Part I of “The Streets and the Classrooms: Educational and Industrial Films in an Era of Massive Social Change,” created by South Side Projections.
Presented by Judy Hoffman (University of Chicago, Kartemquin Films member) and Gordon Quinn (Kartemquin Films Co-Founder)
Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts
University of Chicago
915 E. 60th Street
Chicago’s Kartemquin Films is known for its socially engaged documentaries, but funds haven’t always been plentiful. So, like many Chicago-based documentary filmmakers, they did work for hire to raise money for their projects and pay their rent. But it wasn’t just about getting paid: they used this work as an opportunity to hone their craft and learn about different worlds of work, from fast food to organ transplants to automotive plants. This in turn opened the filmmakers up to thinking about their own relationship to the film industry. In films like Strange and Beautiful (about quality control at McDonald’s) and Roadmap for Change: The Deming Approach (about a radical experiment at a Pontiac factory), the filmmakers behind such classic documentaries as The Last Pullman Car and Hoop Dreams figured out how to survive and perfect their craft. Most of these films have never screened publicly.
1976-1990, 81 min., 16mm and video projection