Brad Lichtenstein highly acclaimed documentary As Goes Janesville will be screening this Sunday, February 10 at the New Jersey Film Festival!
As Goes Janesville is a cinema verité styled documentary that records two years in the lives of laid-off workers, business leaders, and elected officials all trying to reinvent their lives and their midwestern town amid the closure of their GM plant and America’s worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. The story begins shortly after the factory closed in 2008 and continues through a standoff between the newly elected governor and 14 Democratic state senators, one of whom is a main character in the film.
The film also follows Cindy Deegan, a factory worker going back to school to train for a non-union job that pays a third of her former wage — a job she must land before unemployment benefits expire. Gayle Listenbee and Angie Hodges both leave family behind to follow their union jobs with GM plants to other states. The film goes behind the scenes with business leader Mary Willmer-Sheedy as she co-chairs a private economic development initiative that is supported by the governor in an effort to woo companies to town. We also see the crisis through the eyes of Tim Cullen from the moment he first tries to persuade GM to return to town until he is elected to the state Senate as a Democrat and eventually, flees the state to stop the governor’s anti-union initiatives.
Both a microcosm of America’s economic crisis and a deep immersion in the country’s tug-of-war over labor relations, As Goes Janesville offers critical insight and heart wrenching humanity as the United States enters an election season that has already engulfed the nation in an inflamed and polarizing fight over how we should realize the American Dream, if we can realize it all.
Check out the trailer: http://vimeo.com/53693696
Here is more info on this film screening:
Melodico - Valerio Ciriaci (Brooklyn, New York)
A short documentary chronicling the life of Tony Maiorino, a modern-day Italian immigrant living in the Bronx. Tony's a normal guy on the surface. He runs a barbershop, he raises his family, he has his vices, but Tony hides a passion: between customers, the barber turns singer, trading in his scissors for a keyboard and microphone as he prepares to sing in the Festival of Saint Anthony, the largest Italian community event in New York City. A film about the search for solidarity buoyed by nostalgia for a land left behind. 2012; 14 min. With an introduction and Q+A session by director Valerio Ciriaci!
As Goes Janesville - Brad Lichtenstein (Milwaukee, Wisconsin)
As Goes Janesville goes to the front lines over the future of America's middle class – by insightfully tracking the recent battle over union rights in Wisconsin, and by focusing on the hometown of the former Republican vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan. First, General Motors shut down Janesville's century-old auto plant, leading to massive layoffs. Then, newly elected governor Scott Walker ignited a firestorm by ending collective bargaining and unleashing a protest movement that led to his recall election. Director Brad Lichtenstein followed the lives of Janesville’s auto workers for over three years, as they tried to save their jobs. 2012; 83 min.
Sunday—February 10, 2013
Voorhees Hall #105, Rutgers University,
71 Hamilton Street, New Brunswick, New Jersey
$10=General; $9=Students+Seniors; $8=Rutgers Film Co-op Friends
Jimmy John’s of New Brunswick will be providing free sandwiches prior to this screening!
More info is available at www.njfilmfest.com or 848-932-8482!