ITVS Archive




Indie Lens Pop-up Film Archive

About Indie Lens Pop-Up


Indie Lens Pop-Up is a neighborhood series that brings people together for film screenings and community-driven conversations. Featuring documentaries seen on the PBS series Independent Lens, Indie Lens Pop-Up draws local residents, leaders, and organizations together to discuss what matters most, from newsworthy topics to family and relationships. Make friends, share stories, and join the conversation. Can't attend in person? Find Independent Lens on Facebook for information on our online Pop-Up events.

Mission Statement - The Independent Television Service (ITVS) brings independently-produced, high-quality public broadcast and new media programs to local, national and international audiences. The independent producers who create ITVS programs take creative risks, tackle complex issues and express points of view seldom explored in the mass media. ITVS programs enrich the cultural landscape with the voices and visions of underrepresented communities, and reflect the interests and concerns of a diverse society.


 Stockton has the rights to show the following films for educational and community events:


List of Films by Title (alphabetical):

  • American Denial

  • A Path Appears

  • The Armor of Light

  • Autism in Love

  • Black Panthers

  • Evolution of a Criminal

  • In Football We Trust

  • The Island President

  • Las Marthas

  • Makers: Women in Comedy

  • Makers: Women in Hollywood

  • Makers: Women in Space

  • Medora

  • Mimi and Dona

  • Peace Officer

  • Stray Dog

  • The New Black

  • The Powerbroker

  • The Revolutionary Optimist

  • The State of Arizona

  • The Trial of Muhammad Ali

  • T-Rex

American Denial

Filmmakers: Llewellyn Smith, Christine Herbes-Sommers, Kelly Thomson

Topics: Race, Psychology, Sociology

About the Film:  Follow the story of Swedish researcher Gunnar Myrdal whose landmark 1944 study, An American Dilemma, probed deep into the United States' racial psyche. The film weaves a narrative that exposes some of the potential underlying causes of racial biases still rooted in America’s systems and institutions today. An intellectual social visionary who later won a Nobel Prize in economics, Myrdal first visited the Jim Crow South at the invitation of the Carnegie Corporation in 1938, where he was “shocked to the core by all the evils [he] saw.” With a team of scholars that included black political scientist Ralph Bunche, Myrdal wrote his massive 1,500-page investigation of race, now considered a classic. An American Dilemma challenged the veracity of the American creed of equality, justice, and liberty for all. It argued that critically implicit in that creed — which Myrdal called America’s “state religion” — was a more shameful conflict: white Americans explained away the lack of opportunity for blacks by labeling them inferior. Myrdal argued that this view justified practices and policies that openly undermined and oppressed the lives of black citizens. Seventy years later, are we still a society living in this state of denial, in an era marked by the election of the nation’s first black president? American Denial sheds light on the unconscious political and moral world of modern Americans, using archival footage, newsreels, nightly news reports, and rare southern home movies from the ‘30s and ‘40s, as well as research footage, websites, and YouTube films showing psychological testing of racial attitudes. Exploring “stop-and-frisk” practices, the incarceration crisis, and racially-patterned poverty, the film features a wide array of historians, psychologists, and sociologists who offer expert insight and share their own personal, unsettling stories. The result is a unique and provocative film that challenges our assumptions about who we are and what we really believe.

A Path Appears (parts 1, 2, 3)

Filmmakers: Maro Chermayeff

Topics: Sex Trafficking, Violence to Women, Teen Pregnancy, child/human slavery

About the Film: A Path Appears, from the creative team behind the series Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, follows Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn and a group of dedicated actor/advocates to Colombia, Haiti, Kenya, and throughout the United States. They uncover the harshest forms of gender inequality, the devastating impact of poverty and the ripple effects that follow: including sex trafficking, teen-pregnancy, gender-based violence, child slavery and the effective solutions being forged to combat them.

The three-part series will take viewers on a journey across the country, and across the globe, to drive home the universality of gender inequality and the roots of vulnerability. The series, produced by Show of Force, will lead audiences to a deeper understanding of these critical issues and the proven methods of bringing about change.

Evolution of a Criminal

Filmmakers: Darius Clark Monroe

Topics: Poverty, Teen-Crime, Incarceration, Inequality in Incarceration  

About the Film: How does a 16-year-old evolve into a bank robber? In Evolution of a Criminal, filmmaker Darius Clark Monroe explores what led him to pull a heist as a teenager in Texas, and returns to the scene of the crime. By interviewing family members, close friends, and mentors, we learn about his transformation from a joyous childhood to the moment he realized the severity of his family’s financial problems, and how their struggles changed his outlook on his own life.

Returning to his neighborhood several years after the crime, Monroe creates an incredibly intimate and personal journey of reflection and forgiveness while beautifully examining lower class struggles, the desperation of a teen under pressure, and the emotional impact that rippled in the aftermath of that day

The Island President

Filmmakers: Jon Shenk

Topics: Politics/Civics, International Affairs  

About the Film: The Island President tells the story of President Mohamed Nasheed of Maldives, a man confronting a problem greater than one any other world leader has ever faced—the literal survival of his country and everyone in it. After leading a 20-year pro democracy movement against the brutal regime of Maumoon Abdul Gayoom and surviving repeated imprisonments and torture, Nasheed became president at 41, only to encounter a far more implacable adversary than a dictator— the ocean. Considered the lowest-lying country in the world, Maldives would be inundated with a rise of a mere three meters in sea level, rendering the country practically unlivable. Unless the larger countries of the world make dramatic changes in their greenhouse-gas emissions, Maldives, like a modern Atlantis, will disappear under the waves. Democracy came to Maldives, a Sunni Muslim country, in 2008. What made the Maldives movement different from the ones that have followed it in the Middle East is the existence of a clear opposition party, the Maldivian Democratic Party (MDP), whose co-founder, Nasheed, was a popular and charismatic leader ready to usher his country into democracy. Educated in Sri Lanka and England, Nasheed proved to be an unusually shrewd and sophisticated politician who grasped that the only way he could stand up to the catastrophic issues of climate change facing his country would be to take Maldives’s cause to the world stage. The film captures Nasheed’s first year in office, a time when he influences the direction of international events in a way that few leaders have ever done, even in countries many times the size of Maldives. Nasheed’s story culminates in his trip to the Copenhagen Climate Summit in 2009, where the film provides a rare glimpse of the political horse trading that goes on at such a top-level global assembly. Nasheed is unusually candid about revealing his strategies: leveraging Maldives’s underdog position, harnessing the power of media, and overcoming deadlocks through an appeal to unity with other developing nations. Despite his country’s dire situation, Nasheed remains cool, pragmatic, and flexible, willing to compromise and try again another day. When all hope fades for any kind of written accord to be signed, Nasheed makes a stirring speech, which salvages an agreement. While many judge Copenhagen a failure, it marked the first time in history that China, India, and the United States agreed to reduce carbon emissions

Las Marthas

Filmmakers: Cristina Ibarra, Erin Ploss

Topics: Gender-norms, cross-cultural reference, historical reference, American-Mexican relations

About the Film: In 1939, the Society of Martha Washington was founded to usher each year's debutantes (called "Marthas") into proper society at the Colonial Pageant and Ball. The girls' attendants also dress as figures from America's colonial history and participate in traditional ceremonies.The centerpiece of the festivities is the Martha Washington Pageant and Ball, when the girls are presented in elaborate dresses that take up to a year to create.The festival celebration — which dates from the aftermath of the US-Mexican War and was shaped by the tensions following the influx of Anglo migrants to the newly American state of Texas — resonates anew in a time of economic uncertainty and political tension over immigration. Still, the Washington Celebration has managed to persevere and even flourish, thanks in large part to the Mexican American girls who carry this gilded tradition on their young shoulders.

Makers: Women in Comedy

Filmmakers: Heidi Ewing, Rachel Grady

Topics: Gender in Media, Gender-norms, alternative narrative, Women’s Movement of 1970’s

About the Film: WOMEN IN COMEDY tracks the rise of women in the world of comedy, from the “dangerous” comedy of 70s sitcoms like Norman Lear’s Maude to the groundbreaking women of the 1980s American comedy club boom and building to today’s multifaceted landscape. Today, movies like Bridesmaids break box office records and the women of Saturday Night Live are often more famous than their male counterparts, but it didn’t start out that way. Contemporary comics, including Chelsea Handler, Margaret Cho, Mo’Nique, Sarah Silverman, Joan Rivers,Ellen DeGeneres, Jane Lynch and Kathy Griffin, talk about where women started in this competitive, male-dominated profession and where they are determined to go. Narrated byLeslie Mann.

Makers: Women in Hollywood

Filmmakers: Linda Goldstein Knowlton, Produced by Rory Kennedy

Topics: Gender in Media, Gender-norms, alternative narrative, Women’s Movement of 1970’s

About the Film: WOMEN IN HOLLYWOOD showcases the women of showbiz, from the earliest pioneers to present-day power players, as they influence the creation of one of the country’s biggest commodities: entertainment. Audiences hear from actress-producer-activist Jane Fonda, television powerhouse Shonda Rhimes, who created Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal; screenwriter Linda Woolverton, who re-imagined the traditional Disney princess by making Belle (Beauty and the Beast) a self-possessed, strong-willed young woman; writer-director-actress Lena Dunham, who mines comedy and drama gold by exploring what it’s really like to be a young woman today, and six-time Academy Award nominee Glenn Close. The film is narrated by Julia Roberts.

Makers: Women in Hollywood

Filmmakers: Michael Epstein and Sara Wolitzky, Directed by Michael Epstein

Topics: STEM Programs, Gender-norms, Women’s Movement of 1970’s

About the Film: WOMEN IN SPACE traces the history of women pioneers in the U.S. space program. Some, like aviators Wally Funk and Jerrie Cobb, passed the same grueling tests as male astronauts, only to be dismissed by NASA, the military, and even Lyndon Johnson, as a distraction. It wasn’t until 1995 that Eileen Collins became the first woman to pilot a spacecraft. The program includes interviews with Collins, as well as Sally Ride’s classmates Shannon Lucid, Rhea Seddon and Kathryn Sullivan, and features Mae Jemison, the first woman of color astronaut, and Peggy Whitson, the first female commander of the International Space Station. The hour ends with the next generation of women engineers, mathematicians and astronauts—the new group of pioneers, like Marleen Martinez, who continue to make small but significant steps forward. Narrated by Jodie Foster.


Filmmakers: Andrew Cohn, Davy Rothbart, Rachael Counce

Topics: Small-town America, Poverty, Sports as Escape, drug use, “Anti-Hoosiers”

About the Film: Years ago, Medora, Indiana was a booming rural community with prosperous farms, an automotive parts factory, a brick plant, and a thriving middle class. The factories have since closed, crippling Medora's economy and its pride. The population has slowly dwindled to around 500 people. Drug use is common, the school faces consolidation, and as one resident put it, “This town's on the ropes.”

Medora follows the down-but-not-out Medora Hornets varsity basketball team over the course of the 2011 season, capturing the players’ stories both on and off the court. The Hornets were riding a brutal losing streak when we arrived, and the team’s struggle to compete bears eerie resonances with the town’s fight for survival.

Medora is an in-depth, deeply personal look at small-town life, a thrilling, underdog basketball story, and an inspiring tale of a community refusing to give up hope despite the brutal odds stacked against them. On a grander scale, it’s a film about America, and the thousands of small towns across the country facing the same fight. As one towns-person told us, “Once we lose these small towns, we can't get them back."

The New Black

Filmmakers: Yorubo Richen

Topics: LGBT Rights, Marriage Equality, Multiple Intersections, Minority Rights, African American Narrative

About the Film:The New Black is a documentary that tells the story of how the African-American community is grappling with the gay rights issue in light of the recent gay marriage movement and the fight over civil rights. The film documents activists, families and clergy on both sides of the campaign to legalize gay marriage and examines homophobia in the black community’s institutional pillar—the black church and reveals the Christian right wing’s strategy of exploiting this phenomenon in order to pursue an anti-gay political agenda. The New Black takes viewers into the pews and onto the streets and provides a seat at the kitchen table as it tells the story of the historic fight to win marriage equality in Maryland and charts the evolution of this divisive issue within the black community.

The Powerbroker

Filmmakers: Bonnie Boswell, Christine Khalafian, Taylor Hamilton

Topics: Civil Rights, African American Narrative, Race  

About the Film:Whitney M. Young, Jr. was one of the most celebrated — and controversial — leaders of the civil rights era. The Powerbroker: Whitney Young's Fight for Civil Rights follows his journey from segregated Kentucky to head of the National Urban League. Unique among black leaders, he took the fight directly to the powerful white elite, gaining allies in business and government, including three presidents. Young had the difficult tasks of calming the fears of white allies, relieving the doubts of fellow civil rights leaders, and responding to attacks from the militant Black Power movement.

The Revolutionary Optimist

Filmmakers:nicole Newnham Maren Grainger-Monsen

Topics: Water Rights, Activist, Child Activist, Child Labor, India, Civic/Political Issues, Poverty  

About the Film:Amlan Ganguly empowers children to become activists and educators, with powerful results. The Revolutionary Optimists follows him as he attempts to replicate his work in the brick fields outside the city, where children live and work in unimaginable conditions.

Using street theater, puppetry, and dance as their weapons, the children in Calcutta's slums have cut their neighborhoods' malaria and diarrhea rates in half, and turned former garbage dumps into playing fields. Now, pushing at the limits of optimism, Amlan is attempting to take his work into the brickfields outside Calcutta, where spend their days making and carrying bricks using methods unchanged by centuries.

The Revolutionary Optimists proposes a workable solution to intractable problems associated with poverty, including preventable diseases and ineffectual governance. Ganguly's story suggests that education and child empowerment are crucial keys to lifting entire societies out of hopelessness.


The State of Arizona

Filmmakers: Carlos Sandoval, Catherine Tambini

Topics: Immigration Rights, Immigration Reform, US/Mexico Relations, Latino/a Rights, Civic/Political

About the Film: This vérité documentary captures the explosive emotions and complex realities behind Arizona’s headline-grabbing struggle with illegal immigration. Tracking the year after Arizona passes SB1070, its controversial “papers please” law, the film tells the stories of Arizonans on all sides of this divisive issue and depicts a state and its people testing the edges of our democratic values.

Frustrated with federal inaction and border issues, Arizona ignites a national maelstrom. Supporters call it a common sense law-enforcement tool; opponents see it as inevitably leading to racial profiling. SB1070’s stated intent is to make life so miserable for people that they will self-deport, challenging the civic sensibilities of many.

The film interweaves the volatile themes of immigration and race portrayed through a mosaic of characters and their responses to SB1070. We see Arizonans roiled by the pending law. Neighborhoods empty, businesses shutter, and immigrants flee the state. Those who choose to stay organize boycotts, mass demonstrations, daring acts of civil disobedience, and prepare families for the possibility of separation by sudden deportation. In contrast, the film also travels deep into the spirit of the newly empowered Tea Party movement for whom illegal immigration is a flashpoint.

Arizona’s enforcement-led policy, which grew out of its unique position as the frontline border state, is reshaping the national conversation around immigration reform. With dozens of states considering a similar approach, The State of Arizona holds a mirror and asks Americans who they are, and who they want to be.

The Trials of Muhammad Ali

Filmmakers: Bill Siegel, Leon Gast, Justine Nagan, Gordon Quinn, Rachel Pikelny

Topics: Race, Religion, US Military Service, SCOTUS, Nation of Islam, Civic/Political, Civil Rights

About the Film: The Trials of Muhammad Ali is a feature-length documentary film covering Ali’s toughest bout, his battle to overturn the five-year prison sentence he received for refusing U.S. military service. Trials is not a boxing film. It is a fight film tracing a formative period in Ali’s life, one that is remarkably unknown to young people today and tragically neglected by those who remember him as a boxer, but overlook how controversial he was when he first took center stage.