONA She is the author of Dreaming My Animal Selves (Salmon Poetry) winner of the Pinnacle Book Award for Best Bilingual Poetry Book and the Reader’s Favorite Award, Ce que nous portons (Editions du Cygne), and The Astonished Universe (Red Hen Press). She co-wrote with John M. FitzGerald the screenplay Primate, based on his novel, and writes children stories.


Performance by PUNTA CARTEL BAND


Monday May 25th


10AM -11:20



How do I get my film seen? This basic overview covers several avenues for distributing your film in theaters, DVD, VOD and streaming outlets. Industry information resources are covered as well as film markets, film festivals, educational markets and online aggregators. Actual marketing examples are illustrated from the Garifuna in Peril movie.


11:30 AM



Western and African cultures collide in Haiti resulting in religious conflict between Christianity and Voodoo. Despite centuries of vigilant opposition from the Christian Church, Voodoo has flourished in Haiti and continues to be one of the strongest elements underlying Haitian culture. This film dispels Hollywood stereotypes and presents Voodoo as a belief system that has been passed down from African ancestor to slave to present day Haitian. Traveling from the intensely overcrowded streets of Port-au-Prince to the serenity of the Haitian countryside, the viewer comes to see how the Haitian has accepted both the Christian and Voodoo mythology for use in daily life. The highly integrated Haitian culture is truthfully revealed.


Spirit of my Mother (El Espiritu de mi Mama) By ALI ALLIE’

Sonia (Johana Martinez) is a single mother living in Los Angeles, far removed from her Garifuna—West African, Arawak and Carib Indian—roots. Haunted by memories of an American soldier she once loved and dreaming of her dead mother, Sonia searches for answers among the mundane landscape, but finds few. After getting fired from her job as a nanny, Sonia journeys to Honduras to grant her mother’s request to perform a ceremony that will let her rest in peace. As her elders teach her the sacred Garifuna ritual, Sonia begins to embrace her own nearly forgotten and stunningly rich cultural roots, as well as her identity as a mother to a daughter of her own. Set amidst the lush Honduran landscape and punctuated by traditional Garifuna music, Spirit of my Mother is a story about one woman’s transformation as she learns to embrace the past and move gracefully into the present.

Q & A with Filmmaker




1:40 PM


VELO  by Robert Corcini  

Velo is a full lengh doucmentary film focusing on contemporary Caribbean Art and featuring three artists, Jose Maria Capricorne, Nelson Carrilho and Philippe Zanolino. Art and Culture from heart of the Caribbean.


A CLEAR VISION by Interfaith Communities United For Justice and Peace               

ICUJP has for over a decade followed a clear mission — to organize communities of faith and conscience in support of Peace, Justice and human dignity in the face of war, injustice and intolerance, compelling religious communities across the country to stop blessing war and violence, by speaking truth to power to whomever is in power.



3:20 PM


SALUD by MEDDIC  is a documentary timely examination of human values and the health issues that affect us all, ¡Salud!looks at the curious case of Cuba, a cash-strapped country with what the BBC calls ‘one of the world’s best health systems.’ From the shores of Africa to the Americas, !Salud!hits the road with some of the 28,000 Cuban health professionals serving in 68 countries, and explores the hearts and minds of international medical students in Cuba — now numbering 30,000, including nearly 100 from the USA. Their stories plus testimony from experts around the world bring home the competing agendas that mark the battle for global health—and the complex realities confronting the movement to make healthcare everyone’s birth right. ¡Salud, 93 minutes,is produced and directed by Academy Award nominee Connie Field (The Life and Times of Rosie the Riveter; Freedom on My Mind) and co-produced by Gail Reed


5:20 PM


HOLY MAN BY Jennifer Jessum & Simon Joseph

The USA vs. Douglas White is the story of Douglas White, an 89 year old Lakota Sioux medicine man from Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota, who spent 17 years in federal prison for a crime he did not commit.narrated by Martin Sheen features Floyd Red Crow Westerman, Russell Means, Arvol Looking Horse, Dr. Fred Alan Wolf, Leonard Crow Dog, and many other Lakota elders and leaders.


7:00 PM


WE STILL LIVE HERE by Anne Makepeace

Tells the amazing story of the return of the Wampanoag language, a language that was silenced for more than a century.


May 26th



Garifuna Museum of Los Angeles

& Blazer Learning Center

1517 W. 48th Street ,Los Angeles CA 90062


3:00 PM


Life Choices through interactive Drama by Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Ethics

Life Choices through Interactive Drama is an adolescent program for schools developed by the Raoul Wallenberg Institute of Ethics, that engages the students in creating, and performing skits portraying real life emotional and ethical conflicts. Through the process of active engagement  with the actors, students become “spect-actors” and learn to grapple with seemingly unsolvable conflicts while exploring new thinking and perspectives that facilitate problem solving, and enhancing literacy.

Rhythm and Body Language by Olu Yemisi

This documentary  highlights Olu Yemisi’s journey as a choreographer, musician, and dancer. It includes biographical information about her as the founder and director of Olu Yemisi & Company Entertainment. Her company’s dance genres are jazz and jazz fusion which incorporate Caribbean and Afro Latin Cultures. Olu calls her brand of dance Caribbean Jazz. She is also a jazz vocalist and pop musician. Ms. Yemisi’s background, and company are showcased with enjoyable dance performances and productions at theaters and festivals. This film also displays footage from her being raised with these arts in the Washington D.C. area.


Mt. Kilimanjaro – African Safari Maasai with and by Ted Fairhust

Mount Carstensz Pyramid, Papua New Guinea by Ted Fairhust


Kibo Serengeti  by Ted Fairhurst Dare to Reach

Experience, determination and commitment. How much do you want to

succeed? How willing are you to do what you have to do to make it work. It

is not complicated but it takes resolve.

And it takes passion to want to be

there. Most important it takes knowing who you are and why you want to go



Revolutionary Medicine by Beth Geglia & Jesse Freeston

Is about the first Garifuna Hospital featuring Dr. Luther Castillo and Garifuna Community of Honduras.


Garifuna Heritage by Garifuna National Council

Garifuna cultural heritage is a documentay about the Garifuna people.


ARISE by Lori Joyce



Arise, the first documentary to capture the stories of leading global female environmental leaders, from Kenya to the Bronx.


Award-winning mother and daughter Idanha Films directors Lori Joyce and Candice Orlando worked for seven years to tell the stories in Arise of 13 impassioned, 20-to-80 year-old women, working to heal environmental injustices.  Arise captures the zeal for community organizing and positive change characteristic through the globe, says Arise Director Joyce.


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