Conscience Point

A golf club built atop a sacred burial ground triggers a woman’s relentless fight to protect her tribe from the onslaughts of development.

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Independent Lens
83:00:00 minutes
Funding Initiative
Series and Special Projects
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Treva Wurmfeld

Treva Wurmfeld's feature directorial debut, Shepard & Dark, about playwright Sam Shepard, made its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2012 and won top awards at the Woodstock Int. Film Festival, the Cleveland Int. Film Festival and the Florida Film Festival. That year, Wurmfeld was included in Filmmaker Magazines 25 new Show more faces of Independent Film. Shepard & Dark was an official selection at the Cannes Film Festival and Wurmfeld was nominated for the Camera d'Or prize. Shepard & Dark was released by Music Box films in the Fall of 2013. Previously Wurmfeld shot and produced for the Emmy Award winning A&E series Intervention and wrote and directed the short film, Oyster in 2007. More recently, she produced and directed a short documentary, The Hama Hama Way. She received her MFA from Hunter College, in 2006. Show less


Julianna Brannum

Julianna Brannum is a documentary filmmaker based in Austin, TX. Her first film, The Creek Runs Red, was selected to air on PBS’s national prime-time series, Independent Lens. She later co-produced a feature-length documentary with Emmy Award-winning producer, Stanley Nelson for PBS’s We Shall Remain– a 5-part series on Native American history. The Show more episode, Wounded Knee, chronicled the siege of Wounded Knee, SD in 1973 led by the American Indian Movement and had its premiere at the Sundance Film Festival and later won the ABC News VideoSource Award for Outstanding Use of Archival in a Film. Ms. Brannum was selected as a Sundance Institute/Ford Foundation Fellow and has been awarded grants from the Sundance Institute’s Native Initiative, National Geographic, Women in Film, ITVS, the Oklahoma Humanities Council, Vision Maker Media, and the Sundance Documentary Fund for her public television documentary LaDonna Harris: Indian 101. She was also awarded a fellowship from the Rockefeller Foundation and the Tribeca Film Institute in support of the film. The film aired nationally on PBS in November 2015 and was Executive Produced by Johnny Depp. Ms. Brannum most recently served as Series Producer on the PBS series, Native America, produced by Providence Pictures. This epic, 4-part series focuses on the civilizations of the Americas. Native America will air nationally on PBS in Fall 2018. Ms. Brannum has also produced programs for Discovery Channel, HGTV, DIY, A&E, and Bravo and is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma where she was awarded the 2008 Distinguished Alumni Award for the College of Arts and Sciences and is a member of the Quahada band of the Comanche Nation of Oklahoma. Show less

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Charles Certain

Charles Certain is a Shinnecock Montauk Native residing on the Shinnecock Reservation in South Hampton, New York. Owner of Certain Media, Inc. For the last 11 years he has worked as a videographer and editor for the town of Southampton. His footage appears regularly on the local government cable station. He also documents all the important events on the Show more reservation, including the famous annual Shinnecock Pow Wow. When he isn't documenting the world around him he is playing music and running his audio and video studio. He is excited to be a Co-Producer on Conscience Point, helping to tell the story of the rich long island indigenous history and the personal stories of the people who make up South Hampton and the Shinnecock Nation. Show less

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The Film

In Long Island’s Hamptons — one of the wealthiest zip codes in the United States — lies the impoverished Shinnecock reservation. Its namesake, the exclusive Shinnecock Hills Golf Club, is about to host one of the sport’s highest-profile events: the U.S. Open. As thousands of golf enthusiasts, sports journalists, and selfie-seeking tourists descend on the Hamptons in the summer of 2018, Becky Hill-Genia, a 56-year-old Shinnecock, would like the throngs of visitors to understand one thing: The world-renowned golf course’s celebrated slopes and sand traps were literally carved out of a sacred Shinnecock burial ground.

Conscience Point looks back on Becky’s relentless, impassioned, years-long battle to protect the land and her tribe’s cultural heritage from the ravages of development and displacement. In the run-up to the U.S. Open, the film depicts the uneven fight that pits Becky against Town Hall boosters and other local opponents — including, most formidably, former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg, an avid golfer whose 22,000-square-foot mansion sits on 35 acres overlooking the club green.