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Indy Film Fest: Lines

by on May 2, 2021
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“Lines” takes just nine minutes and forty-five second to break your heart, inspire and most of all, give hope. This short film directed and animated by Claire Fleming showcased the talents of six incarcerated young writers and masterfully weaved their authentic words with animations that bring those words to life.

“Lines” features six poems: Jail Bird (Aundrey), Trapped (Alfredo Diaz), Why Do I Hate Love? (Tavon Stewart), I Got Up (D Crosland), Reflection (Terrell Jackson) and Knowledge (Myron James Gilmore). Each poem displays impressive power and features lines that will continue to challenge the viewer long after the film has ended.

The writers are part of the Free Minds Book Club, which, as they state on their website, “uses books, creative writing, and peer support to awaken incarcerated and formerly incarcerated youths and adults to their own potential.” It’s beautiful to see the arts being used to make a difference and not just in a superficial way.

In 2020, a year that caused so much uncertainty due to the global pandemic, the program served more than 900 members and saw an 87% placement rate for employment and education. Even more impressive was the rate of relapse back into crime was 11%, meaning that just by simply finding and having their voice heard, 89% of these young men and women were set free in more ways than one.

The film features narration from Letitia Wright, Michael Kenneth Williams, Jodie Turner-Smith, Adepero Oduye and Riz Ahmed.

“Lines” is a powerfully beautiful short film. Fleming does a remarkable job of presenting the words of these young writers, but the true stars of the film are the writers themselves. Their words are inspiring and hold so much power.

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