Synopsis: A documentary on radical left-wing activist turned FBI informant, Brandon Darby.
Genre: Documentary
Director(s): Jamie Meltzer
Production: Music Box Films
  2 wins.
Rotten Tomatoes:
81 min

We turn now to a

story out of Austin, Texas,

that's shocked social justice

activists nation wide.

Brandon Darby has admitted

to wearing recording devices

and wearing a transmitter

embedded in his belt.

He's expected to testify in the

trial of two Texas activists

who were arrested on charges of making

and possessing Molotov cocktails.

Two Texas men are charged with plotting

to attack police with Molotov cocktails.

David McKay and Bradley Crowder

could face up to ten years in prison.

To say that Brandon Darby

didn't give those guys a fair chance

It's a travesty what he did.

It's a travesty what he did.

Where am I looking?


Look straight into the camera.

It's not looking

straight at me.

You're looking

straight at it right now.

- Am I?

- Yep, yeah.

- Tell me when.

- We're ready. We're rolling.

I'm gonna start over.

I'm sorry, man.

I've received a lot

of direct death threats.

I've had to go to trial

and testify

against someone

sending me death threats.

People put images of me

with "kill him" on the Internet.

The U.S. Attorney's office

offered me

the witness protection program,

but this is my home.

This group, they use Molotov cocktails,

they threaten violence.

No it doesn't work, man.

Because it's not about them,

it's about the whole f***ing Left

and their support

of these f***ers.

Okay, let's just get you,

just talk, speak your mind.

- Okay...

- And just try to focus on this...

- and just tell it to us.

- Okay, go ahead, man.

This is my home.

I'm not going to leave.

(helicopter blades whirring)

as the founder of the New Orleans-based

group Common Ground Relief,

which he helped start after

Hurricane Katrina.

How's this?

- What is that?

- Interviewer:

Where do I look?

- Always in the camera.

- Into that thing?


One second for the focus.

All right,

I'm ready.

My name is Brandon Darby and I work

with the Common Ground Collective

in New Orleans, Louisiana.

We're in the Lower Ninth Ward.

We've been here between

four and five months,

working with... with people from

around the country, and with locals.

To get water and food

and medicine, medical care...

The people here

were left to die.

What I saw was awful.

You know?

If I'd had

an appropriate weapon

I would have,

I would have attacked my government

for what they were doing to people.

I honestly would have.

Much of New Orleans is flooded,

and now we're having to deal with it.

Newsman 2:

It's just this incredible misery.

We were at the New Orleans

Convention Center today...

You turn the TV

on and you see these images,

and you're like,

what's going on?

...with their babies,

literally living in raw sewage.

It was like wow,

this is f***ed up.

You know, this is wrong.

How could this happen?


Just a horrible scene down there.

And my friend's there, and I couldn't

get him to leave before the storm.

I had no idea

if he was alive or dead.

And it bothered me...


'Cause you can't really know the

guy and not, not care about...

you know not like the guy, you know,

like he's one of those people.

I began to call people,

and I said hey,

"You know, we should go get King,

you know?"

We're talking and he says,

man, let's go get him.

So we arrive.

We had gone through

what used to be a neighborhood.

And we saw

dead bodies everywhere.

I wasn't even

ready to deal with it.

Some people had returned,

to look for loved ones.

There was a guy whose dad

stayed in a yellow house.

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Jamie Meltzer

Jamie Meltzer is an American movie and documentary film director. He has made "True Conviction", "Off the Charts: The Song-Poem Story", "Welcome to Nollywood", "La Caminata" (a short film), and the feature-length documentary film "Informant". He teaches documentary film production in the Art Department of Stanford University, as part of the MFA Program in Documentary Film. "True Conviction" (2017), a feature length documentary, follows a group of exonerated ex-prisoners who start a detective agency, work to rebuild their lives, and struggle to fix the criminal justice system. The film was awarded a Special Jury Mention at the 2017 Tribeca Film Festival. "Informant" (2012) a feature-length documentary film that investigates the turbulent journey of Brandon Darby, a radical leftist activist turned FBI informant turned right-wing Tea Party activist. It premiered at the 2012 San Francisco International Film Festival,"With uncommon restraint, Meltzer delivers a fascinating study that transcends political chest beating. Informant raises the possibility of fluid truth in a system addicted to false binaries." The film won the Best Documentary Jury Award at the Austin Film Festival in October 2012."La Caminata" (2009) is a short film exploring the efforts of a small Mexican town to combat the migration of their community to the U.S. The town, El Alberto, puts on a weekly tourist event called the Caminata, where they simulate a nighttime "crossing" of the border, complete with balaclava-clad coyotes and simulated border patrol in hot pursuit. The film played at film festivals in 2009, including the AFI Silverdocs Festival and the True/False Film Festival. "Welcome to Nollywood" (2007) is a documentary about the explosive phenomenon of Nigerian movies. It aired on PBS as part of the AfroPop Series in 2008. "Off the Charts: The Song-Poem Story" (2003), an hour-long documentary, marks his feature film debut. It played at festivals worldwide, and was screened on PBS' Independent Lens series in 2003. "Pegasus" (1998), a short 16 mm film made while he was a graduate student at San Francisco State University, chronicles the adventures of a gay motorcycle club on a joy ride in Marin County. This film was screened at the 1998 San Francisco International Lesbian & Gay Film Festival as well as other venues. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "Informant" STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 30 Jan. 2023. <>.

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