Striking L.A. Rebellion Short Film Of Note - 'Daydream Therapy' (Chicago Screening w/ Gerima's 'Bush Mama')
Photo Credit: S & A

Striking L.A. Rebellion Short Film Of Note - 'Daydream Therapy' (Chicago Screening w/ Gerima's 'Bush Mama')


Though it’s the major feature films that naturally get

the most attention, the L.A. Rebellion

film series, which has been touring across the county (and currently in Chicago until early June), also features many shorts films made by black UCLA film students during the L.A.

Rebellion phase, which are either being

shown with features or in a collection of short film programs.

However, one of the most striking and defiantly political

is Bernard Nicolas’ 1977 short film, Daydream Therapy, made as one of his

first student projects at UCLA.

In a concise nine minutes, Therapy tells the story of a

put-upon black female office custodian, who also works as a house maid for her

piggish boss, who also crudely sexuality harasses her in his home. The only means

of escape are her daydreams, which eventually lead to her political self-realization.

It’s a film that reflects the revolutionary activist fervor

of the time, with an uncompromising power and directness.

The film is even more striking with Nicolas’ use of  Nina

Simone’s dramatic and powerful rendition of Kurt Weill’s song, Pirate Jenny, from his 1928 musical Die

Dreigroschenoper (The Threepenny Opera) which is about a maid who imagines exacting

revenge on the cruel people in the town she lives.

And Daydream Therapy is appropriately attached to Haile Gerima’s film Bush Mama, his feature film about a

black woman’s political awakening, and both films will be screened this Thursday

at the L.A. Rebellion Film Series, Chicago screenings, which you can read about


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