SYNOPSIS: In the late 70s and early 80s, Los Sures was one of the poorest neighborhoods in New York City. In fact, it had been called the worst ghetto in America. Diego Echeverria’s film skillfully represents the challenges of its time: drugs, gang violence, crime, abandoned real estate, racial tension, single-parent homes, and inadequate local resources. The complex portrait also celebrates the vitality of this largely Puerto Rican and Dominican community, showing the strength of their culture, their creativity, and their determination to overcome a desperate situation. Beautifully restored just in time for the 30th anniversary of the premiere at the New York Festival, this documentary is a priceless piece of New York City history.
LOGLINE: The life and work of Barney Rosset, the late founder of Grove Press and the Evergreen Review, is laid bare by family and friends as they enter his home and office to interpret one of his last and most personal works: a giant, abstract mural.
SYNOPSIS: Right by Astor Place in Lower Manhattan, and perhaps unbeknownst to its many passersby, rested until recently the office and home of the late Barney Rosset, a WWII veteran, American film distributor, and the founder of the notorious Grove Press and Evergreen Review. Maintained by his widow Astrid Myers Rosset, it was an old yet vibrant space that was decked out with paintings and piles of the books and magazine issues he had published over several decades. Most significant of all was a vast abstract mural in gold, blue, white, and red, featuring crevices filled with paraphernalia sourced from around the world. One by one, a colorful variety of artists, publishers, writers, professors, filmmakers, composers, lawyers, and museum curators came through to interpret his last and most personal work of art. Along the way they offered commentary and memories, painting yet another massive image of a man who, despite an unwavering belief in the American democratic system, demonstrated anarchic and maverick sensibilities as the American publisher of Lady Chatterly’s Lover, Tropic of Cancer, Naked Lunch, and The Autobiography of Malcolm X, among hundreds of other subversive, radical and vital literary works.
LOGLINE: Jacob M. Appel is a recognized professor, doctor, lawyer, bioethicist, and published creative writer. But despite his eccentric, unassuming intellect and wealth of knowledge and nuanced opinions, the man is as humble as he is accomplished.
SYNOPSIS: Jacob M. Appel is a man of many titles. With 10 degrees from various institutions, including Harvard Law School and Columbia Medical School, he is a professor, a doctor, a lawyer, a bioethicist, and a published author of short stories, poems, plays and novels. The only reason you may not have heard of him is because the man is as humble as he is accomplished. Director Jon Stahl relies on interviews from his teachers, friends, and family to create an adept presentation of an unassuming intellectual who is filled to the brim with warmth and eccentricity.
LOGLINE: A Romanian woman is snatched off the streets of London in broad daylight, trafficked through a series of pop-up brothels in the UK, and subjected to physical, psychological, and sexual abuse. Based on a true story.
SYNOPSIS: A Romanian living in London, Ana (Anca Dumitra) is a part-time nursing student and cleaning lady, until one day she is grabbed off the street in broad daylight. Threatened with the life of her mother, she is flown out to Northern Ireland and trafficked through a series of pop-up brothels in the United Kingdom as a sex slave. She soon becomes known to paying customers as a noncompliant girl and survives physical, sexual, and psychological abuse for a year. Authorities (including Downton Abbey’s Allen Leech) track her movements and those of other girls and women like her, but have no case unless someone comes forth to testify against their captors, who exercise brutal and dehumanizing psychological control over them.