BIBA! ONE ISLAND 879 VOTES follows the rallies and debates of Trenton Conner and Henry San Nicolas in their battle for control over the Pacific island and US commonwealth, Tinian. Along the way we learn about Tinian’s historic and geopolitical significance as the launch point for the Enola Gay in World War II and, now, the home of the Voice of America broadcasting towers, sending pro-democracy propaganda into China and North Korea. Vital to see during this election year, Ben Bloodwell’s debut feature asks us to examine our own definitions of democratic politics.
Three high school boys are suspended on trumped-up graffiti charges. Despite never having read it, they resolve to use the plot of A Catcher in the Rye as a guide to post-school life and, more specifically, to losing their virginity. Crude hilarity ensues in this uproarious endeavor by first-time director Andrew Edison.
Set along the Texas-Mexico border in the late 1930’s, this is a reminder that vengeance is not solely the Lord’s.
Love, lies, memories, Proust, and sex go hand in hand in Cristian Jimenez’s BONSÁI, a melancholic story about college sweethearts Emilia and Julio as told by Julio in a fake novel that he’s writing to his new girlfriend Blanca. Juicy, eh? By BONSÁI’s finish, you’ll feel the same sweet, nostalgic sadness present at the end of a good character-driven book.
Olivia is a con artist who will do anything for her 10-year-old son, Bobby, but giving him the best in life with no money coming in isn’t easy. Filmed in Oklahoma and reminiscent of a modern-day Bonnie & Clyde crossed with THELMA & LOUISE starring Milla Jovovich, Marcia Cross and Bill Pullman, BRINGING UP BOBBY is the directorial debut of award-winning Dutch actress Famke Janssen.
In BROOKLYN BROTHERS BEAT THE BEST, we get to root for the “undermoose”: Alex, who’s recently been dumped by his girlfriend, his band and his employer. Jim, a fan of Alex’s music, convinces him to begin a journey across the nation on a battle of the bands tour, where he finds love and … great cameos from Jason Ritter, Melissa Leo, Wilmer Valderrama and Andrew McCarthy. BROOKLYN BROTHERS BEATS THE BEST celebrates creativity and the healing power of friendship.
BROOKLYN CASTLE is a documentary about I.S. 318–an inner-city school where more than 65 percent of students are from homes with incomes below the federal poverty level–that also happens to have the best junior high school chess team in the country. (If Albert Einstein were to join the team, he’d only rank fifth.) Chess has transformed the school from one cited in 2003 as a “school in need of improvement” to one of New York City’s best. But a series of recession-driven public school budget cuts now threaten to undermine those hard-won successes.