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February 7, 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM | Chazen Auditorium
USA, 1920, HD Projection, 79 min.
Directed by Oscar Micheaux
Cast: Evelyn Preer, William Starks, Mattie Edwards
The earliest existing example of a feature film directed by an African-American, Within Our Gates was actually the second feature from pioneering independent filmmaker Micheaux. The compelling story of an idealistic young woman’s attempts to raise money for an elementary school in the black community, the movie is distinguished by Micheaux’s radical use of flashbacks.
In celebration of Black History Month and in conjunction with the Chazen’s exhibition Southern Rites (January 25–May 12), the Cinematheque will co-present two landmark films in February by significant directors. Legendary independent auteur Oscar Micheaux’s Within Our Gates (1920) is the oldest existing feature-length movie by an African-American filmmaker and Gordon Parks The Learning Tree (1969) is the first film directed by an African-American for a major Hollywood studio.