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This project was successfully funded on May 12, 2016


by Rebecka Jackson-Moeser


The History:

Up.Rise. is a documentary exploration of the Baltimore Uprisings and the future of black youth.

On April 15th our team will return to Baltimore to complete our documentary. We are fundraising to cover the cost of production and editing.

Up.Rise. is not a singular film, but rather a series of questions, a living oral history, a homage to those lost at sea, a hope for those yet born and a testament to the unending beauty of revolutionary blackness in the face of genocide.

April 19th marks the anniversary of Freddie Gray's murder. Almost a year ago he was loaded into the back of a van, as though her were already dead. His neck was snapped. How many times will we yell “I can’t breathe” while watching our death stalk us in a police uniform? This is the story of Baltimore, and every other life of color lost in the struggle.

Here is a link to the trailer.

The Film:

Our Budget is modest. We are activist/filmmakers that generally tend to work with little to no funding so we are confident in producing a high quality film for fractions of what a tradition production company could. We have covered our first 2 months of shooting through a small grant and also have possible grant and foundation support for post production cost. We work with national activist organizations and directly with families and victims who have experienced police violence.

Just as the Uprisings are unbound by rules of tradition or politics, our filming process is unfamiliar. Much of our research is recording and presenting the oral histories of Baltimore as told by its elders and investigations of Baltimore’s communities on a day to day basis. Freddie Gray was one of many in a long line of lives snatched, only his neighborhood knows his truth. By finding the life and history of Freddie Grey and his community we seek to discover the voices of revolution as well as find the graves of those defeated.

We are using alternative documentation techniques that insert the filmmaker into the narrative and story. Our voices are weaved throughout the process; instead of masking ourselves in journalistic neutrality I am interested in exposing our vulnerabilities through the filming process. I want to expose our place in the timeline of Baltimore’s evolution and revolution. We are not protected behind the camera, we are injected into the story.

In addition, we will be conducting workshops and live performance events based around community healing and arts therapy. These processes will be a part the final film project as well. The lines between fiction and documentation will become purposefully softer in these exercises. We are trying to find the breaking point when emotional reality becomes truth. Right and wrong exist in that point, it is the spark for rebellion against oppression.

Up.Rise. is an open critique of the government corruption that has created the police state of today. It is a visual history lesson as told by the human crops sprung of capitalist expansion. Freddie’s murder must be properly framed in the narrative that shaped it. A city built on the prison-industrial complex, a police force of reputed murderers and communities bled by predatory lending. Baltimore was at the breaking point in a perfect storm of oppression and injustice. This uprising is undeniable - the entire world is watching as America attempts to cannibalize its young yet again for the sake of profit.

We end, as always, in a call to action. Do not let the Uprising die in the streets, do not let it end in Baltimore, or Ferguson, or Chicago or LA. This is a movement, not a moment.

Pre Production:

Opening sequence and initial budget goals met.

Production Dates, Baltimore:

April 15th-September 20th.Full time shooting and editing in Baltimore city.

Match Funds are not currently available.

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