Chattanooga FIlm Festival: 54 Miles to Home

54 Miles to Home stealth snuck up between genre films and arty shorts to teach me about three black farming families who risked their lives in 1965 when they opened up their land to thousands of voting rights protesters during the Selma to Montgomery March.

Six decades later, the Halls, Steeles and Gardners explain exactly how much their parents and grandparents risked, as well as share stories of the rural and agricultural roots of the civil rights movement.

Protesting has been on everyone’s mind as of late, but these days, the dissent seems online and impersonal. These were people fighting for their ways of life, working as one to overcome.

This was directed by Claire Haughe, who says that she is pursuing “stories that address the intersection of environmental justice, income equality, and community.” Documentaries like this are why I love watching movies, as I learned so much about part of my country’s history that I never knew about. I urge you to do the same.

To support the preservation of these historic homes, visit the Alabama Rivers Alliance.

The Chattanooga Film Fest ends tomorrow at 11:59 PM EDT. To get a Last Gasp Pass for just $32, visit the official site now.

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