Ed Rampell

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Ed Rampell is a Los Angeles-based film historian and critic who contributes regularly to The Progressive; he created the Progie Awards in 2007 to highlight the year’s best progressive films and filmmakers. Rampell is the author of the 2005 book Progressive Hollywood, A People’s Film History of the United States and the coauthor of three other film history books, most recently The Hawaii Movie and Television Book.  

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Courtesy Holly Near

In a new documentary, PBS explores the legacy of singer and activist Holly Near. Read more



Richard F. Outcault

Film Review of “Joseph Pulitzer: Voice of the People.” Read more


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Ed Rampell

The 2019 “Spirit Awards” honor progressive, diverse, inclusive films. Are such categories becoming irrelevant? Read more


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From If Beale Street Could Talk

Finally, James Baldwin’s big screen U.S. debut. Read more

Dispatches 1 Comments


Chessum/Supervision. Photo courtesy of Magnolia.

The best exposé on Fox in years dives into its former chief’s history of racism and the sexual misconduct that would ultimately be his undoing. Read more




A new docuseries begs the question: is the enemy of our enemy really our friend? Read more


How to survive family Thanksgiving and a dictatorial state. Read more


In 1917, striking copper miners were rounded up at gunpoint and dumped in the middle of a New Mexico desert on the orders of their employer. A new genre-bending film tells their story, and its ripple effects. Read more


The action of Daniel’s metaphorical one-act drama, “Gunshot,” takes place on a spectral set where characters wake up to their condition and decide to make a change. Read more


The cinematic son of America’s industrial proletariat launches a blistering broadside. Read more


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David Lee / Focus Features

The movie is Lee’s best and most radical film in decades, and a lot of fun as well. Read more


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Indiana State University Library

A review of “American Socialist, The Life & Times of Eugene Victor Debs.” Read more

Dispatches 1 Comments

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Scott Green / Bleecker Street

The thirty-seven-year-old Iowa-raised Foster often plays outsiders and marginalized characters. His most recent film, he says, reminds us there are good people, even in scary times. Read more


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Passion River Films

Disguised as a sports documentary, the film takes a critical look at the complex world of migrant laborers chasing a dream. Plus, an exclusive clip. Read more


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Michael Lamont

George Takei talks about his latest work, lessons from history, and combatting racism and sexism today. Read more


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Tim Robbins discusses real world issues within the context of modern film and stage productions. Read more


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“I wanted young blacks to see their own history on the big screen. Today, it’s still a big problem, telling black stories in cinema.” Read more


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A new Netflix documentary about the famed activist lawyer is released just as the #MeToo wave ‘becomes a tsunami’ Read more