Broken Mirrors

American Culture, Jewish Film, Religion, Short Film
John Henry Davis
10 minutes


The ten-minute documentary "Broken Mirrors" tells the story of the filmmaker's lost identity, a Jewish heritage that had been suppressed for generations. Later in her life the filmmaker's sister went on to become a cantor in Ohio, and returned to these forgotten Jewish roots. Through interviews with family members, family photographs, and home movies, the video poses the question: "what are the ethical and emotional costs of denying Jewish identity?" At the end, we discover the strength of these "Jewish roots": no matter how hard we try, we cannot escape who we are.


John Henry Davis

Mr. Davis is a director of theatre, film, and television. He recently directed the feature film “Ordinary Sinner” starring A. Martinez. This year he won Best Director for the film at the Slamdunk Film Festival in Park City, Utah. The film also won Best feature at the Slamdunk and the Audience Choice Award at the Greenwich Film Festival. Mr. Davis also produced and directed the short film “Magic Lantern” by Monte Merrick, which was featured at the Chicago International Children’s Film Festival. For television, Mr. Davis has directed for “One Life To Live” and has produced and directed numerous documentaries, including a television pilot for Annenberg/CPB about Critical Thinking. His other documentaries include “Best Beginnings”, a film about a child-care program in Washington Heights, produced by The Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Children. Mr. Davis has also made several educational documentaries for the Vassar Exploring Transfer Program and the City University of New York. This spring, he will direct an episode of “Oz” for HBO.

In the theatre, John Henry Davis is known for developing new works with historical subjects both in New York and across the country. He directed the New York premiere of “Papa”, a play about Earnest Hemingway, starring Len Cariou. Other productions include the New York premiere of Neal Bell’s “Cold Sweat” Off-Broadway at Playwrights Horizons, as well as “Mountain” about Justice William Douglas at the Lucille Lortel Theatre, the Ford’s Theatre in Washington and other regional theatres on tour. Mr. Davis directed the premieres of the “Eleanor” about the life of Eleanor Roosevelt at the Seattle Center Theatre and Musical Theater West. Other premieres include Thomas Babe’s “Planet Fires” at GEVA and the Mark Taper Forum, “Thomas Edison”, written by Peter Parnell and “Paul Robeson”, written by Ossie Davis, both premiering in New York. John Henry Davis is a Professor of Media/Speech/Theatre at LaGuardia Community College in New York City.


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