River City Drumbeat

95 mins.
Directed by Anne Flatte & Marlon Johnson

Available through Thursday, August 20.

  • Ticket price: $12 for viewing within a 3-day rental period.
  • How to watch: Available to watch through the Vimeo app for Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, and Android TV, and on IOS and Android devices, or through your internet browser.

Questions about Virtual Cinema? Technical issues? Check our FAQ page. When you watch Virtual Cinema films, you provide direct financial support to Amherst Cinema during our temporary closure. Thank you.

Click below to watch a conversation between directors Anne Flatte and Marlon Johnson and Amherst Cinema's George Myers, recorded live on Thursday, August 13.

RIVER CITY DRUMBEAT is a powerful story of music, love, and legacies set in the American South.

Edward "Nardie" White devoted his life to leading the African-American drum corps he co-founded with Zambia Nkrumah in Louisville, Kentucky three decades ago. Together they inspired youth from their West Louisville neighborhood to thrive by connecting them with the art and cultural traditions of their African ancestors.

Now Albert Shumake, whose destiny was shaped by the drumline, must take up the mantle for the next generation. Meanwhile, student drummers Imani, Jailen, and Emily navigate adolescence and life changes.

RIVER CITY DRUMBEAT follows this creative community of mentors, parents, and youth making their way in a world where systemic forces raise obstacles to fulfilling their dreams.

"Though the movie does include footage of drum performances, it doesn’t move at the clip of sticks on snares. Instead, the film listens for this community’s heartbeat, finding its steady pulse just as expected: healthy and strong." Teo Bugbee. A New York Times Critic's Pick!