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CFI Education

Monday, May 20, 2013 from 12:30 PM to 2:00 PM (PDT)


Ticket Information

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Event Details

Join us for a free matinee screening
and post-film discussion


With discussion and Q&A led by directors, Maren Grainger-Monsen and
Nicole Newnham

Monday, May 20, 12:30 pm
Christopher B. Smith Rafael Film Center
1118 Fourth Street, San Rafael, CA 94901
www.cafilm.org, (415) 454-1222


Amlan Ganguly,  a lawyer-turned social entrepreneur, has sewn hope in the poorest neighborhoods of Calcutta by empowering children  to become leaders, Revolutionary Optimistactivists and educators, in improving the health of their communities, with powerful results. THE REVOLUTIONARY OPTIMISTS follows him as he attempts to replicate his work in the brick fields outside the city, where children live and work in unimaginable conditions.

Using street theater, puppetry, and dance as their weapons, the children in Calcutta's slums have cut their neighborhoods' malaria and diarrhea rates in half, and turned former garbage dumps into playing fields. Now, pushing at the limits of optimism, Amlan is attempting to take his work into the brickfields outside Calcutta, where spend their days making and carrying bricks using methods unchanged by centuries.

THE REVOLUTIONARY OPTIMISTS proposes a workable solution to intractable problems associated with poverty, including preventable diseases and ineffectual governance. Ganguly's story suggests that education and child empowerment are crucial keys to lifting entire societies out of hopelessness.

About the Producers/Directors
Nicole Newnham co-directed the critically acclaimed documentary The Rape of Europa, about the fate of Europe's art treasures during WWII which was recently nominated for two Emmy awards. Nicole was also nominated for an Emmy Award for her documentary Sentenced Home, following three Cambodian refugees in Seattle who are deported back to Cambodia after 9/11. She field-produced the Emmy-nominated documentary Skin for PBS and National Geographic, and co-produced They Drew Fire, a widely-acclaimed special for PBS about the combat artists of World War II. Nicole received a Master's degree in Documentary Film from Stanford University.

Maren Grainger-Monsen is a physician and filmmaker-in-residence at Stanford University Center for Biomedical Ethics. She directed Worlds Apart and Hold Your Breath, a large-scale project on cross-cultural conflicts in medicine currently used in 63 percent of U.S. medical schools.  She studied film at the London International Film School and received her medical training at the University of Washington and Stanford University.

Presented in partnership with

Community Cinema logo

Co-presented by:

Hesperian Health Guides


Hesperian strives for a world in which people and communities are equipped to achieve health for all. Our mission is to provide information and educational tools that help all people take greater control over their health and work to eliminate the underlying causes of poor health. www.hesperian.org

Made possible through the generous support of

Bank of Marin logoNordstrom logo Free ticket reservations to this screening available
ONLY through this EVENTBRITE invitation



If after reserving tickets you find that you or your group cannot attend, please cancel your reservation.
All screenings are at the Christopher B. Smith Rafael Film Center, 1118 Fourth St. San Rafael.

CFI Education is proud to be a part of Community Cinema. Community Cinema is a ground-breaking public education and civic engagement initiative featuring monthly screenings of films from the
Emmy Award-winning PBS series Independent Lens. For more information about Community Cinema and for study guides visit www.pbs.org/independentlens/communitycinema


For information about CFI Education visit www.cafilm.org/education

or blog with us at http://cafilm.wordpress.com


Have questions about THE REVOLUTIONARY OPTIMISTS? Contact CFI Education

When & Where

Christopher B. Smith Rafael Film Center
1118 Fourth Street
San Rafael, CA 94901

Monday, May 20, 2013 from 12:30 PM to 2:00 PM (PDT)

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CFI Education

CFI Education provides students of all ages and of diverse backgrounds the opportunity to learn about themselves and the world through film.


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