Monday, September 13, 2010

Newark's Independent Film Festival in collaboration with Art in the Park

It's romantic! It's entertaining! It's community-based/organized. It's a cultural smorgasborg! And it's FREE!!

Newark's Independent Film Festival is LIVE every Wednesday evening from 5-10pm in Washington Park, which is the cute little grassy enclave on Broad St. directly in front of the Newark Museum and Newark Library.

Treat yourself to a piece of one-of-a-kind art/jewelry/accessories from the artists that are vendors there. Have a bite to eat and have a seat or, if you've come prepared to lounge. lay out a blanket and watch an international film under the stars! There isn't a more brilliant way to spend a Wednesday evening!


BREAKING UP IS HARD TO DO (an audience favorite)
Vince and Shonda have come to the proverbial end of their ropes with one another. Set in Atlanta during the 2008 Presidential Election season, Breaking Up Is Hard To Do is the touching story of what happens when two people feel they have nothing more to give to a relationship. A funny and intimate look at how people fall in love and what it takes to stay there, Breaking Up Is Hard To Do touches on the reality of the outside forces that can make or break a relationship. They say the truth will set you free, but when Shonda and Vince are armed with the truth, will they use it to set themselves free for once and for all?


Rizwan Khan, a Muslim from the Borivali section of Mumbai, suffers from Asperger's syndrome, a form of high-functioning autism that complicates socialization. The adult Rizwan marries a Hindu single mother, Mandira, in San Francisco. After 9/11, Rizwan is detained by authorities at LAX who mistake his disability for suspicious behavior. Following his arrest, he meets Radha, a therapist who helps him deal with his situation and his affliction. Rizwan then begins a journey to meet US President Obama to clear his name.

Martial arts meet Brazilian history in an original mythic story.
Local Afro-Brazilian myth springs to life in the entertaining "Besouro," that rare martial arts film that has an engrossing story to tell and a social point to make. Here the focus is on Capoeira players, who, lead by the legendary hero Besouro, combine acrobatic dancing and fighting to liberate themselves from the oppression of a white plantation owner.

Poignant tale of a woman's journey of self-discovery, January 22, 2009. "Brick Lane" is based on Monica Ali's controversial novel of the same title, and tells the story of a Bangladeshi Muslim woman, Nazneen [Tannishta Chatterjee] who was married off at 17 by her father to a much older man living in London. Nazneen leaves behind her beloved sister, and there is also the haunting specter of her mother's suicide when she was a young girl. Nazneen's sister keeps up an active correspondence with her, indicating a life of adventure and excitement, in stark contrast to Nazneen's own repressed life - one of monotony and drudgery, of a loveless union with a self-absorbed man, and of caring for her two daughters. Nazneen's way of coping with her humdrum life is to quote her deceased mother: "Life is to be endured."
Things change when a new neighbor moves in next door.

UP FROM THE BOTTOMS: The Search for the American Dream
Tells the story of the massive migration of African Americans from the rural south to the prosperous north during the World War II years and beyond. They left behind the legacy of slavery and segregation and set out to find the american dream. The voice of Cicely Tyson guides us through these touching, thoughtful and often funny stories as told by fifteen residents of Muskegon, Michigan. During the late 1930’s through the 1960’s, factory jobs in the north were abundant while farming jobs in the south were disappearing. It started as a trickle but once word got back to families in the south, it turned into a flood of people uprooting their lives and moving to the land of prosperity, the industrial north.

What do Hugh Masakela, Celia Cruz and James Brown have in common? While it’s highly likely they all got on the good foot a time or two, that’s not it. In 1974, they were among the musical acts who returned to their African roots to perform in a 12-hour, three night long concert in Zaire. Soul Power is the documentary about this concert, Zaire ’74, that was held in conjunction with the “Rumble in the Jungle” fight between Muhammad Ali and George Fraser. This epic film will be shown at the Detroit Film Theatre on August 7, 8, and 9. Much acclaim has been made about the fight which was chronicled in When We Were Kings. Director Jeffrey Levy-Hinte wanted Soul Power to be a distinctly different experience.

Sugar follows the story of Miguel Santos, a.k.a. Sugar, a Dominican pitcher from San Pedro De MacorĂ­s, struggling to make it to the big leagues and pull himself and his family out of poverty. Playing professionally at a baseball academy in the Dominican Republic, Miguel finally gets his break at age 19 when he advances to the United States’ minor league system; but when his play on the mound falters, he begins to question the single-mindedness of his life’s ambition.

The movie is about Sita, the Hindu Goddess from the epic "The Ramayana", who accompanies Lord Rama on a 14 year exile in forest. Sita is abducted by Ravana, the ruler of Lanka. This movie deals with the relationship of Rama and Sita.

From the vantage point director Pete Travis turns his attention from high-profile political assassinations to the high-risk talks that ushered in the end of apartheid while securing the release of Nelson Mandela in this historical drama Read More...starring William Hurt, Chiwetel Ejiofer, Mark Strong, and Johnny Lee Miller. The time is the late 1980s, a crucial period in the history of South Africa. President P.W. Botha is hanging onto power by a thread as the African National Congress (ANC) takes up arms against apartheid and the country tumbles towards insurrection. A British mining concern called Consolidated Gold is convinced that their interests would be better served in a stable South Africa, and quietly dispatches Michael Young, their head of public affairs, to open an unofficial dialogue between the bitter rivals. Assembling a reluctant yet brilliant team to pave the way to reconciliation by confronting obstacles that initially seem insurmountable, Young places his trust in ANC leader Thabo Mbeki and Afrikaner philosophy professor Willie Esterhuyse. It is their empathy that will ultimately serve as the catalyst for change by proving more powerful than the terrorist bombs that threaten to disrupt the peaceful dialogue. As the story shifts between Mandela's jail cell, Botha's chambers, ANC headquarters, and a rented car occupied by a British bureaucrat, the prospect for peace becomes more than just a distant hope.

This biographical tribute to an icon of Latina music evokes the talent, independence, and inner drive of a woman who helped develop a music style present in today's popular culture. A songbird of the Havana streets, the young Cruz charmed her neighbors with the passion and uniqueness of her voice, which incorporated the sounds of street vendors. "Her father heard thunder. Her cousins heard the call of the sea. Her neighbors heard a hummingbird." The text records her early life in an overcrowded household but also emphasizes her love for learning and her classical training, her devotion to her birth country, and her international fame. Full-page illustrations in bold jewel tones evoke the warmth and swirl of the salsa sound she created. An author's note summarizes Cruz's personal and professional life. Like the sweetness of her voice, this tribute is pure azĂșcar. It fills a gap in materials for music teachers and is a solid addition for all libraries.

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