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No Umbrella

No Umbrella - Election Day in the City is an unblinking look at the 2004 US Election Day failures in one of Ohio's poorest neighborhoods. In the most hotly contested state in the country, gridlock at inner city polls ignites tempers and sets off charges of conspiracy.

No Umbrella drops us squarely into the chaos as we watch the irascible octogenarian councilwoman, Ms. Fannie Lewis, take on polling place breakdowns, an unresponsive bureaucracy and an increasingly agitated electorate.

'Makes a convincing case for an overhaul of this country's voting process.' The (Raleigh, NC) News and Observer

'Infuriating minidocumentary' Salt Lake City Weekly

'Laura Paglin's 26 minute documentary is sure to rile viewers of any political affiliation.' L.A. Splash Magazine

'At times approaches the absurdity of Samuel Beckett's most twisted plays.' Full Frame Documentary Film Festival program

'Paglin deserves a blank check for whatever she chooses to do next.' Cleveland Free Times

'Paglin captured our desperation and the enormity of our challenge...We all need an 'aha' moment to jolt us into rethinking, reframing, and changing direction. If this isn't that moment, I don't know what is.'

'[No Umbrella] will no doubt raise questions about an outdated and undemocratic voting bureaucracy.' The Can Magazine

'Raw, brutal filmmaking...[the film] is a testament to people who will do whatever it takes to fight for their basic rights as American citizens...No Umbrella will make you angry.' Blogcritics Magazine

'The 26-minute documentary should stir anyone who believes in basic American virtues - whether Democratic or Republican - into action.'

'No Umbrella is a MUST viewing and must owning for everyone. If you're a Democrat who believes in democracy it will outrage you. If you're an independent who believes in democracy it will outrage you. If you're a Republican who believes in democracy it will outrage you...INCREDIBLE...will keep you thinking for days.' The Moderate Voice

'Through Paglin's unassuming camerawork, perfect placement, and tight editing, we are brought front and center in a chaotic and foreign place and time - this could be anywhere, and just down the street...[No Umbrella] works - it stands on its own - it's global and timeless.'

'Paglin managed to succinctly capture both the suspicion and crippling frustration that haunt Ohio's electorate to this day.'

'This is a forceful and unrepentant look at the disorder that took place in a poor Ohio voting district on Election Day 2004. No Umbrella brings us right in the middle of the frenzy caused by a lack of planning and insufficient voting stations...Highly Recommended for audiences middle school and above.' Michael J. Coffta, Business Librarian, Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania, Educational Media Reviews Online

'Filmmaker Laura Paglin's fly-on-the-wall documentary brilliantly captures the frustration in this Election Day mishap, and it also celebrates Fannie Lewis' amazing indefatigable spirit...Just from watching this film, one can easily advocate Lewis for the Congressional Medal of Honor.' Film


Main credits

Paglin, Laura (Producer)
Paglin, Laura (Director)
Paglin, Laura (Film editor)
Paglin, Laura (Cinematographer)
Verh, Duane (Producer)

Other credits

Associate producer, Duane Verh.

Docuseek subjects

Distributor subjects

African-American Studies
American Democracy
American Studies
Citizenship and Civics
Political Science
Race and Racism
Urban Studies


2004 U.S. Election Day, Ohio, hotly contested state, inner city polls, Fannie Lewis,; "No Umbrella"; Bullfrog Films

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