Independent Lens Episodes

1999, TV Show

Independent Lens Season 1 episodes

I Can't Believe I Married a Lesbian Season 1, Episode 10

“I Can't Believe I Married a Lesbian,” a marital post-mortem by filmmaker Gordon Stuart Perkin. Included: interviews with his ex-wife, and relatives and friends. read more

Secret People Season 1, Episode 9

“Secret People,” a 1998 documentary about the Federal Government's hospital for patients with Hansen's disease (better known as leprosy) in Carville, La. The hour recalls the facility's history (when it was founded in 1921, patients were held in quarantine), and includes interviews with patients. read more

Sing Faster: The Stagehand's Ring Cycle Season 1, Episode 8

The San Francisco Opera's 1990 mounting of Richard Wagner's “Der Ring des Nibelungen”---as seen and heard by the opera's stagehands, particularly Ken “Spike” Kirkland, who keeps up a running commentary throughout the hour, which concludes with the four “Ring Cycle” operas---all 17 hours of them---compressed into 60 seconds. read more

And Baby Makes Two Season 1, Episode 7

Following six New York City women as they conceive children and raise them without the assistance of a partner. read more

Holy Tortilla; Lock and Key Season 1, Episode 6

Two dramas: A devout woman sees the face of Jesus in a “Holy Tortilla.” A blind jazz critic forges an unlikely friendship with a locksmith in “Lock and Key.” Margarita: Adelina Anthony. Roberto: Julio Cedillo. Rosa: Cecilia Flores (“Holy Tortilla”). Maxine: Qwendolyn Mulumba. Dexter: E. Patrick Coker (“Lock and Key”). read more

The Jew in the Lotus Season 1, Episode 5

“The Jew in the Lotus” chronicles a 1990 journey to Dharamsala, India, by author Rodger Kamenetz and eight Jewish leaders to meet with the Dalai Lama and discuss the “spiritual survival” of Jews and Tibetan Buddhists. The hour also chronicles a spiritual journey by Kamenetz, whose book “The Jew in the Lotus” is the inspiration for this film. read more

The Man Who Drove with Mandela Season 1, Episode 4

“The Man Who Drove with Mandela” profiles Cecil Williams, a white (and gay) South African theater director and anti-apartheid activist who was arrested with Nelson Mandela in 1962 (the fugitive Mandela was posing as Williams' chauffeur at the time). Corin Redgrave portrays Williams in reenacted “self-reflections.” Directed by Greta Schiller (“Paris Is a Woman”). read more

Visas and Virtues; I Am Viet Hung Season 1, Episode 3

“Visa and Virtues” concerns a Japanese diplomat's dealings with Jewish refugees in Lithuania during WWII. “I Am Viet Hung” profiles an elderly Vietnamese opera singer living in uneasy retirement in the U.S., as younger Vietnamese grow increasingly indifferent to his art and accomplishments. read more

Nothing but the Truth Season 1, Episode 2

“Nothing but the Truth,” filmmaker Mark Steven Shepherd's take on the carnival atmosphere outside the Santa Monica, Cal., courthouse during O.J. Simpson's 1996-97 civil trial. Shepherd also looks at media coverage of the scene (and the trial), and follows tourists as they visit Simpson's Brentwood home and the site of the slayings of Nicole Brown Simpson and Ronald Goldman. read more

Wannabe: Life and Death in a Small Town Gang Season 1, Episode 1

A report on “gangsta” inroads in Middle America focuses on a murder-suicide in Appleton, Wis., filmmaker John Whitehead's hometown, where three teens were found dead in May 1995, days after another gang member had been murdered. Whitehead looks for explanations in interviews with parents of the dead youths, as well as Appleton teachers and police. Also: TV news footage of the incident and excerpts from court sessions. read more

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Premiered: August 09, 1999, on PBS
Rating: TV-PG
User Rating: (21 ratings)
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Premise: Independent filmmakers are spotlighted in this anthology, which concentrates on documentaries, but occasionally features artist profiles and offbeat fictional films.

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