This week “Frame of Mind” features an array of short films from various filmmakers based in Texas.
“Reel Texas: Real Characters” highlights our state’s diverse community of filmmakers and the individuals they encounter. Chances are, you will find a topic you can connect to – whether’s its a movement, a community, or an urge to advocate.
Molly and Ann
This film by Paul Stekler explores the remarkable relationship Texas Governor Ann Richards and journalist Molly Ivins had with each other and with Texas. As a journalist, Ivins was a go-getter, a voice for the people on the margins of society. She spoke her mind, especially when her voice needed to reach someone in office. Richards also broke through Texas politics and was one of the few women, at her time, making waves in the world of politics. Both figures will be remembered as leaders for women and minorities alike. Their optimism for their state of Texas still resonates.
Rania Elmalky, a journalist and documentary filmmaker, presents Mohamed Soltan’s life through animation in 489 days. Soltan was detained under false pretenses and held captive in Egypt from August 2013 to May 2015. Elmalky chose a rotoscope technique to transport her audience to each scene. As an Egyptian, Elmalky was exposed to the injustices in her country. She wanted to draw attention to human rights violations. Elmalky told me she hopes that Egyptian-Americans, and others, “will lobby senators to change [U.S. policy] that will change the relationship with the two countries [especially] towards the current regime.” Elmalky believes that everyone can make an impact.
Our third film shines a light on an important issue: human trafficking. Unbound is also the name of an organization that educates about trafficking. The film raises awareness of the issue in Texas. You’ll hear the story of a victim who now advocates for other victims. Unbound is a call for advocacy and an eye-opener to what one victim calls a “traumatic, dehumanizing crime.”
The show ends with a spotlight on the Czech Stop, the hub for delicious pastries in West, Texas. Kolache, Texas takes us to where it all begins… the kitchen. The kitchen is a community in itself. Every day there is someone in the kitchen adding flour, mixing eggs, layering blueberries, you name it. This mom-and-pop shop not only values its customers, but its employees. No one kolache or baked good is the same and the Czech Stop prides itself in its original ways.