The Film Society of Minneapolis St. Paul, Walker Art Center, the Minnesota Historical Society and the Capri Theater present David Loeb Weiss’ No Vietnamese Ever Called Me N*****, a rarely seen documentary positioned at the critical intersection of the civil rights and anti-war movements. The film will be followed by a discussion led by John Wright, professor of African American & African Studies at the University of Minnesota. The screening begins at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 3 at the Capri Theater, 2027 West Broadway. Tickets to First Thursday Films are $5; purchase in advance at mspfilm.org or at the door the night of the show.
This newly restored documentary amplifies African American responses to the Vietnam War. No Vietnamese Ever Called Me N***** presents spontaneous street interviews conducted during the massive April 1967 march on the United Nations by the Spring Mobilization Committee to End the War. Just one week after Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s powerful “Beyond Vietnam” speech at Riverside Church, Harlem residents, marchers and GIs address the disproportionate losses of men of color and the injustices perpetrated by the U.S. overseas.
Interwoven with the protest footage is a group interview with three black veterans, recorded in May 1968, in which they describe their experiences of the war and the discrimination and racialized poverty to which they returned. Directed by Polish American labor organizer David Loeb Weiss, the film’s title references an iconic protest sign from the historic march.
Each First Thursday Films screening at the Capri is followed by a passionate discussion of the movie. For No Vietnamese Ever Called Me N***** we welcome Dr. John S. Wright. Born in Minneapolis, Wright received degrees in three different fields from the University of Minnesota. Before leaving the University in 1973 to develop a program in Afro-American & African Studies at Carleton College, he participated in the student movement that prompted the founding of its Martin Luther King Program and its Department of Afro-American & African Studies. He returned to the University of Minnesota to that department from 1984-89 and 1995-96. In 1994 the University of Minnesota Alumni Association made him an inaugural member of its teacher Hall of Fame.
More info: thecapritheater.org or mspfilm.org. Capri programs are generously supported by the Best Buy Foundation and Target. The film will also screen at Walker Cinema on Wednesday, May 9 at 7 p.m.: tickets $5 at walkerart.org.