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Part of SFFILM Festival

The Great American Lie

Directed by Jennifer Siebel Newsom

USA | Documentary | 88

15 Apr
Mon, Apr 15, 2019 at 7:00 pm PT
16 Apr
Tue, Apr 16 at 6:30 pm PT
Victoria Theatre
More tickets may become available during Daily Noon Ticket Releases; check this page for updates.

Guests Expected

Director Jennifer Siebel Newsom and producer Amanda Mortimer are expected to attend both screenings.


We supplement the world premiere of The Great American Lie with an extended conversation on the decline and fall of the American Dream in collaboration with the Aspen Institute, a nonpartisan forum for values-based leadership and the exchange of ideas founded in 1949 and the organization behind the Aspen Ideas Festival, among the world’s most important policy discussion forums.


The “American Dream”–a concept that grows ever more politically charged–is examined and critiqued in Jennifer Siebel Newsom’s (Miss Representation, Festival 2011; The Mask You Live In, 2015) gripping third film. Newsom weaves interviews with famous cultural critics, professors, and local thought leaders–Nicholas Kristof, Linda Darling Hammond, and Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, among others – with on-the-ground activists, including Oakland-based principal Ruby De Tie, who are working every day to help those less fortunate and revealing the many ways in which Americans have been failed by the myth of social mobility.

Closely looking at the current political environment and the ways in which the greatness of America is called into question, Newsom expertly presents the case that many systems – education, prison, health care, minimum wage – are broken and questions how they can be fixed. Ascribing both “masculine” and “feminine” terms to how the government speaks for and about these systems and its citizens, The Great American Lie becomes the timely third installment that blends elements from her previous work to unpack bigger and pressing issues that affect us all.

Director Jennifer Siebel Newsom

After getting her start as an actress, Jennifer Siebel Newsom added producer, writer, and director to her resume. She made her directing debut with Miss Representation (Festival 2011), followed by The Mask You Live In (2015), awarded the Best Achievement in Female Filmmaking jury prize at the Las Vegas International Film Festival. She is the founder of The Representation Project, an organization that works to end gender stereotypes.



Film Details

Year 2019

Language English, Spanish

Premiere World

Runtime 88

Country USA

Director Jennifer Siebel Newsom

Producer Jennifer Siebel Newsom, Amanda Mortimer

Editor Jessica Congdon

Cinematographer John Behrens, Jason Blalock, Jeremey Lavoi

Music Eric Holland