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Screen Time: Week of June 20, 2021

By Tom White

 A young Black girl in shorts and a t-shirt runs along the seashore. Tai Sheppard in ‘Sisters on Track’ (directors: Corinne van der Borch, Tone Grøttjord-Glenne). Courtesy of Netflix

Screen Time is your curated weekly guide to excellent documentaries and nonfiction programs that you can watch at home. 

For those of us who spent our summers poring over the comic strip Peanuts, the new documentary Who Are You, Charlie Brown? (director: Michael Bonfiglio; producer: Marcella Steingart) promises to be a trip down memory lane. Narrated by actor Lupita Nyong’o, the documentary makes for perfect multi-generational viewing and releases on Apple TV+ on June 25—just in time for summer vacations.

In celebration of Pride Month, watch Ronald Chase's Cathedral (1971) and Parade (1972)—films that were considered lost until they were found and restored in 2019. Made right after the 1969 Stonewall Riots, the films are early documents of the radical queer organizing that marked the post-Stonewall years. Watch the films and an interview with Chase on MUBI. 

Watch Jane Fonda and Donald Sutherland take on the propaganda machine of another radicalizing event of the 1970s: the Vietnam War. In a recently restored version of F.T.A. (director: Francine Parker), now playing on Netflix, watch Fonda and Sutherland tour the Free the Army comedy show across southeast Asia that was aimed at inspiring veterans to question the war. 

Also on Netflix starting June 24, watch Sisters on Track (directors: Corinne van der Borch, Tone Grøttjord-Glenne; producers: Anita Rehoff Larsenthat, Tone Grøttjord-Glenne), which follows three sisters: Tai, Rainn and Brooke Sheppard as they chase their dreams on the track field while overcoming the traumas of living in one of New York City’s many homeless shelters. 

In LFG, filmmakers Andrea Nix Fine and Sean Fine focus on the U.S. Women’s National Soccer Team and their gender discrimination lawsuit against the country’s Soccer Federation. Join soccer stars Megan Rapinoe, Jessica McDonald, Becky Sauerbrunn, Kelley O’Hara and others as they take to the field and court, fighting for equal rights for themselves and the women who will come after them. The film premieres on HBO Max on June 24. 

In Newark, NJ, race, mortality and spirituality meet at an unlikely venue: Hanif’s funeral home, where the elderly Muslim casket maker mentors youngsters, Furquan and Naz. On PBS’ Independent Lens, watch Two Gods (director: Zeshawn Ali, producer: Aman Ali), the story of Hanif told with a subtlety that is absent from most depictions of Muslim Americans.

The Third Horizon Film Festival, though based in Miami, is virtual this year. From their fantastic lineup, celebrating stories from the Caribbean and its diaspora, we will be watching Jessica Beshir’s Faya Dayi, Michèle Stephenson’s Stateless, and the curated works of filmmaker Morgan Quaintance, among others.