Independent Lens: Season 15 (2013 - 2014)

SEASON:

Season 15
Independent Lens

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Episodes

Air date: Oct 28, 2013

Part 1 of 2. The Latino dropout crisis is examined through the eyes of six students from across the U.S., beginning with three young women. One left school after becoming pregnant, but has since enrolled in a Tulsa program for at-risk students; another has enjoyed better grades and become more active in school activities since joining the innovative Voices of Youth in Chicago Education program; and the third was helped by the staff at her South Bronx high school after her family became homeless.

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Air date: Nov 4, 2013

Conclusion. The Latino dropout crisis is seen through the eyes of three young men. One, whose parents moved from Mexico to San Diego so that he and his siblings could have a better education, fell into gang life before turning his life around, due in large part to the Reality Changers organization; another, the son of undocumented workers, overcame barriers in order to attend college; and the third may well have quit school except for the performing arts, which helped boost his confidence.

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Air date: Nov 18, 2013

"Indian Relay" chronicles a season of Indian relay-horse races, which are popular within Native American communities across the Rocky Mountain West. Teams from the Shoshone-Bannock, Crow and Blackfeet nations in Idaho and Montana are featured. The races feature riders leaping from horse to horse after the first two laps of a three-lap race around a track, with each team's handlers catching the dismounted horse or risk being disqualified.

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Air date: Nov 25, 2013

"Young Lakota" chronicles the political awakening of Sunny Clifford, her twin sister Serena and their neighbor Brandon Ferguson on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota when Cecilia Fire Thunder, the first female president of the Oglala Sioux Tribe, announces plans to open a Planned Parenthood clinic on the reservation after the South Dakota legislature passes a law outlawing all abortions. The move proves controversial, and ultimately leads the tribal council to impeach Fire Thunder.

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Air date: Dec 16, 2013

"Playwright: From Page to Stage" follows young playwrights Rajiv Joseph and Tarell Alvin McCraney from the initial development funding they receive for their plays until one of the productions makes it to Broadway with Robin Williams in a leading role.

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Air date: Dec 23, 2013

This profile of acclaimed sushi chef Jiro Ono delves into the octogenarian's life, including his difficult childhood and his early days in the restaurant business, and examines the techniques and philosophies he employs in putting together a dish.

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Air date: Dec 30, 2013

This documentary profiles an unlikely group of activists who helped identify and distribute promising treatments for HIV and AIDS in order to save those suffering from the disease.

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Air date: Jan 13, 2014

Frederick Wiseman's "At Berkeley" examines University of California at Berkeley, its intellectual and social mission, and day-to-day life on campus, including faculty meetings, classes and financial-aid seminars. The documentary also details the difficulties it faces due to reductions in public funding, which has fallen from 54 percent of the university's operating budget in 1987 to 12 percent in 2012.

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Air date: Jan 20, 2014

The story of graphic designer Rocky Braat, who was so moved by the plight of young AIDS patients in India that he moved to the country to care for HIV-positive orphans.

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Air date: Jan 27, 2014

A vérité look at the support for and opposition to Arizona Senate Bill 1070, known by some as the "show me your papers" law due to a provision requiring police officers to determine the immigration status of detainees, as the controversial state immigration law winds its way through the courts to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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