Documentaries

View selections from recent PFP documentaries here. . . .(Or buy online.)

I chooseI choose to stay here. This documentary follows a group of people opposing the city of Philadelphia's "takings" of private homes: the little-known downside of the city's "redevelopment" initiative. "I choose to stay here" shows people fighting city hall for the right to define and preserve viable communities, and tracks their struggle for justice. The video is a collaboration between the Community Leadership Institute, the Philadelphia Folklore Project and filmmaker Barry Dornfeld. Directed by Rosemary Cubas, Barry Dornfeld, Debora Kodish, Elizabeth Segarra and Iris Torres. Music by Joaquin Rivera. 23 minutes. 2004. $15 for individuals, $50 for institutions for VHS ( 0-9644937-7-2) or DVD (0-9644937-5-6)

"'Look forward and carry on the past": stories from Philadelphia's Chinatown" is PFP's new documentary video about Philadelphia's Chinatown, illustrating the strength and complexity of this neighborhood. The video attends to the role of folk arts and community cultural expression in the community's continuing struggles for respect and survival. Touching on community efforts to stop a stadium from being built in the neighborhood (one of many fights over land grabs and "development"), and on other occasions when the community comes together (including Mid-Autumn Festival and New Year), the documentary attends to the everyday interactions, relationships, and labor - so often overlooked - that build and defend endangered communities. 26 minutes. 2002. $15 for individuals, $50 for institutions.

PlentyPlenty of Good Women Dancers: African American Women Hoofers from Philadelphia. Plenty of Good Women Dancers celebrates exceptional Philadelphia-area African American women tap dancers whose amazing careers reached from the 1930s to the 1990s. Restricted to few roles, often unnamed, these women have rarely received credit for their artistry and accomplishments. Three featured artists, Edith "Baby Edwards"Hunt, Hortense Allen Jordan and Libby Spencer, reflect on their decades-long careers. They also show that they still have what it takes, joining with a cast of more than 40 to produce a show that gives today's audiences a sense of what tap dance is all about. Glamorous historic film clips, photographs, and dancers' own vivid recollections, provide a dynamic portrait of veteran women hoofers who fought discrimination with style and savvy. Featuring Edith "Baby Edwards" Hunt, Libby Spencer, and Hortense Allen Jordan, with LaVaughn Robinson, Germaine Ingram, Delores and Dave McHarris, Kitty deChavis, Isabelle Fambro and the cast of "Stepping in Time," and historic footage of Jeni LeGon, Cora LaRedd, Dottie Saulters, Juanita Pitts, the Miller Brothers and Lois, the Four Covans, and others. Directed by Germaine Ingram, Debora Kodish, and Barry Dornfeld. Produced by Debora Kodish and Barry Dornfeld. Produced with the assistance of the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, The National Endowment for the Arts, and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts. 53 minutes. 2004. $24.95 individuals, $65 institutions. ISBN 0-9644937-6-4.