Planning a Film Screening in Your Community (check out the infographic!)

Screening a film is a great way to introduce a variety of topics, including healthy relationships or the portrayal of gender norms in the media; and a screening can inspire people who might want to get involved in the issue of domestic violence advcacy. A film screening can be an event in itself, offering a chance to learn something new and meet people, or can be part of a broader event, involving speakers or a panel discussion. 

Here’s how to do it:

1. First, decide on a film. Check out a few ideas below!
Most films do require you to purchase a license for public screenings. Get more info on licensing requirements here.

2. Consider partnering with members of the broader community. Community partners can assist in securing a venue, providing refreshments and/or screening equipment (computer, projector, speakers), or for getting the word out to a wider audience! Check out our sample Co-sponsor Commitment Form.

3. Find a venue. If your organization doesn’t have the space, try a community church, library, or even outside (all you’ll need is a white wall or sheet, and a nice level ground for lawn chairs).

4. Get the word out! Use social media; create a Facebook Event page and share it widely; post on community calendars; put up flyers in your local restaurants and bars, libraries, etc.; make sure your Board Members know and plan to attend. You can also post the event on Violence Free Colorado’s statewide Event Calendar here.

5. Discuss: On the night of your screening, enjoy watching the film. Take some pictures and let Violence Free Colorado know how much fun you’re having (post them on Violence Free Colorado’s Facebook page and use #DVAMColorado). After the movie, host a panel or other discussion. Consider the following discussion question and tell us what you think (tweet highlights from your discussions or other questions on Violence Free Colorado’s Twitter feed and use #DVAMColorado:

  • As a viewer, did you identify any warning signs of unhealthy relationships throughout the film? (Not sure what unhealthy relationship behaviors are? Check out these Red Flags to help guide your discussion)

  • How did the characters make choices around laying blame on others for their experiences?

  • How does Hollywood influence our perceptions about what the “norm” is in a relationship? Are unhealthy relationship behaviors in this film portrayed as romantic or desirable?

  • If you could rewrite one scene or relationship in the film, what would you do differently? Think about replacing unhealthy relationship behaviors with healthy ones. What outcomes change? (Check out these Signs of a Healthy Relationship list to help guide your discussion)

6. Get creative! There are lots of ways to engage your audience. For example, check out these #DVAMColorado Bingo Cards. Have prizes for winners, or enter winner into  drawing for a grand prize (your co-sponsors might help you secure donations of prizes).


DVAM DV Program Community Screening Kit (PDF)

Looking for ideas?

Some Violence Free Colorado member programs watched a couple films from different genres, and have put together sample screening party questions and social media posts to help guide you. (Warning…Spoiler alerts!)

You can join them on October 25th at 5pm for a statewide movie night AT YOUR HOUSE! That’s right! You can interact with folks from around the state from the comfort of your couch. Choose a movie, invite some friends, pop some popcorn, and hop on Twitter or FB to share your thoughts! We’ve even got Bingo Cards you can use!

List of Films:
Y Tu Mama Tambien
All About Eve

Movie: Pride

Discussion Questions:

  1. Talk about a time where you have collaborated with an unexpected ally. What did you learn?
  2. Have you witnessed solidarity and overcoming bias in the way the miners and LGSM were able to work together?
  3. What was the benefit of being a gay only group?
  4. Why do you think most of the lesbians of the group split off?
  5. Why were the men less willing to accept LGSM? Does it happen often that women are more accepting of queer relationships (with the exception of that one mean female character)?

Sample Social Media

  1. FB: Watching Pride: How do you think this form of solidarity can be used in modern struggles? #DVAMColorado
  2. FB: Watching Pride for #DVAMColorado: Although they don’t portray DV in the film, queer relationships experience DV at comparable rates as heterosexual couples.
  3. FB: Watching Pride: What are some of the issues/challenges that the miners and LGSM had in working together? #DVAMColorado
  4. Twitter: Watching Pride for #DVAMColorado: This is the kind of solidarity we need in the fight against DV!


Movie: Y Tu Mama Tambien

Discussion Questions:

  1. What are some of the characteristics of Julio and Tenoch’s views of the women in their lives? What sort of language do they use to talk about women? How do those views and language affect how you as a viewer perceive their characters? Do you feel it is a realistic depiction of young men?
  2. Luisa is presented as a character who is willing to go against expectations and social and gender norms. How does Luisa fit into the road trip and Julio and Tenoch’s relationship? What is her role in the evolution of their friendship? Does it change over the course of the film?
  3. Throughout the film the narrator shares insights into Julio and Tenoch’s friendship and the secrets they keep from each other. How do gender norms, heteronormativity, and class influence affect their relationship? What are the barriers to them being truthful with one another?
  4. Luisa, Cecilia, and Ana are the three objects of Julio and Tenoch’s sexual desire. What are your reactions to the way the three women characters are viewed by and interact with Julio and Tenoch? What are the similarities and differences in their portrayal in the film? (Keep in mind that though Ceci and Ana are not present in the immediate storyline, their characters are the subject of many conversations and still influence the narrative development.)

Social Media Sample Posts:

  1. FB: I’ve definitely covered the bingo square “Jealous Character” watching Y Tu Mama Tambien. Julio and Tenoch, tranquilo.
  2. FB: I love Luisa’s declaration of her own manifesto.  My favorite tenet is “I pick the music.” What is yours?
  3. FB: Y Tu Mama Tambien was tagged as a teen drama on its website when it was produced. How does its portrayal of gender and sexuality differ from, let’s say, the film ‘American Pie’?
  4. Twitter: I’m watching Y Tu Mama Tambien for #DVAMColorado! Who else loves a road trip movie?
  5. Twitter: “Play with babies and you end up washing diapers” Well said, Luisa!
  6. Twitter: I’m watching Y Tu Mama Tambien for #DVAMColorado. What’s your favorite Alfonso Cuaron film? Go!


Movie: Crash

Discussion Questions:

  1. What role did anger or hurt play in how the characters treated each other? Were the characters’ anger or hurt justified? (Officer worried about dad’s health; father trying to keep daughter safe; businessman trying to protect his store; couple harassed by police; couple carjacked at gunpoint; man trying to help immigrants)
  2. How did the characters make choices around placing blame on others for their experiences
  3. How did traditional roles of masculinity play into how Officer John Ryan takes care of his father’s illness? How are these roles harmful to men?
  4. Consider Detective Graham Waters’ relationship with his mother, Cameron Thayer, and Christine Thayer when dealing with Officer Ryan or Farhad the market owner. Do you feel like this is an accurate portrayal of the helplessness?
  5. What can be learned from this film and the current state of racial tension on a national level?

Social Media Sample Posts:

  1. FB: Watching Crash for #DVAMColorado: What role does racism play in the way the characters treat each other?
  2. FB: Watching Crash for DVAM: Are the stereotypes used helping to break down racism and biases or is it reinforcing them? #DVAMColorado
  3. FB: Watching Crash: What character resonates with you most? Which character do you find the most difficult to relate to? Why? #DVAMColorado
  4. Twitter: Watching Crash for #DVAMColorado: Even though this movie is 11 years old, the message is extremely relevant today.


Movie: All About Eve

Discussion Questions

  1. Eve is positioned as a sort of succubus or femme fatale character archetype. Why is this archetype problematic? What are modern conceptions of this archetype in today’s media?
  2. ‘All About Eve’ is the story of Eve Harrington told through the narrative perspective of many of the characters in a sporadic voice-over. What does it mean that we learn “all about Eve” from everyone but Eve herself? How might that influence the content of her story? How might it be different if Eve told her own story?
  3. Margo is often shown in a state of deconstruction–removing her wigs, cold cream on her face, in robes or nightclothes–while Eve is shown more often in a put-together state, occasionally with a camera filter effect to lend her a soft glow. How do the differences of the ways Margo and Eve are portrayed physically affect your perception of their characters? How does your perception change over the course of the film?
  4. One of the conflicts presented in ‘All About Eve’ is of a cultural shift from theater to movies as the more dominant form of art and media consumption. How does this relate to conversations we have about media forms today?

Social Media Sample Posts

  1. FB: As the president of the Margo Channing fan club, I think it’s fair to say that the Margo at the beginning of ‘All About Eve’ has more chutzpah and agency than end-of-the-movie Margo. Who’s with me?
  2. FB: Has anyone else noticed Eve is usually hanging out in doorways, alleyways, stairways, or backstage? She’s never really in a room. What’s up with that? What does that imply about her character and how she fits into the world of All About Eve?
  3. FB: Watching All About Eve for #DVAMColorado. If only this movie had a “good role model” relationship, I’d be on my way to BINGO!
  4. Twitter: Bill calls Margo a junkyard, Margo calls Bill a psychotic. What a happy, healthy pair! NOT!
  5. Twitter: I’m watching All About Eve for #DVAMColorado and though it’s from 1950. I recognize Margo as the strong female of today’s media who’s struggling to “have it all.”
  6. Twitter: Tweet if you spot a certain iconic blonde bombshell!


Movie: Chef

Discussion Questions:

  1. In Miami, why does Carl asks Inez is she ever slept with Marvin after they (Carl and Inez) divorced? Why do you think this was important for Carl to know?
  2. How does the behavior of the men in the kitchen make this an environment not comfortable for women?
  3. Carl says to his boss, “The kitchen is my domain.” Why are women considered to be the ones who should cook in a household, but in a professional setting, there are more men who are chefs than women?

Social Media Sample Posts

  1. FB: Watching ‘Chef’ for #DVAMColorado. Can’t decide how I feel about Carl’s parenting. Totally loves his son, is he a positive role model? How does he model his values for his son: about family, work, how to treat others?
  2. FB: Watching ‘Chef’ for #DVAMColorado. Totally a feel-good movie, but I’m kind of tired of the “absent dad has epiphany and turns into ‘Dad of the Year’” movies. Do families really need a life changing road trip to appreciate one another?
  3. Twitter: Watching ‘Chef’ for #DVAMColorado. I’m getting hungry just watching! Think I’ll pop some popcorn and work on getting Bingo.
  4. Twitter: Watching ‘Chef’ for #DVAMColorado. Glad to see Sofia Vergara finally portrayed as intelligent woman instead of simply an object of desire.