SFFilm Saturday: Roku, Chromecast, and Oakland students

Before I go into the one movie I managed to see Saturday, I’d like to offer two alternate ways to bring a SFFilm Festival movie from the Internet to your television.

I can tell you how to get a SFFilm movie onto your TV if you have a Roku or a Chromecast. Unfortunately, I don’t own FireTV or Apple TV devices, so I can’t give you help with these.

Soon after you bought a ticket for a film, you should have received a Confirmation email from community@sffilm.org. Open the email, then scroll down a bit to make sure it’s for the right movie. Actually, SFFilm doesn’t officially support Chromecast, but I’ve discovered that it works.


  1. Install the SFFilm channel if you haven’t already, then open that channel (I’m assuming you basically know how to use your Roku).
  2. Return to the confirmation email and scroll down a bit more to the bright green box with the 9-digit number.
  3. Using the Roku remote, select Enter Code, then enter that 9-digit number. Then click Submit.


  1. Turn on the TV.
  2. Open your confirmation email on your Android phone or device.
  3. Scroll down and click the bright green box. That will bring up another webpage.
  4. Scroll down again and click on the smaller, bright green PLAY box to start the movie.
  5. As the movie starts on your phone, click the Chromecast icon (if you have Chromecast, you know how it looks).
  6. The movie will go from your phone to your TV.

B Homeroom

Peter Nicks’ latest cinema verite documentary follows politically active students in an Oakland public high school (or maybe several schools; that’s not clear). For the most part, you watch the burning certainty of radical youth, but their causes are right. These young activists want police out of their school, and no more budget cuts. COVID comes in in the last third, and it becomes an interesting look back at what was happening a year ago.

Director Peter Nicks is this year’s recipient of the George Gund III Craft of Cinema Award. The film will be followed by a conversation between Nicks and Executive Director Anne Lai.

The documentary is followed by a previously-recorded Q&A with director Pete Nicks, sound designer Gaby Arvizu, and two of the students in the film, Dwayne Davis and Jessica Roams. SFFilm’s Rod Armstrong moderated the discussion.

Here are some highlights, altered for brevity and clarity:

  • Nicks: I wanted to tell the narrative of an American city in hundreds of conversations. We began with the emotions of young people of color. We didn’t know the pandemic would unfold. Or George Floyd. We spent a lot of time in the school.
  • On the process of shooting: You cast as you go. It takes months. We identified the kids to cover, the ones who seem like possible leaders.
  • Dwayne: I guess I took I took initiative to represent the students.
  • Jessica: I lost a lot of friends to gun violence. I started to get depressed. But I love organizing because it helps future generations.