UCR Student Films Premiere May 15

Actor Danny Glover will discuss social justice issues and film May 18 as part of Media and Cultural Studies Student Film Festival

collage of images from films

Films produced by students in the Department of Media and Cultural Studies will screen May 15.

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — Student films that probe life, love and thorny social issues will premiere in UC Riverside’s 2nd Annual Media and Cultural Studies Student Film Festival that begins May 15 and concludes with an appearance by award-winning actor and humanitarian Danny Glover on May 18.

The event features the screening of 18 student films on Thursday, May 15, beginning at 6:30 p.m. at the University Village 10 Theaters. Glover will discuss social justice issues and film on Sunday, May 18, at 12:30 p.m. at the Riverside Convention Center, Ballroom A and B. Doors open for the film screenings at 6:30 p.m. The first 25 people to walk through the doors at the UV 10 Theaters will receive a free 46-ounce popcorn.

Glover will be in Riverside thanks to the efforts of Arizona State University professors C.A. Griffith and H.L.T. Quan. The Arizona scholars will interview him from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. Griffith and Quan are co-directors of the award-winning film “Mountains that Take Wing.”

Both events are free and open to the public. An awards banquet for student filmmakers, faculty and staff will be held Friday, May 16.

“These student films run the gamut of genres, from documentaries, animation and horror to comedy and experimental,” said Lan Duong, associate professor of media and cultural studies and the event’s faculty organizer. “There is a lot of talent at UC Riverside, and this event showcases that talent.”

A student screening committee selected 18 films from 35 submitted.  Most of the films were produced by undergraduate students.

Many of the films demonstrate a sense of place, especially about Riverside and its history, Duong said. For example, one film examines Groovers, an independent retail record store near UC Riverside that specializes in some of the greatest and most obscure vinyl recordings. In another, a girl awakens from a late-afternoon nap on a college campus and realizes that someone is pursuing her.

still of Glover from Beloved

Danny Glover will discuss social justice and film at the Riverside Convention Center on May 18.

Glover appeared in the popular “Lethal Weapon” films as well as smaller, independent films, and won an Independent Spirit Award for Best Actor in the award-winning “To Sleep With Anger,” which he executive produced. His work on television has received several Emmy nominations. The popular actor also is known for his community activism and philanthropy, particularly his advocacy for economic justice, and access to health care and education programs in the United States and Africa. He has served as a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations Development Program and currently serves as UNICEF Ambassador. Glover co-founded Louverture Films, dedicated to the development and production of films of historical relevance, social purpose, commercial value and artistic integrity, in 2005.

The film festival is presented by the UCR Department of Media and Cultural Studies and is co-sponsored by the Chicano Student Association and the Department of Comparative Literature.

Film screenings

  • “Make It In LA!” – Director, Raymond Gutierrez. A look into the work life of director Jonathan Chia. Running time: (3:20)
  • “We are the 1%” – Director, Jose Gonzalez. A protester and full-time UC Riverside student passionately voices his opinion on many of today’s student movements. (12:08)
  • “She’s Already Made Up Her Mind” – Director, Mickenzie Denholtz. A woman makes the decision to leave town and abandon the miseries of her past to find herself, despite losing her best friend in the process. (5:27)
  • “This Long Walk” – Director, Janet Hernandez. The life and struggles of Nelson Mandela through the experiences of two figures incorporating the same space in a modern-day setting. (5:06)
  • “Open House” – Director, Richard Rodriguez. An expecting newlywed couple think they’ve found the perfect new home. (12:27)
  • “Aftershock” – Director, Allison Moore. Examining Islamophobia post 9/11. (9:00)
  • “The Last Shot” – Director, Bryson McNally. Gabriel needs someone to get him breakfast in the morning, so he challenges Erica to a drinking contest: Loser buys breakfast. (4:26)
  • “Groovers” – Director, Sterling Hampton IV. Groovers is an independent retail record store near UC Riverside, specializing in some of the greatest and most obscure vinyl recordings. (9:40)
  • “The Girl” – Director, Sungwook Min. Late afternoon on a college campus, a girl awakens from a nap and soon realizes that someone is pursuing her. (7:22)


  • “The Gambit: Episode 1” – Director, Hisonni Johnson, with special guest directors Caslin Rose, Genaro Marzan, Colleen Dallons. A group of disgruntled ex-cops take a sport arena and the employees inside hostage in an elaborate plan to clear their names. (6:44)
  • “Infiltration” – Director, Josiah Yu. A secret briefcase is stolen from Sifer Industries, forcing the CEO to return and investigate the situation. (8:16)
  • “A Bee Stumbled Out” – Director, Nate Hochstetler. A girl and a boy meet and believe destiny has brought them together. (2:45)
  • “Captivate the Light” – Director, Nate Océan. Two dancers fall in love, realizing that being vulnerable is the only way to feel true pleasure. But when that love disappears, they do too. (3:13)
  • “Sunshine” – Director, Sungwook Min. A girl enjoys the soothing afternoon sunshine of California. (3:33)
  • “Hide & Go Seek” – Director, Jeffrey Chang. A simple childhood game can turn into a nightmare. (7:40)
  • “Ties” – Directors, David Moriya and Jared Robbins. After starting a relationship with his student Shannon, philosophy teacher Sam Clark uses philosophy to rationalize his behavior. (16:10)
  • “Fate & Destiny” – Director, Lily Shanahan. Fate brings Kyle Miller face to face with the man who killed his best friend. (8:28)
  • “So Slowly We Decay” – Director, Saumene Mehrdady. Jacob deals with the aftermath of his best friend’s suicide and the shallow people in his small, sad suburban hometown. (28:31)


Media Contact

Tel: (951) 827-7847
E-mail: bettye.miller@ucr.edu
Twitter: bettyemiller

Additional Contacts

Lan Duong
Tel: (951) 827-5681
E-mail: lan.duong@ucr.edu

Anthonia Nneamaka Onyejekwe
E-mail: anthonia.onyejekwe@email.ucr.edu

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