Connections: The OLLI Documentary Film Series

Connections logo

Connections: The OLLI Documentary Film Series

CONNECTIONS: The documentary film series is an opportunity for OLLI students and guests to connect with many of today’s pressing issues via the penetrating perspectives of contemporary documentary films. As the name implies, the themes for the films will showcase the CONNECTIONS humans have with one another, with our environment (including technology), and with other species that share our planet.

All CONNECTIONS film screenings and discussions take place online via Zoom. Following the film, participants can engage in a Zoom chat with the moderator and one another about the film’s content and impact, as well as raise questions for further exploration.

Winter 2021:

  • The Social Dilemma • Tuesday, Jan. 19 • 2:30-4:30 pm

The Social Dilemma blends documentary investigation and narrative drama to reveal how social media companies are causing unintended harm to people and society. Expert testimony from tech whistle-blowers exposes how the services Big-Tech provides (search engines, social networks, instant information, etc.), lure us to stay glued to our screens.

  • Jim Allison: Breakthrough • Tuesday, Feb. 16 • 2:30-4:30 pm

Jim Allison: Breakthrough tells the compelling story of one warmhearted, stubborn man’s visionary quest to find a cure for cancer. It is a tribute to an unconventional superhero — a pioneering, harmonica-playing immunologist who triumphed over a skeptical medical establishment to save innumerable lives around the world.

Spring 2021:

  • Athlete A • Tuesday, March 9 • 2:30-4:30 pm

Athlete A, named for the then-anonymous gymnast whose complaint led to the first public disclosure of decades of abuse by Dr. Larry Nassar, reveals the toxic culture of USA Gymnastics that protected the brand, not the young female gymnasts. The film follows a team of reporters from The Indianapolis Star as they investigate claims of abuse at USA Gymnastics.

  • Film TBA • Tuesday, March 30  


  • $12 per film: OLLI Gold Members
  • $15 per film: Silver Members & General Admission
    No refunds on CONNECTIONS. For information or to register, call 941-309-5111.


Julie Cotton headshot

Julie Cotton, a member of the OLLI Advisory Council’s Strategic Program Planning Committee, is the coordinator and host of this series. Julie has a doctorate in Human Development and is a former organizational consultant and executive coach. She is an aficionado of documentary films and a skilled facilitator of group conversations.

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