Informant [excerpt]

Summers Henderson edited this 82-minute documentary, along with director Jamie Meltzer and editor John Kane.  The film is a profile of Brandon Darby, a former leftist radical known for his work with the Common Ground organizing group, which helped rebuild New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.  Later, Brandon became an informant for the FBI, and his testimony was the key element of prosecuting and imprisoning two activists who built Molotov cocktails while protesting the 2008 Republican National Convention.  That story was previously told in the documentary "Better This World."  But "Informant" provides a new angle on the story and raises questions about the nature of political convictions.

 

"Informant" premiered at the San Francisco International Film Festival, screened at the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam, the Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival and the Big Sky Documentary Film Festival, and won the Grand Jury Prize at DOC NYC.  The film also won Best Documentary at the Austin Film Festival and Best Editing at the Salem Film Festival.  "Informant" was theatrically distributed by Music Box Films.

 

From the Variety review:  The unreliable-narrator docu develops a new wrinkle or two with "Informant." Jamie Meltzer's engrossing portrait lets Brandon Darby tell his own story.  It's an absorbing puzzle with the potential to intrigue viewers all along the political spectrum.

 

From the Hollywood Reporter review:  Activist groups of all stripes will want to see it, but the force of Darby's personality -- a rich stew of righteousness, arrogance and self-delusion -- gives the doc a psychological appeal independent of politics.