The Island House Film Festival celebrates “Play the Devil” and “Viva”
- Jan 10, 2017 - 9:46:50 AM
In January, The Island House will be hosting two amazing parties
celebrating two fascinating films that have strong connections to The
Bahamas during The Island House Film Festival taking place in Nassau
January 12–15, 2017.
On Thursday, January 12th, the first party
takes place in the form of a ‘Mas’ Soca fete celebrating the premiere of
Bahamian director Maria Govan’s second feature film ‘Play the Devil’,
which has already won several awards around the world. Director Govan
will be joining Island House for the festival...
Kareem Mortimer: An interview with Bahamian filmmaker Maria Govan
- Aug 14, 2015 - 2:03:15 PM
I first met Maria
Govan 13 years ago and since that time we
have worked together on many projects as collaborators and have enjoyed a
friendship. As our 'Caribbean Storytellers' series at The Island House
is almost nearing its end for 2015, it would be incomplete without
Maria’s debut film,
I recently chatted with her and asked a
few questions about her film and career.
Can you tell us a little bit
about your history? How did you get involve in filmmaking?
Nassau Over The Hill - Documentary and Spy
- Aug 7, 2015 - 1:54:21 PM
We are nearing the end of this season’s Caribbean Storyteller
Series at The Island House Cinema. This week at the cinema we are
Rosemary Hanna’s timely and important documentary Nassau Over The Hill.
This documentary is the story of the fashioning of a people
whose ancestors were transplanted to a foreign land under the most
dehumanizing conditions and have in a
relatively short period changed the history of a former plantation
had the opportunity to ask Rosemary a few questions about her process.
Can you tell us a bit about your background and how you became a
filmmaker? How What is the name of your film? Can you tell us a bit about your
background and how you became a filmmaker? How are you connected to this story
and how long did it take you to make?
Caribbean Storytellers - Migration
- Jul 17, 2015 - 1:36:31 PM
Last week at The Island House Cinema we showed a group of short films by
Bahamian filmmakers that deal specifically with migration issues as a
part of our Caribbean Storyteller Series. The films included Passage
which is directed by myself,
by Gustavius Smith,
by Tyler Johnston and
by Brian Lee.
I was able to sit with these filmmakers and ask them a few questions about their process...
Bahamian vloggers recognized at The Island House
- Jul 3, 2015 - 1:42:13 PM
My favourite program at the Island House Cinema is the
Caribbean Storyteller Series
in this series we feature current work Caribbean filmmakers and
Last week at The Island House Cinema we featured three of
the most prominent vloggers in the country. We engaged Sawyerboy, TAP
and Miss B in a conversation about their work that was participatory
with the audience. We will be showing this work again before the close
of the series...
Kareem Mortimer: Children of God and Starred Up
- Jun 12, 2015 - 12:17:37 PM
The photo seen here is of Scottish director Ian Mackenzie and myself at
the 2007 Bahamas International Film Festival. I was at the festival
representing my short film
and David was in attendance with his brilliant third feature
starring a young Jamie Bell.
weekend at The Island House we are celebrating the third anniversary of
the theatrical release of the Bahamian feature film
Children of God
and showing the new critically acclaimed film from David,
Kareem Mortimer: Where Art Belongs
- Jun 5, 2015 - 9:20:14 AM
This past week, I had the privilege of
being invited to attend and present at the Black Portraitures
Conference: Imagining Black Bodies and Reframing Histories in Florence,
Italy organized by New York University and Harvard. The panel I
presented on was “The Retreating Island” moderated by Edward Akintola
Hubbard along with Barbadian filmmakers Russell Watson and Lisa
At this conference, there was also a presentation by
another Bahamian Erica James, a professor at Yale who presented a paper
on the 19th Century Haitian portraits of Louis Rigaud. One theme that
was consistent through many of the presentations was ownership of
Kareem Mortimer: Who are we anyway?
- May 31, 2015 - 1:11:28 PM
“Who am I?” I thought about it for a while and then
knew the answer was that I am a Being that is having an experience of life on
this planet with the power of choosing how to define myself. I could not be labeled and I could not
be boxed in, although people will choose to put me in a box in their minds, I
will not put myself in a box...
I am currently
listening to an audio book by Wayne Dyer and in the recording he asks the
listener to ask him or herself a simple question. The question we had to ask
ourselves was “Who am I?”
Immediately ideas flooded into my brain about nationality, gender, and
race; but before I could have answered, I was stopped and then asked to answer
the question from the perspective that no one had ever told me who I was. “Who
are you?” he asked “And do not
give me a textbook definition, give me a definition from your soul“
Kareem Mortimer: The Fearless and The Fear
- May 22, 2015 - 7:44:13 AM
My column this week comes a little late due to my responsibilities with the Island
House Cinema and Best Ever Film. I had the privilege to work on a free
To Sir With Love in the Grants town community for the inaugural
Cinema in The Park event for almost 200 children. Fusion IMC, Tyrina Neely
coordinated the details of the event, The owners of Central Food Fair donated
the vacant lot and The Island House Cinema donated the open air screen.
Community leader Valentino Brown
(Scrooge) introduced the evening and Pamela Poitier (daughter of Sir Sidney
Poitier) introduced the film. The idea of the free screening comes under the
umbrella of a charity called The Children’s Haven whose principal is a Bahamian resident Mr. Beat
Schlagenhauf. I consider Beat a personal friend and business associate and a
fearless person who has taught me many lessons in business and the
responsibility we all have in giving back to our community...
Kareem Mortimer: Wild Tales!
- May 8, 2015 - 5:57:11 PM
As storytellers, I think we are all obsessed with the absurdity of life. As Bahamians we are also obsessed with it; it is in our facebook posts “Chile, you wouldn’t believe…” and in our homes “ Guess what happened to me tonight dread...” Absurdity saves us from boredom. If there ever was a day where nothing extraordinary happened there would be nothing for us to talk about. This week at The Island House Cinema we have two films but, there is one film in particular that takes absurdity to a brand new level- one of my favorite films of the year—the Academy Award nominated Wild Tales.
The Cannes Film
Festival website it describes Wild Tales as "Vulnerable before a reality that can suddenly be
modified and become unpredictable, the characters of Wild Tales cross the thin
line that divides civilization from brutality. A story about love deception,
the return of the past, a tragedy, or even the violence contained in an
Kareem Mortimer: Perfectly Imperfect
- May 1, 2015 - 2:15:39 PM
Perfection is the most uninteresting thing to me as an
artist. I am more interested in the process of getting to perfection. The journey is
the most important part of the process, the bumps, the false starts and
perceived disappointments. The journey is probably the most imperfect moment,
but it is the one that contains the most beauty, as it is where growth happens.
So to me, maybe in a way
imperfection is perfection.
I am in the process of closing the financing on my feature
Cargo. Cargo started in earnest in 2011 after Wind Jammers and Children of God
were released commercially within a month of each other. An investor that was keen to fully invest in a project that
involved the topic of human smuggling approached me.
Kareem Mortimer: How Low Can You Go?
- Apr 24, 2015 - 11:05:08 AM
Film is art and art is life. Film
communicates common experiences that help us understand our world and
gives us the space to thrust our impressions on it so that we can better
understand ourselves. This week film has brought up this question for
me—How far are we are willing to go in order for strangers to tell us
that we are good enough? How far are we willing to go to get the
momentary adulation of our peers? I approach filmmaking as a form of
self-expression, however as filmmakers we often feel the burden of
marketing our work and ourselves a great deal to get some attention to
it because unfortunately that is how the world measures success.
few years ago I was invited to an event to promote a film that I had
made, I was young, new to the industry and still a very insecure
Kareem Mortimer: Two Films - Two Places - One World
- Apr 18, 2015 - 4:00:09 PM
This awareness has led me to making short films,
features, documentaries, art films, boards and most recently curator of film programming
at the Island House Cinema, a boutique 48 seat theater in Western New Providence
dedicated to showcasing the best in independent, foreign, art, Caribbean and
up on a small island, film has enabled me to know that my surroundings were
unique, people from around the world were similar, change is absolutely
necessary and greater was possible.
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