Let the Fire Burn
(Jason Osder, 2013)
Nonfiction filmmaking holds a strong appeal for many committed directors and producers. This ongoing series lets you sample wide-ranging approaches to the contemporary documentary.
“This masterpiece about an astounding and forgotten moment in recent American history should be seen far and wide.”—Filmmaker Magazine
In the astonishingly gripping Let the Fire Burn, director Jason Osder has crafted that rarest of cinematic objects: a found-footage film that unfurls with the tension of a great thriller. On May 13, 1985, a longtime feud between the city of Philadelphia and radical urban group MOVE came to a deadly climax. By order of local authorities, police dropped military-grade explosives onto a MOVE-occupied row house. TV cameras captured the conflagration that quickly escalated—and resulted in the tragic deaths of 11 people (including five children) and the destruction of 61 homes. It was only later discovered that authorities decided to “let the fire burn.” Using only archival news coverage and interviews, first-time filmmaker Osder has brought to life one of the most tumultuous and largely forgotten clashes between government and citizens in modern American history. (93 mins., DCP)
Screened in conjunction with Ohio State’s Conversations on Morality, Politics, and Society (COMPAS), this year focusing on the theme Public/Private. Visit compas.osu.edu for more information.
$6 members, students, seniors
$8 general public
SIGNIFICANT CONTRIBUTIONS FOR FILM/VIDEO
Rohauer Collection Foundation
GENERAL OPERATING SUPPORT FOR THE WEXNER CENTER
Greater Columbus Arts Council
Ohio Arts Council