THE ISSUE OF MR. O'DELL
Directed by Rami Katz
2018, 35 minutes
Purchase: $310 | Classroom rental $125
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The Issue of Mr. O’Dell examines the lifelong work of a pioneering civil rights organizer Jack ODell, who was a close colleague and advisor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the years before the March on Washington. But after President John F. Kennedy named him the number five Communist in America, ODell was eventually forced out of King’s organization.
In soft-spoken interviews, ODell discusses systemic racism, past and present, and dissects America's troubled history with racial discrimination. The wisdom of the 94-year-old activist speaks to the present as his experiences fighting alongside Dr. King resonate strongly with the Black Lives Matter movement. Shot in sobering black and white, The Issue of Mr. ODell illustrates how change begins at the personal level and takes an arduous path to reach the collective consciousness. Jack ODell passed away in 2019 at the age of ninety-six, after this film was completed.
Subjects & Collections
Festivals & AwardsWINNER - President's Award - Full Frame 2018
Official Selection - Roxbury International Film Festival 2018
Official Selection - DOXA Documentary Film Festival 2018
Official Selection - Freep Film Festival 2018
Official Selection - Flickers' Rhode Island International Film Festival 2018
Further ReadingWho is Jack O'Dell? - The Nation
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