‘Soy Nero,’ story of immigrant soldiers

“Green card soldiers,” immigrants who join the US military to get their permanent residence and who have fought in many wars, now have a movie about them. “Soy Nero” opens in theaters nationwide on Sept. 29. Directed by acclaimed director Rafi Pitts and starring Johnny Ortiz (“McFarland, USA”) as Nero, the dramatic film centers on a young Mexican immigrant enrolling in US Army to get his green card and, eventually, his citizenship....

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‘Chavela’ and more at OC Film Fiesta

Iconoclasts, legends, revolutionaries, romantics, bohemians and cultural heroes take center stage at the 8th OC Film Fiesta, Orange County’s cinematic celebration of diversity and multicultural heritage that returns to the heart of Santa Ana from Oct. 6 through 15. This year’s festival kicks off on Friday, Oct. 6 with the Orange County premiere screening of “Chavela,” the new documentary by directors Catherine Gund and Daresha Kyi...

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Americans urged to help fight hunger

As starvation threatens the lives of more than 20 million people in Africa, a new coalition of U.S.-based humanitarian organizations has launched a campaign to mobilize Americans in hopes to prevent the worst. Actor George Clooney is lending his voice to the effort. The Global Emergency Response Coalition has launched the Hunger Relief Fund to encourage people to immediately lend a helping hand and save millions of lives. The campaign...

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Small loans vs. poverty

Coffee helped Sandra Flores get through college. Now, after working for a decade in social work, she’s switched to selling cups of joe as a career. For the past year, Flores has been serving up Latin traditional flavors under the brand Azukar Coffee at festivals in and around her natal city of Phoenix. Now she plans to open up an actual cafe and a small loan from the nonprofit Kiva could help her do just that soon. And you could help...

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An urgent message from Colombia’s mountains

The environmental warning of the ancestral Kogi people from Colombia’s isolated sierras keeps reverberating around the world.  It will reach the mountainous community of Topanga in Southern California this weekend. The Kogi’s documentary film “Aluna” will be shown as part of the First Friday Screenings series of the Topanga Film Festival on July 7. The film delivers an urgent message about saving the world from...

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