Durango Community Cinema will begin a third season Wednesday with a screening of “The Graduates (Los Graduados)” at the Durango Discovery Museum. It is the second year the museum will host the series, which is a national program distributed by PBS/Independent Lens. The film series relies on local organizers to find a host location and generate interest. After Bliss Bruen brought the program to Durango and headed it for two years, Suzanne Tyrpak will handle the coordinator’s duties for this season. The series is co-sponsored by the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Durango and Four Corners Gay and Lesbian Alliance for Diversity (4cGLAD).
“I wanted to make sure it kept going,” Tyrpak said. “It’s a big job to take on; what I’m doing is setting dates, getting speakers lined up and doing the PR work as a volunteer. It’s a lot of work but I also have a lot of help.”
“The Graduates” explores pressing issues in education today through the eyes of six Latino students in the U.S. The bilingual, two-part film offers first-hand perspectives on key challenges facing Latino high school students and their families, educators and community leaders. Part One is “Girls” and Part Two is “Boys.” When shown on PBS, the film is a two-night event. It is the story of the graduates who will make up America’s future.
After the two-hour screening, Emma Salazar, student development adviser for the Program for Academic Advancement at Fort Lewis College, will lead a community discussion, including representatives of Compañeros, the Four Corners Immigrant Resource Center that was founded in 1999 as a community response to the Immigration and Naturalization Service plan to open a deportation center in Durango.
Upcoming films in the Durango Community Cinema Series will be “The State of Arizona” (Nov. 20), “Las Marthas” (Jan. 15), “The Trials of Muhammad Ali (Feb. 19), “Medora” (April 16) and “The New Black.”
Durango Community Cinema and PBS/Independent Lens will present “The Graduates” at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at the Durango Discovery Museum’s Powerhouse Theater, 1333 Camino del Rio. Admission is free. For more information, email Suzanne.Tyrpak@gmail.com.