Don’t be an American Sucker

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I’ve been on this kick lately where I’m thinking of my life and work in the context of past and present to better inform how I’ll deal with the future. It’s something we should all be doing all the time but I get a little carried away sometimes. As I dove down the rabbit hole, I remembered a video that I cut together out of old propaganda films from the 40s and 50s. Anyone that messes with archive material for experimental or documentary film knows the joy of seeing the material that informed the points of view of our grandparents.

Don’t be an American Sucker is a mashup of What it Means to be American from 1952 and Don’t be a Sucker from 1947. I made it as part of an experimental film class that I took at Columbia College Chicago during my second year of the MFA program. I reduced 5 scenes that spoke half-truths and spun white-lies about race, labor and education into a single cautionary tale that hints at my view of reality. The video is about five years old and it sat on a shelf for a year after I uploaded it to Vimeo. I hope it speaks to you…

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