Freedom on My Mind
|Freedom on My Mind|
|Directed by||Connie Field
|Written by||Michael Chandler|
|Release date(s)||January, 1994 (premiere at Sundance)
22 June 1994 (USA)
|Running time||105 mins|
Freedom on My Mind is a 1994 documentary film about the efforts to register African-American voters in 1960s Mississippi and the formation of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party. It was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature. Participants interviewed include Robert Parris Moses, Victoria Gray Adams, Endesha Ida Mae Holland, and Freedom Summer volunteers Marshall Ganz, Heather Booth, and Pam Allen.
In 1961 Mississippi was a virtual South African enclave within the United States. Everything is segregated. There are virtually no black voters. Bob Moses, enters the state and the Voter Registration Project begins. The first black farmer who attempts to register is fatally shot by a Mississippi State Representative. But four years later, the registration is open. By 1990, Mississippi has more elected black officials than any other state in the union.
Freedom on My Mind vividly chronicles this complex and compelling history of the Mississippi voter registration struggles of 1961 to 1964: the interracial nature of the campaign, the tensions and conflicts, the fears and hopes. It is the story of youthful idealism and shared vision, of a generation who believed in and fought for the principles of democracy.
Freedom on My Mind dramatically interweaves powerful personal interviews, rare archival film and television footage, authentic Mississippi Delta blues, and vibrant Movement gospel songs. It emphasizes the strategic brilliance of Mississippi's young, black organizers. Barred from political participation, they create their own integrated party - the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party (MFDP). They recruit a thousand mostly white students from around the country to come to Mississippi, bringing the eyes and conscience of the nation with them. The students and the MFDP organizers put together a delegation of sharecroppers, maids, and day-laborers to challenge the all-white delegates in the 1964 Democratic National Convention. They demand equality and justice from the highest official in the land - the President confronting the country's leading politicians to live up to the democratic values they profess to hold.
Freedom on My Mind provides a sweeping panorama of a turbulent time: a time that tested America's purpose and its commitment to democracy. The legacy of that time, the achievements and failures, remain with us today. Freedom on My Mind will enable viewers of all backgrounds to better understand and appreciate this uniquely American legacy.
Awards and honors
- Sundance Film Festival: Grand Jury Prize for Best Documentary (1994)
- Academy Awards: Nominated as Best Feature Documentary (1994)
- Erik Barnouw Award (1995)
- "NY Times: Freedom on My Mind". NY Times. Retrieved 2008-11-20.
- "Freedom on My Mind". Sundance.org. Retrieved 27 August 2012.
- "Nominees & Winners for the 67th Academy Awards". Oscars.org. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Retrieved 27 August 2012.
- "Past Winners of the Erik Barnouw Award". Organization of American Historians. Retrieved 27 August 2012.
Children of Fate
|Sundance Grand Jury Prize: Documentary
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