MvVO Art Launches AD ART SHOW

Ava DuVernay’s Documentary Opens New York Film Festival with Powerful Vision

Ava DuVernay’s Documentary Opens New York Film Festival with Powerful Vision

Director Ava DuVernay has created a level of spectacular again, and this time at the beloved New York Film Festival. 13TH is the first documentary ever to be selected as the opening-night film of The New York Film Festival for good reason.

img_1766The film evaluates the current state of mass incarceration, and what in American history has lead to modern day enslavement. It is not a film just about what created the movement Black Lives Matter, but rather a look at the background that established a problem in our country that cannot be denied. Yes, the escalated police shootings and angry protests are daily news, but where did this hatred and pain all originate is the question.

The director begins by a startling observation by President Obama that our country contains just 5% of the world’s population and 25% of its prisoners. And, these inmates are only cycling back into a vicious circle of distrust and hard issues that are tough to tackle, but are a must in our world. She takes her message to heart and has done her homework to back-up her thesis statement in this powerful film. She is stating that even though we were supposed to have been done with legal slavery it actually never went away, and now it exists in a mutated different form with the prison system in the states.

The film tells a history lesson that starts off with the chapter going back to the end of the Civil War, and to the passage of the 13th Amendment itself, which abolished slavery and involuntary servitude, “except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted.” In essence, the director’s evaluation is that once the battle was over, former slaves could be arrested on trivial charges like vagrancy and loitering and turned into prisoners and psychological slaves again. Comparing to “The Birth of a Nation” by Griffith, working with actors in blackface, took the image of the “black criminal” and turned it into a demon still witnessed in this century. Racial tyranny sticks around in to the Civil Rights era until now when there is a war against the system on a daily basis – from the War on Drugs to the rage of Black Lives Matter.

What DuVernay is offering as a filmmaker is a potent timetable full of facts and enough dramatic tones mixed in to be a powerful teacher. There is no easy solution of course, but there is a message of we have to find a way with our upcoming political movement to break the system before it gets worse.

The film is well-balanced and editing is phenomenal with stunning graphics and music mixed in. Historical footage is raw in emotion and obviously from a place of passionate filmmaking. This is a film to see at the festival and beyond.

Running time: 100 MIN


A Netflix release. Producers: Ava DuVernay, Howard Barish. Executive producers: Lisa Nichimura, Ben Cotner, Adam Del Deo, Angus Wall, Jason Sterman.


Director: Ava DuVernay. Screenplay: DuVernay, Spencer Averick. Camera (color, widescreen): Hans Charles, Kira Kelly. Editor: Spencer Averick.


Melina Abdullah, Michelle Alexander, Cory Booker, Dolores Canales, Gina Clayton, Jelani Cobb, Malkia Cyril, Angela Davis, Craig DeRoche, David Dinkins, Baz Dreisinger, Kevin Gannon, Henry Louis Gates Jr., Newt Gingrich, Lisa Graves, Van Jones.



ElizaBeth Taylor is a journalist for Times Square Chronicles and is a frequent guest at film, fashion and art events throughout New York City and Los Angeles due to her stature as The Sensible Socialite.Passionate about people ElizaBeth spent many years working as a travel reporter and television producer after graduating with high honors from University of Southern California. The work has afforded her the opportunity to explore Europe, Russia, South America, Asia, Australia and the Middle East. It has greatly influenced the way in which ElizaBeth sees a story and has created a heightened awareness for the way people around the world live today.

More in Events

What to Watch in The New Year: Jan 21

Suzanna BowlingJanuary 20, 2021

NYWINF Present Panel Discussing Identifying Features

Suzanna BowlingJanuary 20, 2021
Joe Iconis

What to Watch in The New Year: Jan 20

Suzanna BowlingJanuary 19, 2021

Broadway is Represented at The Critics’ Choice Television Awards by Hamilton, What the Constitution Means to Me, Ashley Park, Daveed Diggs, Christine Baranski, Andrew Rannells and More

Suzanna BowlingJanuary 19, 2021

The Glorious Corner

G. H. HARDINGJanuary 19, 2021

What to Watch in The New Year: Jan 19

Suzanna BowlingJanuary 18, 2021

Registration Is Now Open For The 2021 Love In Times Square Events!

Suzanna BowlingJanuary 18, 2021

Working With Your Wedding Videographer – What All Should You Know?

WriterJanuary 18, 2021

Ask Bob Blume – Column #41- Talent Competition Events with Allison Gilbert of The Industry Network

Bob BlumeJanuary 18, 2021