Midnight Family


See part two of Kahlil Joseph’s BLKNWS project, shown in conjunction with their presentation at the Sundance Film Festival, before the film. Details at the bottom of the page.

In Mexico City, the Ochoas run a family-owned ambulance service, one of many private paramedic outfits addressing the massive civic void left when there are just 45 municipal ambulances serving a population that tops 9 million.

“Midnight Family is both a compassionate portrait of a working-class family and a frightening ride through a broken health care system.” – Monica Castillo, The Wrap

Living in circumstances only slightly less dire than those of the victims they treat and transport, the Ochoa family nightly faces the spectrums of urgency and boredom, honor and corruption, life and death—all with admirable resolve. Teenage Juan captivates as he helms the family’s ambulance, with his father, uncle, and younger brother rounding out the band of nocturnal rescuers who careen through Mexico City’s neon-noir streets evading dense traffic, competing paramedics, and dubious police. In director Luke Lorentzen’s bold and balletic vérité treatment, action, drama, humor, and pathos fill the screen while an ominous microcosm of health care and humanity plays out in stark relief. A suspenseful and vivid tale of subsistence, Midnight Family refers not only to the Ochoas but to the enduring community of, and connections among, those living and dying in the dark. (Dir. by Luke Lorentzen, 2019, Mexico, in Spanish with English subtitles, 81 mins., Not Rated)

Kahlil Joseph’s BLKNWS

“Kahlil Joseph’s mesmerizing news-creation machine is a soulful and rousing intervention into the “news-industrial complex” that is presently manifesting an epidemic in our society: news addiction powered by corporate digital platforms on networked devices. BLKNWS combines appropriated news and social media with originally produced anchored segments to create a continuously updated broadcast that is as much a news service as it is a portal to an elevated state of awareness.” – Sundance Film Festival

BLKNWS newsreels will also run at 10 other art-house cinemas around the country:

Belcourt Theatre — Nashville, Tennessee

Cinema Detroit — Detroit, Michigan

Michigan Theater — Ann Arbor, Michigan

The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston — Houston, Texas

Nitehawk Cinema — Brooklyn, New York

Northwest Film Forum — Seattle, Washington

O Cinema — Miami, Florida

Parkway Theatre — Baltimore, Maryland

The State Theatre — Ann Arbor, Michigan

Texas Theatre — Dallas, Texas