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Capturing the Flag

In 2013, in Shelby County v. Holder, the Supreme Court invalidates the part of the 1965 Voting Rights Act requiring certain states to submit changes in voting laws to the Justice Department for approval. Almost immediately, certain states take voter suppression measures such as enacting voter ID laws, redrawing district boundaries, and repealing same-day registration.

Three months before the 2016 election, a group of volunteers across the country mobilizes to work on voter protection — to observe elections and to assure that all those who wish to vote are legally allowed to do so. Laverne Berry, Steven Miller, and Claire Wright head to North Carolina. What they find at the polls serves as both a warning and a call to action for anyone interested in protecting the "One Man, One Vote" fundamental of our democracy.

Dealing with themes that are constantly sensationalized and manipulated by the media — Left vs. Right, North vs. South, Black vs. White — CAPTURING THE FLAG offers instead deeply personal, often surprising perspectives on the 2016 Presidential Election and its aftermath.

'A film every young adult needs to see. At a time when people across the nation are wondering how they can make a difference, this film says, yes, you can - here are some steps you can take.' Carly Mirabile and Melanie Hogue, Duke Arts, Duke University

'Capturing the Flag reveals the unglamorous role of activists who volunteer their time to do the nitty-gritty work of assisting regular people struggling through the voting process. Students and civic groups will be motivated by the film's central characters to step up their involvement in future elections.' Barry Burden, Professor of Political Science, Director of the Elections Research Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison

'The stories of these voters remind us that the heart of this fight is our shared human stake in our democracy - and Capturing The Flag serves both as a warning and a call to action to activists across the country who are ready to fiercely defend it.' Natasha Pinon, Ms. Magazine

'Capturing the Flag tells the story of four friends awakening to the contemporary assault on democracy, and discovering their own capacity to do something about it. The film is a good primer in citizen action that can be used to start a conversation among concerned citizens, from students to seniors, about what can be done and how we all can get involved in election protection work.' Dr. Lorraine Minnite, Associate Professor and Chair, Public Policy and Administration, Rutgers - The State University of New Jersey, Author, Keeping Down the Black Vote: Race and the Demobilization of American Voters

'Capturing the Flag captures many key elements of the dynamics of voter suppression and its implementation in North Carolina. And it reveals the subversive, anti-American qualities of voter suppression in an effective, personalized way.' Walter Salinger, former Director, The League of Women Voters of North Carolina

'An unbiased story that every American should see...Capturing The Flag demonstrates that democracy at its very core is continually being challenged.' Pamela Powell, Reel Honest Reviews

'I can read about voter suppression and hear about voter suppression, but seeing it unfold on screen is staggering in an entirely different way.' Full Frame Artistic Director Sadie Tillery quoted in PBS's DocSoup

'A microcosm of the passions, absurdities and contradictions of the U.S. election system...Director Anne de Mare's fascinating and sober documentary fights an undercurrent of foregone conclusion, but provides pointed insights into our election system and the soldiers who take up the challenges of making votes count.' Marvin Brown, Quik Flix Hit

'An important film to watch!' Joe Corey, Inside Pulse

'The subtlety with which this kind of suppression happens is significant. It's not as stark as a poll tax or a literacy test. It's a lot of little things that can add up to a big thing.' Jeffrey Billman, The INDY

'This documentary captures the human consequences of legislative changes which embody the cutting edge of aggressive voter suppression efforts at the state level. In addition to illustrating the impact of voter registration purges, the overall complexity, confusion, and hassle of the voting process for some voters is revealed. An excellent tool for illustrating multiple levels of problems with the current structure and the laws governing our elections.' Dr. Keith Bentele, Associate Professor of Sociology, Director of Applied Sociology, University of Massachusetts - Boston


Main credits

De Mare, Anne (film director)
De Mare, Anne (film producer)
Hemmerdinger, Elizabeth (film producer)

Other credits

Editors, Satoko Sugiyama, Aljernon Tunsil; original score, Christopher North; cinematography, Nelson Walker III.


voting rights,voter suppression, election law,elections,disenfranchisement,; "Capturing the Flag"; Bullfrog Films; North Carolina; Cumberland County; voting,doc; history; politics; sociss

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