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Thursday, November 6, 2008

Video: Local Teens Produce "A Choice of Weapons"

Posted By and on Thu, Nov 6, 2008 at 1:49 PM

Notes by Trey Bundy, Photos by Stephen Morrison

Video by Cecil B. Feeder and Trey Bundy

Twenty-four hours after Sean Penn and a gaggle of celebrities descended on the Castro for the premiere of Milk, another group of filmmakers took over the Brava Theater in the Mission to debut their own film about oppression and progress in San Francisco—A Choice of Weapons. Not only weren't the filmmakers famous, but most of them weren't even old enough to legally drink.

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“It was entirely youth-produced,” said Debra Koffler, founder and executive director of Conscious Youth Media Crew, a group that teaches inner-city kids how to write, direct, edit, and produce their own films. “What makes this film really unique is that it’s straight from the streets. The kids who wrote it are from the community, the kids who acted in it are from the community.”

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ACOW follows the story of D’Angelo, a wayward, direction-less teenager coming of age amidst the violence and toxic waste pollution in the Bayview/Hunters Point neighborhood of San Francisco.

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“When you make a film by youth, about youth, it’s going to reflect some interesting parallels to real life,” says 18-year-old Joe Talbot, the film’s composer.

“Just as D’Angelo’s character goes through a transformation, I think a lot of people in the process of making this movie actually went through similar transformations. And I think that’s the power of film. It can bring about some change in somebody.”

Catch A Choice of Weapons at the Roxie at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, November 10.

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