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On May 17, 1968, three Catholic priests, a nurse, an artist and four others walked into the Catonsville, Maryland draft board office, grabbed selective service records, and burned them with homemade napalm. INVESTIGATION OF A FLAME is an intimate look at this unlikely band - dubbed the Catonsville Nine - who broke the law in a poetic act of civil disobedience. The publicity frmo their ensuing trial helped galvanize an American public that was become increasingly disillusioned with the Vietnam War. The film explores this Sixties protest within the context of these extremely different times: times in which foes of Middle East peace, abortion, and technology resort to violence to access the public imagination. Lynne Sachs has combined volatile, long-unseen, archival footage with a series of informal interviews with Daniel and Philip Berrigan, Howard Zinn, John Hogan, Tom Lewis, and Marjorie and Tom Melville. The meditative result encourages viewers to ponder the contemporary relevance of civil disobedience, and the implications of personal sacrifice for the greater good.

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MCR564 Investigation of a Flame DVD (2001/Lynne Sachs) $24.98