A four-century struggle for repair and atonement 

"Thank you for making such a powerful film that's both centered on reparations but also this idea of radical solidarity."

Glenn Harris, President - Race Forward
Synopsis: 

Reparations explores the four-century struggle to seek repair and atonement for slavery in the United States. Black and Asian Americans reflect on the legacy of slavery, the inequities that persists, and the critical role that solidarity between communities has in acknowledging and addressing systemic racism in America.

This story is told by Black and Asian Americans who believe that our collective liberation can only be achieved by standing with one another. Reparations seeks to raise awareness of the Black reparations struggle and how vital it is to healing this country.

Reviews

"Reparations provides great storytelling and documentary elements to hold honest conversations about the legacy of slavery and how systemic racism continues to endure in America.”

Maria Palacio, Revolution Me Film Festival Director

"Jon Osaki made a fantastic film which was perfect for our Redress Conference and so timely to advocate for the passage of House Resolution 40."

Alice Murata, Professor Emeritus - Northeastern Illinois University

“This powerful film explores the history of slavery in the United States and how (white) American wealth was built on the backs of enslaved African Americans. This film should be seen in classrooms around the country.”

Nina Streich, Executive Director – Global Peace Film Festival
Director's Commentary: 

As a Japanese American, I can vividly remember that day that my father and mother received the formal apology and reparations check from the United States government. They were both unjustly imprisoned during World War II for being Japanese and after a long, often contentious debate in America, this country eventually acknowledged the injustice of incarcerating an entire community based solely on their race. The modest, but meaningful attempt to repair the economic and emotional damage inflicted on Japanese Americans was tremendously healing for my parents and the nearly 120,000 others who were rounded-up and banished without charges or a trial.

For Black Americas, no such gesture has been offered for the atrocity of slavery in America. While the fight for Japanese American reparations was at times acrimonious, initial opponents of the bill, such as President Ronald Reagan, would eventually soften their positions and ultimately did what was right. However, after centuries of seeking repair and atonement for enslaving Black people in America, the visceral resistance to acknowledging the multi-generational harm from slavery continues to perpetuate deep seeded wounds in this country.

Asian Americans have often had a complex relationship with the Black community. While there have been instances of solidarity which have led to tremendous progress towards lifting up the collective power of communities of color, there have also been acts of racism towards each other. At a time in America when anti-Asian hate is sweeping across the country, there are Asian Americans who view this moment as an opportunity stand up for a historic struggle which Black people have fought with few allies.

Reparations explores the four-century struggle to seek economic justice for slavery in America. This story is told by Black Americans as well as Asian Americans who believe that our collective liberation can only be achieved by standing with one another. Instead of being complicit in the systemic racism that continues to ravage the Black community, Reparations seeks to educate other communities on the Black reparations struggle and how vital it is to healing this country.