By the People is an insider's look at who and what it takes to put on an American election. Set in Indianapolis, Indiana - a blue city inside a longtime red state - as events unfold over the 11 days leading up to and including the 2004 Presidential election, this unprecedented documentary vividly reveals the myriad of activities required to maintain the most basic element of democracy--our right to vote.
For many Americans, elections are a mind-numbing barrage of media hype, sloganeering and partisan animosity. Little attention is paid to the real work that goes on. Armed with an unflinching eye, a storyteller's sensibility and a sense of humor, first time director Malindi Fickle dramatically captures average Americans of all political stripes working side by side to insure that everyone in Indianapolis who wants to vote is able to vote. The result is a refreshingly honest, surprisingly funny and unexpectedly inspiring story about the guts of our political process.
The film follows County Clerk Doris Anne Sadler, a young elected official with her career on the line, as she and her small crew of government employees, together with a dedicated but aging band of volunteers, struggle to make the election possible. After witnessing their chaotic battle against time, lack of resources and political obstacles, it is difficult to ever again take your right to vote for granted. Against the backdrop of the most highly charged election of our time, By the People gets to the real heart of democracy and becomes a rallying cry against the apathy that is undermining our most precious right.
Following the film there is a panel discussion featuring:
Doris Anne Sadler, Indianapolis County Clerk
Malindi Fickle, Director, By The People
John Ravitz, Executive Director, NYC Board of Elections
By the People is being presented as part of the Impact Festival.