True/False Film Festival: An Interview with Rachel Lears

In this episode of The Missouri Review’s Soundbooth Podcast, audio intern Annie Thomas gets a glimpse into Rachel Lears’ experience creating her documentary Knock Down The House, which follows the congressional campaigns of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Cori Bush, Amy Vilela, and Paula Jean Swearengin. This documentary emphasizes the drive and ambition of these four women, ultimately highlighting the intensity it takes to run for Congress with no political background, little funds, and large competitors. Lears’ documentary will be released at a crucial time in American political history, as it emphasizes the current tension in Washington, and parallels with everyday citizens practicing their constitutional rights to run for public office. Ocasio-Cortez, Bush, Vilela, and Swearengin’s  campaigns share a common desire to represent the undermined communities of America, yet their runs for office result in three devastating losses and one groundbreaking win. Bought by Netflix, for the highest sum they have paid for a single documentary, Knock Down The House will be available to the public on May 1st.


True/False Film Festival: An Interview with Julien Elie of ‘Dark Suns’

This week on The Missouri Review’s Soundbooth Podcast, intern Hannah Kauffman interviews film director Julien Elie amidst the hustle and bustle of the True/False Film Festival. In his documentary Dark Suns, Elie sets out to uncover the stories of disappeared women in Mexico, as well as the violence against journalists, union leaders, social rights activists, and priests. Listen as he shines light on the victims and talks about the ways in which film can help raise awareness about these issues. For more information regarding the film, visit For any questions regarding the film, please email


True/False Film Festival Podcast: An interview with Stephen Maing

This week on The Missouri Review‘s Soundbooth Podcast we interview documentary filmmaker Stephen Maing about his newest film project, Crime + Punishment, which recently screened at the 2018 True/False film festival in Columbia, Missouri.  Crime + Punishment is a powerful film that spotlights the systemic problems that plague the New York Police Department – the largest in the nation – and the small, courageous group of officers who sue the city in an attempt to fix it.  Stephen Maing has directed award-winning films such as High Tech, Low life, which won Best Documentary & Cinematography Awards at various festivals, and The Surrender, which received the 2016 World Press Photo Award for Best Documentary and was also nominated for a 2016 Emmy for Outstanding Short Documentary.  Stephen has directed films for Time Magazine, The Nation, The Intercept, and The New York Times.

Interview conducted by TMR Audio Intern Bennett G. Jacobs.