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Related Categories: East Bay | Animal Liberation
View other events for the week of 8/ 5/2009
Bums' Paradise
Date Wednesday August 05
Time 7:30 PM - 9:30 PM
Location Details
Humanist Hall
390 27th Street
midtown Oakland, between Telegraph and Broadway
Event Type Screening
EmailHumanistHall [at]
The evening begins with an optional social hour and pot luck supper at 6:00 pm,
followed by the film at 7:30 pm, followed by a discussion at the end of the film.


This unique local film depicts the lives of people who lived in the ten-year-old Albany Landfill community prior to their eviction. The film follows them through their eviction and documents them one month afterwards. But instead of being a documentary about homelessness, about bums, this film considers the question: What if the homeless ─ the indigent, the bums ─ told their own stories?

This is exactly what filmmakers Tomas McCabe and Andrei Rozen set out to explore with the Albany Landfill residents. Both McCabe and Rozen shot for five months. Landfill resident Robert "Rabbit" Barringer was also given a camera to film life as he experienced it as a resident on the Landfill. Rabbit's sophisticated drawings, eloquence, and college education are a metaphor for the short distance between us and a life on the Landfill. He stands as a bridge, showing us how fate alone separates us from a life on the streets.

What unfolds is a rich and complex story showing the full spectrum of human experience. We see segments on love, family, home, politics, community, art, insanity, and addiction. But the film emphasizes the residents' concepts of community and the amazing art that they created. We see the lifestyle they created together and the codes of protocol they lived by which included sophisticated ideas such as community meetings to discuss problems. And art blossomed there because the residents were "allowed to live free of public scorn and scrutiny and the daily harassment of police." In this film, we know the residents and they're not just faceless panhandlers. They're a poignant reminder of what we lose when we lose the human face of homelessness.

Wheelchair accessible around the corner at 411 28th Street

$5 donations are accepted
Added to the calendar on Friday Jul 17th, 2009 10:38 PM
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