What happens when a woman goes in search of her identity and discovers that much of what she battles against as a community activist in the USA – including sexual and domestic violence – is part of her history and culture on another continent. “A LOT LIKE YOU” is an epic journey by filmmaker Eliaichi Kimaro.
Eliaichi Kimaro is a first-generation American, with a Tanzanian father and a Korean mother. So the notions of culture, race, and the American Dream she inherited were complicated. Like many immigrant parents, her father wanted to raise his US-born kids with a sense of belonging to his homeland. So Eliaichi spent every other summer on a coffee farm on Mt. Kilimanjaro where her father was born and raised. Despite having several summers in Tanzania, her father’s culture and heritage was alien to her.
When Eliaichi started thinking about having kids of her own, she began to struggle with her cultural heritage. If her child asked her who she was, what would she tell him or her? In a attempt to explore her heritage, she began to film her father when he moved back to his homeland, Tanzania. And in the process, she unearthed the beauty and the brutality of the world he’d left behind 40 years earlier.
Despite working over 10 years in the sexual and domestic violence movements, Eliaichi’s conversations with the women in her family unearthed brutal stories of gender violence, the likes of which she had never heard before. And so the narrative of the film expands to include the filmmaker’s story as she comes to terms with this cultural heritage that is in direct conflict with how she defines herself today, both as an activist and as a mother.
“A lot like you” is a beautiful gift from a daughter to her father and elders and from a mother to her daughter. Seven years in the making, the film has morphed from being a tale about her father’s village and heritage to its very essence – “A world away from you is a lot closer than you think“.
Eliaichi Kimaro’s debut feature length documentary is preparing to launch in 2011 after 7 long years of production and post production. And thus begins the daunting journey of marketing, outreach, distribution. She wants the help of REAL TALKIES and its readers to raise awareness about her film.
- Visit the film’s website www.alotlikeyoumovie.com, its blog - http://9elephants.tumblr.com/, like it on its facebook page http://www.facebook.com/?sk=messages#!/pages/A-Lot-Like-You/140607635361. and share it with friends.
- Organize a private screening event -Would “A lot like you” be of interest to your or your community? Contact Eliaichi Kimaro
- Build strategic partnerships: The filmmaker is interested in building strategic partnerships with foundations, non-profits and NGO’s who work with issues raised in the film – ‘Gender Violence’, ‘Transgenerational Trauma’, ‘Female Circumcision’, Interracial/multicultural families’, ‘First Generation Americans’ and ‘Cross Cultural Filmmaking’. Suggest the film to such organizations and help build partnership.
- Assemble an International Advisory Board -The filmmaker is interested in assembling an INTERNATIONAL ADVISORY BOARD who will help them develop a curriculum that will accompany the film. As a firm believer that activism is rooted in story, Eliaichi hopes that the film will be a springboard for community engagement.
“A lot like you” is a very personal documentary, about Eliaichi and her family. Real Talkies commends her efforts and courage to document and share the story of her family with the world. The film has potential to make a difference in the lives of many more people, both as an educational tool and as a tool to prevent gender violence and promote community building. Eliaichi will appreciate all our inputs in giving the film its final push and getting it out for the rest of us to see, interact and become vested in the issues.