Festival Program

Our 5th annual was a success! Check out the amazing films we had this year!

*All GIDC Screenings will take place in Mount Vernon on the Meeting Room Level of the hotel. 

*Each screening is approximately 90 minutes plus a 30 minute Q&A session.

FRIDAY : AUG 23 : 8PM : SCREENING 1 : Social Relations



A painful connection binds a real estate agent and her client.

Just a Drill


Determined to follow the rules in an active shooter drill, an overworked teacher in an underfunded classroom battles the impossible choices a leader must make when the drill becomes a horrifying reality.



A punk struggling to take care of herself in a gentrifying Venice beach has to begin worrying about a family when she suddenly becomes pregnant.

A Different Script


A 20-year-old actor from Fairfield, Connecticut steps on the pathway to his dream of succeeding in Hollywood while struggling for personal independence with Down syndrome.

It Happened One Night

In 2022 after Roe v. Wade is overturned, a woman struggles to find the care that she needs after bei

In 2022 after Roe v. Wade is overturned, a woman struggles to find the care that she needs after being sexually assaulted.

Family of Too Many


An 8-year-old Shiite Iranian girl in the 1980s, believes she has caused the death of her grandmother. As she deals with her feelings of guilt, her parents decide to steal grandmother's body to perform prohibited religious rights.




Julia Thompson, adopted at birth from Spain during the Franco era by an American father and German mother, quests to find her biological parents. 

The Healing of Harman


A Kurdish refugee working in the heartland of America (Lincoln, Nebraska) as an interpreter, meets a mysterious man that asks for help with life and death consequences.

Elephant Bird


An old man traveling across the mountains to Kabul to give one last gift to his grandchild is blocked by insurgents and leaves the main road for a less secure path. 

My Land


A Salvadoran father of two barricades his family inside their home in order to to avoid deportation by the newly created "Immigration Deportation Force", but not everyone agrees with his decision.

This Being Human


A portrait of a young Iraqi who left everything behind at 15, in a solo quest for a more peaceable future.

SATURDAY : AUG 24 : 11AM : SCREENING 3 : Diplomatic Affairs

The Battle for Ranked Choice Voting


Facing increasingly divisive politics, citizens across America are coming together to change the way we vote. Maine leads the way, fighting entrenched interests to enact a reform that reduces negative campaigning, eliminates the "spoiler effect" and opens races to minority & third-party candidates.

Here's Your Flag


An Army officer arrives at a mother's  door to inform her that a new algorithm predicts that her son who enlisted yesterday will die in battle. 

Stories of Conflict


Survivors of the Colombian civil war tell their stories of tragedy, survival, and hope, while trying to find peace and reparation. 

The Elephant Song


The true and tragic tale of Old Bet, the first circus elephant in America, as recounted in song by her friend the old farm dog through handcrafted animation.

Tank Man


An examination into the mind of the iconic gentleman who stood in front of and stopped a line of tanks after the Tienanmen Square massacre of June 4, 1989.

Saved - Escape from Kim's Regime


An escape plan between mother and son from North Korea goes desperately wrong when they get stuck in the frozen Chinese hillsides near the border. Venturing into China, they seek refuge with a secret network called the Underground Railroad. 

SATURDAY : AUG 24 : 11AM : Screening 4 : Mixed Topics

Pizza, Democracy & the Little Prince


International students agree to be interviewed by Syrian children who are currently seeking refuge in Istanbul.

Black Magic


This is a repetition story, like all stories with a City of Nowhere, the city of blinds and a lonely hero.

You Went On With Your Dying


A mother's death sparks questions of mortality and memory.



Five perspectives from an activist, a psychologist, a doctor, a professor, and a girl combine in an attempt to better understand the rise of female genital cosmetic surgery, addressing the hypocrisies of first world values, and the undeniable role that capitalism plays.



Located in a refugee camp in southern Lebanon, a group of kids are confronted with a camera man - a western eye on their story of war and crisis. They flip the script and take over the situation, deciding to ask the questions.

SATURDAY : AUG 24 : 2PM : Screening 5 : Wellness

The Sun House - Beit Ashams


In Beit Jala, a town next to Bethlehem, two Christian Palestinian women celebrate International Yoga Day with local students in their community.

Hoan Alone: Personal Stories from the Bridge


Milwaukee's Daniel Hoan Memorial Bridge is the crown over Summerfest and has become one of the city's most recognizable landmarks. But it's also a popular site for suicides.

Lost and Found II: The Disappearing Pain


This film attempts to show how for some children, the impact of trauma robs them son parts of themselves by having the main character slowly fade with each traumatic experience until finally, he is barely noticeable.  As with the first film though, disappearing though at first may keep someone safe from trauma, it can also work against you as it makes it harder to connect and feel safe in the world.  



A sheltered young woman diagnosed with schizophrenia jumps at the chance of a new job in Los Angeles without anti-psychotics medications. Her life turns upside down when she meets a mysterious and vibrate stranger.

The Talk

Rural families in Guatemala often have 3 or more children, and most live on less than 2 USD per day.

An exploration of the impact that unplanned pregnancies have on local communities around Lake Atitlán, Guatemala, and one nonprofit's attempt to address this issue.



A young woman confronts her aggressor and hits back where it would hurt the most!

Just One Night


Two best friends at a crossroads in life, put aside their religious convictions to go to a bar for the first time. In this night, secrets  surface and their relationship is put to the test.



In the wake of the #MeToo movement, a survivor at James Madison University becomes a powerful advocate on campus after her own assault case gets handled in all the wrong ways.

SATURDAY : AUG 24 : 4PM : Screening 6 : Sustainability



Through the eyes of NYC fashion designers looking at sustainable fashion, the question forms "at what cost are we buying our clothes?"

Made in China: Reforming China's Supply Chain


Chinese environmentalist Ma Jun emerges as a bold and singular voice, willing to stand up to powerful political and economic interests.

Coffee Hunter Project


Dictatorship, deforestation, and natural disasters in Haiti causes the country to go from the leading global producer of coffee to now less than 1%. Coffee Hunter Joey Stazzone paints the big picture for us as he travels through the coffee fields of Hispaniola.

I Can. I Do.


Fighting the global water crisis is more than bringing clean water to those in need. When clean water flows, that is just the beginning. 

It's Good Business: Moving Beyond Conservation


In 1990's Mexico, many believed rampant deforestation was simply the cost of doing business. But one man saw an alternative, and launched what would become the most successful biodiversity program in history: CONABIO. 

Where Life Begins


Along the Arctic Coast, at the northernmost point on American soil, an inseparable bond between mother and child shows the importance of protecting a place where life begins.

SATURDAY : AUG 24 : 10PM : Screening 7 : Equality

Creating Second Chances


At 20 years old, John Valverde committed a crime that landed him in prison. While incarcerated, he rebuilt his life by accepting responsibility and by using education as a catalyst to help himself and to help other inmates. Upon his release 16 years later, he dedicated his life to serving others, ultimately becoming the first formally incarcerated CEO of a non-profit with a global mission - YouthBuild.



Multi-talented transgender student navigates life at the historically Catholic and conservative University of Notre Dame.

Hiding in Daylight


After a gay purge, four best friends are surviving by living in fake marriages to each other. They secretly meet once a week to see their true spouse and play a "game" where they reminisce about their former openly gay lives. After 3 years of weekly gatherings, they must determine if their clandestine meetings are worth risking their lives. In one night, emotions run high, friendships begin to unravel and everything changes in an instant.

Second Acts


When a white woman and African American man, both in their 70's, meet by chance one night, they feel an instant romantic connection. As they get acquainted, they're shocked to realize they'd been childhood friends long ago, but the racism of a previous era had kept them apart.



A customer limps into a restaurant in pain and declines help from the immigrant doctor who runs the restaurant.

Women Are Gold


Penh Lenh is a jewelry store in Phnom Penh, Cambodia that provides vocational training, education, and job opportunities to women so that they can reach their full potential in a society that holds men in higher esteem than women.

The Little Tenants


An association battles to give access to education to disadvantaged children eager to learn and as joyful and turbulent as other kids.

SUNDAY : AUG 25 : 11AM : SCreening 8 : Environmental Issues

The Sacred Place Where Life Begins


When two adventurers embark on a dangerous four-month expedition documenting the world's longest land mammal migration through the Arctic Refuge of Alaska and Canada, they soon discover an incredible ecosystem protected by the Gwichin Nation for more than 25,000 years, yet held on the precipice of collapse by resource development corporations.

Standing Rock Take Me From The River


Activists from Milkwaukee travel over 800 miles to Standing Rock's Oceti Sakowin camp to protect clean water rights against powerful oil interests. 

From the Ground Up


What's next for the farm to table movement in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria?

Divided We Dance


In the heart of Zululand, South Africa, a lush and hilly terrain dotted with traditional homesteads and giant aloes, the community of Somkhele is taking Tendele Coal Mine to court for abandoning its promises of development and wanting to move on.

No Distance Between Us


Told through the candid voices of the Traditional Custodians of the Willandra Lakes Region, the Mutthi Mutthi, Barkandji and Ngiyampaa people, an ancient and continued connection to country experienced by Australia's First Nation people and their struggle for recognition of traditional Indigenous knowledge is revealed.

SUNDAY : AUG 25 : 1PM : SCreening 9 : Health

Lost Thekra


An Alzheimer's patient is at a doctor's appointment, the doctor asks the patient how much he remembers to analyze his mental state.

One Twice a Day


During a routine health check a doctor discovers that there's something terribly wrong with his patient.

The Hope Dealer


A heroin addict must choose between his family and his addiction in this raw and powerful film that encourages those struggling with opioid abuse to seek help, choose hope, and continue with recovery efforts.



A father loves his home but struggles with wanting to change his deteriorating community and the dangerous drug culture it houses and the desire to leave it behind.

Still Here


A 17-year-old whose parents have succumbed to a painkillers addiction after the closing of the local paper mill  must decide whether to give in to the urge to escape or to remain and fight for a better future.



Lack of access to food with nutritional value, is an endemic problem across our country. In Baltimore City, many neighborhoods offer little in the way of choice for residents but people try to reclaim their right to nutritious food. 



A nonverbal autistic 17-year-old struggles in school and at home. With an overprotective mother and barely-there father, he must fight to find his voice, stay in school, and keep his family from falling apart.

SUNDAY : AUG 25 : 4PM : SCreening 10 : Community affairs

Boys in the Boat


A crew of young rowers with intellectual disabilities, thrive on the companionship and routine that come with being part of a team. While some train hard to compete at a prestigious regatta, others face seemingly insurmountable obstacles as they navigate toward adulthood.



Trinidad and Tobago is home to over 7,000 asylum-seekers and refugees. A Venezuelan refugee family  journeys through Port-of-Spain and encounter a group of Moko Jumbies (stilt-walkers).

John Mendez - The Bridge


John Mendez fights on the frontlines against homelessness in Montgomery County, MD, just outside of Washington, D.C. Often times battling extreme cold in the middle of the night, John works tirelessly to find affordable housing for each individual living on the streets.



Recently homeless and living in a car with her mother, a teenage girl commits a reckless act, desperate to rescue a vestige of their former life.



For months Kira has been living out of her car in Venice, California. Facing a constant struggle to keep her head above water, Kira's world collapses when she returns home from work one evening to find her car stolen. Vulnerable and alone, Kira must navigate the harrowing uncertainty of a night on the streets. 

Are You Volleyball?!


A group of Arabian spoken asylum seekers arrive to an English spoken country border and can't keep going. They conflict with border soldiers everyday till a deaf-mute baby becomes a catalyst for better communication between two groups.