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Belcourt - Nashville's Nonprofit Cinema

Item is archived


PRICE*: $10 ($8 members) | VIEWING WINDOW: 3 days
WATCH ON: Computer, tablet, smartphone, Chromecast, AirPlay (or use a HDMI cable to connect your computer or tablet with your TV)
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Britain, late-1970s. Punk is exploding. The country is deeply divided over immigration. The National Front, a far-right fascist political party, is gaining strength as politicians like Enoch Powell push a xenophobic agenda. Outraged by a racist speech from Eric Clapton, music photographer Red Saunders writes a letter to the music press, calling for rock to be a force against racism. Magazines like NME, Melody Maker and Sounds all publish the letter, and Saunders is flooded with responses. Teaming up with like-minded creatives Roger Huddle, Kate Webb, Syd Shelton and Australian graphic designer Ruth Gregory, Saunders and other burgeoning activists establish Rock Against Racism (RAR) — and the fanzine Temporary Hoarding. Speaking directly to the youth, Temporary Hoarding reports stories and issues that the mainstream British media ignores, like immigration, the Catholic side of the Northern Ireland conflict, and the police’s controversial “suspected persons” (sus) powers. The National Front strikes back, committing acts of violence against RAR supporters and petrol-bombing their headquarters. Despite this, RAR spreads virally across the U.K. and Europe, becoming a grassroots youth movement — and recruiting musicians like The Clash, Steel Pulse, The Specials, Sham 69 and X-Ray Specs. WHITE RIOT recalls a moment in time when a generation of music lovers challenged the status quo – it’s Woodstock meets the March on Washington, punk-style.

“...Crackles with a raucous energy… Shah’s documentary will not only please those unfamiliar with the punk scene, but also those looking for stories of average people challenging the status quo." —Courtney Small, POV Magazine

"A thrilling, incendiary look at punk’s influence on politics." —Christopher Schobert, The Film Stage

“...One of this year’s most engaging rock docs.” —Linda Marric, NME

“...If there’s any one message to be taken from Shah’s film, it’s the belief that if a group of punks and reggae fans could unite to fight back against hatred in the 70s, anyone could do the same now.” —Stephanie Phillips, British Film Institute

The Belcourt Theatre does not provide advisories about subject matter or potential triggering content, as sensitivities vary from person to person.

Beyond the synopses, trailers and review links on our website, other sources of information about content and age-appropriateness for specific films can be found on Common Sense MediaIMDb and as well as through general internet searches.

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