Friday, May 7, 2010

Films on Fifth: Day Eight

Tonight's films are being screened in the two largest venues on the schedule, Bax and The Old Stone House. That's because these movies are just released and there is a lot of buzz about them! This is a great time to check them out!

Friday, May 7:

BAX (Brooklyn Arts Exchange): Sugar (7:00 PM)

The success of Latin ball players like Roberto Clemente, Juan Marichal, and Orlando Cepeda are legend but we never hear about the hundreds that fail, those who get lost in the system or are simply unable to handle the pressure of exorbitant signing bonuses or less than welcoming small town environments. In Sugar, writer-directors Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck, whose film Half Nelson from 2006 won numerous awards, have created a film about the problems faced by young Latinos in attempting to make the jump from the comforts of their home town environment to the major leagues. It is not just a movie about baseball but about what is important in life.

20-year-old Miguel Santos (Algenis Perez Soto) is nicknamed Sugar - he says because he is sweet on the ladies but others have different opinions. Sugar is a pitcher at an American baseball training academy in the Dominican Republic whose recently developed knuckle curve ball puts him ahead of the pack. He is the idol of his family and the children in his home town but must compete with hundreds of others like himself for an invitation to a minor league Spring Training camp.

The Old Stone House

At age 9, Priscilla, an adorable yet precocious little girl, tells her single-father, Jesse,: “I am going to become a rapper and fulfill your dreams of succeeding in the music business.” Moved by Priscilla’s passion and impressed with her natural talent and undeniable charisma, he begins to teach her all he knows about rapping. In the four years that follow there is no question that rapping has brought Priscilla closer to her estranged father, and that her success has made him proud. Before our eyes, this father-daughter duo go from a one-bedroom shelter in Harlem to a 4 bedroom apartment, from food stamps to shopping sprees, from rapping on street corners to sold out night clubs, and from sneaking under train turnstiles without the $2 fare to spare to being driven around in tinted SUV’s. It is further undeniable that Jesse has been reborn, from looking at old photos and bitterly reflecting on how he never was given the respect he deserved in the music business as a rapper himself to finding his own voice and self-respect as his daughter’s overzealous manager. But in the efforts to make her dad proud, Priscilla struggles to remain a child and finds herself trapped in a world of people twice her size and four times her age and doesn't know who to trust. Jesse himself is caught between wanting to protect his daughter’ innocence and exploiting her raw talent to fulfill his deferred dream. All they know is that the ride has just begun.

Aunt Suzie's - Sparrow 08 (9:30 PM)

Perennial Presidential Candidate "Sparrow" shares his wit and wisdom in his 2008 run for the White House. If you can make it to see the film, the clip below is just a glimpse of what is in store for you:

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