- Date/time: May 19th
- Venue: Houston IMPROV
- Address: Houston, TX
Houston, TX — P.E.N.S. (Poetic Energy Needed in Society), one of the most powerful documentaries released in 2021, is on a worldwide film-festival winning streak. The groundbreaking documentary traces the origins of Houston’s spoken word scene and has garnered a staggering 20 independent film awards (and counting). The honors put the documentary’s producer, filmmaker, and diverse cast of spoken word artists prominently in the film industry’s sights. The independent work, filmed entirely on location, is hailed as a one-of-a-kind feature that takes a deep dive into Houston’s poetry community.
Filmmaker Mikell “Fetti” Limbrick and Executive Producer Carlos Wallace, considered two of Houston’s most creative minds, tell the stories through the “pens” of the notable men and women who helped build the spoken word scene from the ground up. The film’s co-stars range from millennial “poetry slam” heavy-hitters to veteran spoken word artists. Stories of struggle, abuse, social justice, feminism, and race relations resonate throughout the documentary. One of the documentary’s most searing pieces, “A Picture in Time,” an homage to the Black Lives Matter movement, won a coveted New York Tri-State International Film Festival award.
Spoken word artist Varion “Se7en the Poet” Howard, a Houston icon and one of the documentaries most celebrated performers, says the film sends an indisputable message to poets all over the country. “No one is doing it like we are in Houston. Not in New York, not in Chicago, not in D.C, not in Los Angeles, nowhere. And I stand by that.” Se7en is also an Associate Producer on P.E.N.S.
Filmmaker Fetti Limbrick recognizes that P.E.N.S. is a celebration of Houston arts and culture and a reminder of the city’s resilience, strength, and perseverance. “Houston has been through a lot over the years. We get hit hard, but they can never count us out. We always come back better and stronger, and our artists always tell the story from the heart. Our poets are our voice. Now the world gets to hear that voice.”
Executive Producer Carlos Wallace prides himself on being a risk-taker. The trailblazer recognized a phenomenal opportunity in the virtually untapped poetry and spoken word market. “The art is undervalued, and the goal is to change that,” says Wallace of the high wattage documentary he helped create.
To learn more about P.E.N.S. and view the trailer, visit the film’s IMDb page or the official Film Freeway website.