ArtCentral has partnered with The Northern Hills Rotary Club to create a film series that will benefit the community. Through this series, we use art as a tool – films in this case – to engage our community on specific topics that are relevant to both partnering organizations.

Films provide a neutral (non-threatening) way to learn about and discuss topics that may be otherwise unfamiliar or more difficult to discuss. For this series, we have selected four films that address a range of topics including rural connectedness, peace, conflict resolution, inclusivity, economic development, community collaboration, and diversity.

Following each film, the co-hosting organization will help facilitate a discussion about ideas presented in the film. Co-hosts for films are organizations in our community and will help us talk about how these issues relate to the Spearfish community. The co-hosts will also actively promote each film to their organization to increase awareness of the film series offerings.

The Northern Hills Rotary Club is involved not only in helping to fund the event but also in volunteering during the film screenings and supporting publicity of the events. The film series is also made possible through funding from the Bush Foundation’s ArtCentral Community Innovation Grant.

The films begin in January 2018 and continue with a film per month.

ArtCentral Film Festival – Season 1

Each film is FREE and open to the public. In the film listing below, please note the location, time, and co-host.

If You Build It | Jan. 21, 2018 | 2:00 p.m.

2013, NR, 1h 25m
Directed by: Patrick Creadon

Location: The Matthews Opera House theater

CoHosts: BH Home Builders Association and SHS Shop Instructor, Eric Ligtenberg

“If You Build It” follows designer-activists Emily Pilloton and Matthew Miller to rural Bertie County, the poorest in North Carolina. They work with local high school students to help transform both their community and their lives. Living on credit and grant money and fighting a change-resistant school board, Pilloton and Miller lead their students through a year-long, full-scale design and build a project that does much more than just teach basic construction skills. It shows ten teenagers the power of design-thinking to re-invent not just their town but their own sense of what’s possible.

DISCUSSION follows the movie until approximately 5 p.m.


Waste Land | Feb. 20, 2018 | 6:30 p.m.

2010, NR, 1h 39m
Directed by: Lucy Walker and Karen Harley 

Location: The Matthews Opera House theater

Co-host: BHSU Sustainability Committee

“Waste Land” is an uplifting feature documentary highlighting the transformative power of art and the beauty of the human spirit. Top-selling contemporary artist, Vik Muniz, takes us on an emotional journey from Jardim Gramacho, the world’s largest landfill on the outskirts of Rio de Janeiro, to the heights of international art stardom. Vik collaborates with the brilliant catadores, pickers of recyclable materials. They are true Shakespearean characters who live and work in the garbage quoting Machiavelli and showing us how to recycle ourselves.

DISCUSSION follows the movie until approximately 9 p.m.


Make No Noise: The Story of a Skatepark | March 20, 2018 | 6:30 p.m.

2016, NR, 1h 20m
Directed by: Cecilia Cornejo

Location: The Matthews Opera House theater

Hosted by Cecilia Cornejo

“Make No Noise” chronicles the process of securing a site for a permanent skatepark in Northfield, MN and the subsequent support of local skateboarders whose efforts date back to 1998, when the city banned skateboarding from its streets. The film examines Northfield’s delay in responding to the needs of these youth, calling into question the town’s view of itself and its reputation as a welcoming community that’s especially good for kids. Celebrating the skateboarders’ resolve to create a place for their sport, the film is a testament to young people’s resilience, dedication, and perseverance.

DISCUSSION follows the movie until approximately 9 p.m.


More Than a Word | April 12, 2018 | 6:30 p.m.

2017, NR, 1h 10m
Directed by: John and Kenn Little

Location: JONAS Hall, Room305, Black Hills State University

Co-Host: BHSU Center for American Indian Studies

“More Than A Word” analyzes the Washington DC professional football team and their use of the derogatory term “R*dskins.” Using interviews from both those in favor of changing the name and those against, “More Than A Word” presents a deeper analysis of the many issues surrounding the Washington team name. The documentary also examines the history of Native American cultural appropriation.

DISCUSSION follows the movie until approximately 9 p.m.