Filmmaker Caroline Rumley embarks on a quest to discover more about her family’s past and its connection to the tainted history of the American South.
It begins with an encounter with a Black acquaintance, when she becomes aware of the inappropriateness of her dog’s name. Rumley’s young daughter liked the sound of the name Dixie but it’s also a nickname for the southern states of the U.S. and a clear reference to the time when these states formed a confederacy that seceded from the rest of the country in order to continue using slave labor.
The black-and-white archive photos and films of the family merge seamlessly with black-and-white shots of the landscapes of Mississippi and South Louisiana, evoking a family past that is tightly bound up with the tainted history of America’s southern states.
Dir. Caroline Rumley - 15min - 2020 - USA
"How much of who you are is where you come from? When my teen-aged daughter asked if she really was related to Robert E. Lee, it was time to fully look into it. Together we visited archives, towns, and sites in South Louisiana and Mississippi that my grandmother had mentioned in a long letter she wrote back in the 1970s, filming what resonated. This was just before Covid landed in the States and things ground to a halt. I spent that isolated spring writing the script and doing the voice-over, locating archival and home movie footage, making color choices, and finally editing and creating the sparse music score. Dixie had its world premiere in South Louisiana - at the New Orleans Film Festival." - Caroline Rumley
"a dreamy black-and-white journey through the film’s author's own family history." - Talking Shorts
"evoking a family past that is tightly bound up with the tainted history of America’s southern states" - IDFA