UTAH TECH UNIVERSITY'S STUDENT NEWS SOURCE | November 11, 2022

DOCUTAH considered successful

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DOCUTAH attracted a wide range of individuals and impacted the community with 50 different documentaries. 

DOCUTAH was created and began to showcase documentaries created by filmmakers from all over the globe in 2009. This year 50 films, along with 12 student films, were involved with the festival.

Directors, such as David Driver, who directed “Way of Life,” hope the film festival is an opportunity for students and non-students to gain worldly views and have a chance to become aware of subjects they otherwise would not.

Many students, like Alex Cox, a junior communication major from Willard, went to see a documentary with the motive of gaining credit for a class but left with a different mindset.

“The films help you see a different side of the world,” Cox said. “It gives you a different perspective and forces you out of your bubble.”

The festival helps students discover and become moved by a multitude of topics, while offering scholarship opportunities. Students had a chance to win one of four $500 scholarships by entering their tickets into a raffle.

DOCUTAH announced Ashlee Millet, Vilca Hauili, Arika Middleton and Dax Sederholm, as the scholarship winners on Facebook Saturday evening.

Film director Jem Moore, who created “The Key Master,” said he appreciates student participation in the festival.

“The thing I noticed is that the community is hugely supportive here,” Moore said. “The attendance has been amazing. It’s really cool to see lines of people standing outside the Black Box Theatre waiting to get in and people inside being disappointed when they have to leave because they want to stay and watch the next film.”

People from all walks of life attended DOCUTAH. 

“The attitudes of the people here are so engaged with the films and the festival,” Moore said. “It’s just been awesome.”

The documentaries are valuable to all kinds of people, even those at a young age. Kathleen and Brian Smith, who hosted the filmmaker and media reception at their business, Ms. K’s Jewelry, took their children to see “Heart of the Andes.” 

“It speaks right to your heart,” Brian Smith said. “I’ve never seen anything that just turned a corner and for so many people. So many people walked out asking themselves, ‘What are we about?’ Our kids were just like, ‘Wow.’”

The DOCUTAH festival wrapped up with “An Ordinary Hero,” a film directed by Loki Mulholland. Mulholland tells the story of his mother, Joan Trumpauer, who was a young, white woman heavily involved in the Civil Rights Movement.

Trumpauer was in the midst of protests, walked along-side Martin Luther King Jr., and had been put on death row all by the age of 19.

Mulholland said he wanted to share his mother’s story of courage and tremendous accomplishments she had achieved at a young age. As Mulholland spoke, his eyes welled up and it was apparent that his mother’s message moved him. His mother was his main inspiration for the film, Mulholland said. 

Trumpauer is a living example of the impact one person can have on the world, Mulholland said.

“Fear, stop it, don’t waste any energy on being afraid,” Trumpauer said. “Decide what is important to you, whatever the issue is. We have got no shortage of issues. Go out there and do something.”