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In Bed with a Mosquito
18 minutes
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In Bed with a Mosquito

Betty Brassell, a 78-year-old retired telephone operator born and raised in rural Georgia, spends nearly every day - rain or shine - protesting in the streets of New York City, her walker currently emblazoned with “Arrest Cheney.” Although she still holds on to her thick Southern drawl, Betty has called Manhattan’s Lower East Side home for more than 50 years, after escaping an abusive marriage and relocating with her children to New York in 1954. When she retired in the mid-1990s, activism became a new calling, even though she had never voted before. Her weeks soon filled with protests, meetings and campaigns.

But as life tends to do at unexpected moments, it throws Betty a curveball - she injures herself at a large protest and must be
homebound for months. The film documents this incredibly poignant period in Betty’s life. Frustrated that she must stay at
home instead of attend large demonstrations with her friends, Betty begins to reflect on how being an activist has changed her life. And as a major birthday approaches, she is forced for the first time in her life to wonder how much longer she’ll be able to take it to the streets. The documentary follows Betty through several protests and her three-month recovery, leading up to her preparation for a large protest against the war in Iraq.

IN BED WITH A MOSQUITO is an intimate portrait of activism and aging in New York City.
Pricing & Ordering
Buyer Type Format Sale Type Price
Higher Education Institutions DVD Sale $150.00
K-12, Public Libraries & Select Groups DVD Sale $25.00
Non-Theatrical/Educational DVD Rental $150.00
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"A thorough look at anti-war activist Betty Brassell, the film succeeds as a snapshot of an elderly woman who has been enlivened by a renewed purpose centered on anti-war activism. Betty’s insights into aging are revealing and in large part a motivation for her politicization. In Bed with a Mosquito is a great film for an introductory women’s studies class or a political science class that focused on political dissent and 60’s style activism. Because of Betty’s age and her willingness to be an outspoken activist, courses or discussions centered on aging, ageism, anti-war movements and feminism would find the film worthwhile. The length, too, is great for in-class viewing and discussion." - Ciara Healy, Augusta Technical College, Educational Media Reviews Online (EMRO)
"The strength of this film is that it looks beyond Betty’s activism to encompass her current life, living arrangements, health problems, and family relationships as well as a past life that she considers 'the opposite of happy.' IN BED WITH A MOSQUITO serves as useful pedagogical tool within a number of disciplines including women’s studies, social gerontology, sociology, developmental psychology, and cultural studies. " - Miya Narushima, Films for the Feminist Classroom

• Best Documentary Short, CineMini Short Film Festival, 2008
• Trade & Row Documentary Film Festival, 2008
• Flint Film Festival, 2008
• CMJ Film Festival
• Detroit Docs International Film Festival

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