Film Forum is pleased to present the US premiere of Thomas Allen Harris’s THROUGH A LENS DARKLY: BLACK PHOTOGRAPHERS AND THE EMERGENCE OF A PEOPLE, beginning Wednesday, August 27. Inspired by Deborah Willis’s groundbreaking book, Reflections in Black (Willis is also a co-producer), the documentary casts a broad net that begins with filmmaker Thomas Allen Harris’s family album. It considers the difference between black photographers who use the camera to define themselves, their people, and their culture and some white photographers who, historically, have demeaned African-Americans through racist imagery. The film embraces both historical material (African-Americans who were slaves, who fought in the Civil War, were victims of lynchings, or were pivotal in the Civil Rights Movement) and contemporary images made by such luminaries as Roy DeCarava, Gordon Parks, and Carrie Mae Weems. THROUGH A LENS DARKLY is a cornucopia of Americana that reveals deeply disturbing truths about the history of race relations while expressing joyous, life-affirming sentiments about the ability of artists and amateurs alike to assert their identity through the photographic lens.
Directed by Thomas Allen Harris. Inspired by the book Reflections in Black: A History of Black Photographers 1840 to the Present by Deborah Willis. Produced by Thomas Allen Harris, Deborah Willis, Ann Bennett, and Don Perry. Executive producers: John Singleton and Kimberley Steward. Written by Thomas Allen Harris, Don Perry and Paul Carter Harrison. Cinematography: Martina Radwan. Editors: K.A. Miille and Matthew Cohn. Music: Vernon Reid and Miles Jay. USA. A First Run Features release.
THROUGH A LENS DARKLY will have a 2-week engagement August 27 September 9 at Film Forum, 209 W. Houston St., with screenings daily at 12:45, 2:50, 5:10, 7:20, 9:30.