T A P E presents SNAPSHOT: Drylongso 15


This film is F-Rated

Celebrating the empowerment of women in the film industry. Read more >

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From the archive

This film was last shown on 30 May 2024

Pica Sullivan is a young art student who lives with her mother and grandmother in Oakland. She works a nighttime job papering walls, which puts her safety at risk. As an outlet for her dysfunctional home life, she photographs young African American men with the belief they are an "endangered species" who may one day become extinct.

Her night job affects her attendance in photography class, which she is also struggling with because she uses a Polaroid for her photos and not the requisite 35 mm camera. One night, Pica meets Tobi, a young woman who is left beaten on a street curb by her abusive boyfriend.

Pica learns Tobi disguises herself as a man to protect herself from violence. Pica and Tobi bond over their shared fears for their safety. Pica also becomes enmeshed in news reports of the "Westside Slasher", a serial killer who is claiming victims in the neighbourhood, with some of the young men she has photographed being amongst the victims.

About Cauleen Smith

Cauleen Smith is an American born filmmaker and multimedia artist. She is best known for her feature film Drylongso and her experimental works that address the African American identity, specifically the issues facing Black women today. Smith is currently a professor in the Department of Art at the University of California.

Smith was accepted into M.F.A. program at UCLA in 1994. In her second year of the program, Smith decided to shoot a feature-length film titled Drylongso. However, it was against UCLA's rules for film students to shoot feature-length films, "and for good reason, you don’t know what you are doing!" as Smith has said. She was, after some struggles, able to complete the film, and it got a significant amount of attention at the Sundance Film Festival.

T A P E presents SNAPSHOT: a 12-month long season launching in April 2024 which explores the SNAPSHOTS of Black Girlhood found in cinema.

Made possible with the support of the BFI, awarding funds from the National Lottery in order to bring this project to more audiences across the UK.


Cauleen Smith
1 hour 26 minutes
April Barnett, Salim Akil, Toby Smith


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