MISSING IN BROOKS COUNTY
MISSING IN BROOKS COUNTY
MISSING IN BROOKS COUNTY
MISSING IN BROOKS COUNTY
AN INTIMATE LOOK AT THE MIGRANT DEATH CRISIS IN A SMALL TEXAS TOWN

MISSING IN BROOKS COUNTY

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BEST SOUTHERN FEATURE - Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival | BEST DOCUMENTARY FEATURE - San Luis Obispo Film Festival

Immigration Studies • Immigration Law • Border Studies • Anthropology • Geography • Human Rights • Latin American Studies • American Studies • Journalism • Forensic Science

Date of Completion: 2020 | Run Time: 81 minutes​​ | Language: English and Spanish with English subtitles | Captions: Yes | Includes: Transcript and Study Guide (Coming Soon) | Directors: Jeff Bemiss and Lisa Molomot | Producers: Jeff Bemiss, Jacob Bricca & Lisa Molomot

70 miles north of the U.S./Mexico border lies Brooks County, Texas - a haunted, inhospitable place where hundreds of migrants go missing every year attempting to circumvent the local Border Patrol checkpoint. MISSING IN BROOKS COUNTY follows the journey of two families who arrive in Brooks County to look for their loved ones, only to find a mystery that deepens at every turn. A gripping drama, it is also a deeply humane portrait of the human rights workers, activists, and law enforcement agents who confront the life-and-death consequences of a broken immigration system.

University of Arizona | Bill Simmons, Director, Human Rights Practice Program
"Even though I have been working on the migrant death issue for 18 years, this film moved me more than anything I have seen. It captures the human element of the families, the crossers, law enforcement, ranchers, and the aid workers all together in a way that I had not seen before.  This film is, in my mind, the definitive artwork on migrant deaths." 

Texas State University | Dr. Kate Spradley, Biological Anthropologist
"The failure to properly investigate and identify the dead at our nation’s border is a culmination of systemic failures at multiple levels, creating a humanitarian crisis. Nothing can convey the reality of the situation in the same way as watching the new documentary Missing in Brooks County." 

The Boston Globe
"This is not the first documentary about the immigration crisis, but it’s one of the most nuanced and disturbing. The filmmakers tell the stories with restraint, emphasizing the injustices, cruelty, and suffering without needless, manipulative exaggeration. They shift deftly among their subjects and present them with empathy and understated irony, building a suspenseful multi-narrative that is part detective story, part family tragedy, part critique of a dysfunctional immigrant policy."

Film International
"A sobering piece of film."

La Estatuilla
"Vital, empathetic and humane."

Unseen Films
"I was deeply affected by this film."

MountainFilm | Suzan Beraza, Festival Director
"MIBC is one of the very best films I've seen in years."

REQUEST A GOOD TALK WITH LISA MOLOMOT

Producer, Co-Director & Cinematographer of MISSING IN BROOKS COUNTY

Lisa Molomot has directed and edited documentaries about the American Southwest in recent years including THE CLEANERS, and SOLEDAD. She has also focused on stories about education. Her award-winning film SCHOOL'S OUT has been an integral part of the movement for providing outdoor education for young children, and her recent short film TEACHING IN ARIZONA is an inside look at the teaching crisis in that state. A recent Fulbright Scholar, she teaches a course at the James E. Rogers School of Law at the University of Arizona where she has worked with the Immigration Law Clinic for the past four years, has taught in the UA Human Rights Practice Graduate Program and is part of a network of human rights faculty.

REQUEST A GOOD TALK WITH JEFF BEMISS

Producer, Co-Director & Cinematographer of MISSING IN BROOKS COUNTY

Jeff Bemiss is an award-winning writer/director who has worked in shorts, features and documentaries, Jeff's work has aired on network television and PBS. He is a graduate of the University of Southern California film school and the L.A. Sanford Meisner Academy. Originally trained in scripted filmmaking, Jeff's film THE BOOK AND THE ROSE was a semi-finalist for the Academy Award for best short film. Jeff shot and directed the award-winning short documentary COACHING COLBURN about a young man with Fragile-X Syndrome, which premiered at the prestigious Big Sky Documentary Film Festival. Jeff is a Connecticut Artist Fellow and a Film Independent Fast Track Fellow. He freelances for disability and social activist clients and teaches film at Trinity College in Hartford, CT.

REQUEST A GOOD TALK WITH JACOB BRICCA

Producer & Editor of MISSING IN BROOKS COUNTY

Jacob Bricca, A.C.Eis an award-winning documentary editor, director, producer, and teacher. He has edited over a dozen feature docs including the international theatrical hit LOST IN LA MANCHA, the New Yorker Films theatrical release CON ARTIST, the Independent Lens Audience Award Winner JIMMY SCOTT: IF ONLY YOU KNEW and the 2016 Sundance Special Jury Award Winner THE BAD KIDS. His directing credits include PUREwhich premiered at the 2008 Berlin International Film Festival and played at festivals from India to Brazil, and FINDING TATANKAwhich premiered at the 2014 Big Sky Documentary Film Festival and screened at 18 venues including the Maysles Documentary Center in New York City. His most recent film, MISSING IN BROOKS COUNTYis co-produced by ITVS in association with Fork Films and Engel Entertainment and will have its broadcast premiere in late 2021 on PBS’s Independent Lens. A member of the American Cinema Editors, his book Documentary Editing: Principles and Practice was published by Focal Press in 2018 and contains interviews with seven of the top American documentary editors working today.  He is an Associate Professor and Head of the Film & Television Production Division at the University of Arizona’s School of Theatre, Film and Television.

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Storytellers featured in MISSING IN BROOKS COUNTY

Eduardo Canales is a retired union organizer who came out of retirement to open the modest South Texas Human Rights Center to deal with the missing migrant crisis. Canales is the only humanitarian help available in Brooks County, and his phone never stops ringing with families desperate to find their missing loved ones.

Dr. Kate Spradley is a biological anthropologist at Texas State University. With her team of graduate students and colleague Krista Latham, Kate is trying to process the scores of bodies which were recently found buried in mass graves in Brooks County.

Omar Roman & Michelle Chinos continue to search for Omar's brother, Homero, who went missing after fleeing from Border Patrol.