Against the backdrop of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s, a young San Francisco film student and Chinatown resident turned his lens onto his community. Fast forward 50 years, Harry Chuck's now archival material portrays a divided community's struggles for self-determination. Weaving together never-before-seen footage and photographs, Chinatown Rising spans three generations in its portrait of the historic neighborhood in transition.
From the 1960s–1980s the once quiet streets of Chinatown were rattled by the fight for bilingual education, tenants’ rights, affordable housing, and an ethnic studies curriculum. These struggles are chronicled through current-day interviews as Chinatown’s organizers and leaders of the '60s return to the battles for social justice and equality of their youth that would shape their community and nation.