SPOTLIGHT February, 2024: Ava DuVernay, Filmmaker, Activist and Architect of our Reflections

Ava emerges as a beacon of narrative innovation and cultural introspection. She’s not just making films; she’s setting new standards. Ava has a knack for seeing things that others miss and giving a voice to stories that are too often left untold. Her films do more than challenge our thinking; they shatter the status quo and remold the fragments into works of Kintsugi—showing off our shine but never denying our sharp edges. The Alliance of Women Film Journalists celebrates Ava DuVernay for her indelible contribution to the art of storytelling and her pursuit of stories and initiatives that don’t just entertain but enlighten, empower, and embrace us.

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MOVIE OF THE WEEK June 12, 2020: BLACK STORIES MATTER

BLACK LIVES MATTER! The Alliance of Women Film Journalists stands united with all who are demanding an end to the systemic racism that permeates American policy and culture. BLACK STORIES MATTER! To understand the depth of the injustice experienced by our nation’s Black communities and other people of color, we must listen to their stories and embrace their truths. BLACK MOVIES MATTER! Films presenting stories that reflect Black perspectives, culture and lifestyle are essential, entertaining and enlightening vehicles that drive home the need for change — at breakneck speed.

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13TH – Review by MaryAnn Johanson

Ava DuVernay’s incisive and shocking documentary 13th hit like a body blow when she first unveiled it in the autumn 2016 film festivals. Donald Trump had not yet been “elected” President of the United States, but already, the shock of him ascending to the status of Republican nominee was unsettling. Fast forward to *checks watch* now, and this is a brutal and necessary watch.

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SPOTLIGHT January 2020: Ava Duvernay, Filmmaker and Cinema Crusader

It’s hard to think of a more galvanizing, charismatic woman in film than Ava DuVernay. The 47-year-old producer, director, writer, distributor, and crusader for social justice has broken through boundaries and expanded professional and personal possibilities for women — especially women of color — working in film, and everywhere else. DuVernay has our greatest respect for her artistry, her dedication to freedom and equality for all people, and her innovative leadership by example.

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AWFJ Movie of the Week, January 13 – January 20, 2017: 13TH

Ava DuVernay’s documentary The 13th, using the 13th Amendment as a point of departure for a revealing investigation of mass incarceration in the US, is a history lesson, cinema essay and cogent, irrefutable indictment of economic and cultural policies that are the enduring legacy of slavery. The 13th was the first nonfiction film to open the New York Film Festival. It has garnered numerous awards and is shortlisted for an Academy Award. AWFJ’s Movie of the Week is The 13th, playing at select theaters and on Netflix. Read on…

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SPOTLIGHT January 2017: Ava DuVernay, Film Director and Crusader — by Marilyn Ferdinand

ava-duvernay-head-shotAva DuVernay prolifically creates award-winning narratives, documentaries and TV with small and large budgets. She generously supports the work of women directors and people of color through her film collective ARRAY. It’s hard to think of a more productive, galvanizing and charismatic woman in film than Ava DuVernay.

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