The Cleveland International Film Festival promotes artistically and culturally significant film arts through education and exhibition to enrich the life of the community.
Run Time: 82 minutes
Dr. Mehret Mandefro is a woman on a mission. An Ethiopian-American in the last year of her medical residency at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx, she's made it her life's work to empower young, heterosexual, African-American women – the group statistically most likely to be infected with HIV/AIDS. Convinced that the reasons for the epidemic include women's lack of emotional control in their relationships and the ineffectiveness of sexual education programs taught in schools, Dr. Mehret embarks on a program of personal outreach. After working long hours at the hospital, she treks to the apartments of her patients, inquiring about their emotional health, asking them about their relationships, and reminding them they need to be able to say "no." She also travels to Ethiopia to pioneer an Ethiopian-American HIV/AIDS prevention project. One intriguing aspect of ALL OF US (originally screened at the 32nd CIFF) is Mehret's candid musings on her own romantic relationship, with its inherent joys and frustrations. When she lets her hair down, steps out of her doctor's role, and confesses her own weaknesses, this brilliant doctor sounds just like one of us. – B.B.