BAMcinemaFest, has announced the lineup for its 2019 edition, which includes a handful of Latino titles in their world or New York premieres: De lo mío by Diana Peralta—selected as closing night of the festival, Caballerango by Juan Pablo González, The Infiltrators by Cristina Ibarra and Alex Rivera, and Premature by Rashaad Ernesto Green.
Sibling bonds are both rekindled and tested in the achingly alive feature debut from Peralta. Rita (Sasha Merci) and Carolina (Darlene Demorizi), two high-spirited sisters raised in New York, travel to the Dominican Republic to reunite with their estranged brother Dante (Héctor Aníbal) and to clean out their grandparents’ old home before it is sold and knocked down. As they rifle through the remnants of their family’s legacy, shared joys, pains, and traumas resurface that they must confront once and for all. Sensitively attuned to the intricacies of sibling relationships—from the playful teasing to the way a favorite childhood song can trigger an impromptu dance party—De lo mío is a richly human look at cherishing the past while learning to let go.
Death haunts a close-knit Mexican community in the evocatively spare, slow-burn documentary spellbinder Caballerango by González. With a remarkably unobtrusive camera, the director chronicles the everyday rituals and rhythms of life in a small, struggling rural town in the state of Jalisco where daily conversation turns again and again to one topic: the recent suicide of a young caballerango (horse wrangler) whose death, we soon learn, is only the latest in a rash of suicides that have plagued the village. Finding stirring poignancy in seemingly quotidian moments, Caballerango is a transcendentally sad and beautiful reflection on vanishing traditions and disappearing lives.
Through an electrifying mix of documentary interviews and narrative reenactment, The Infiltrators brings to life the incredible true story of the National Immigrant Youth Alliance, a group of young undocumented activists who, in 2012, embarked on a mission of extraordinary daring: allowing themselves to be arrested by ICE in order to infiltrate a for-profit Florida detention center and help rescue fellow undocumented immigrants being held there. Charged with the crackling suspense of a thriller, this true life tale of courage and resistance is equally enthralling and galvanizing as it exposes the injustices and inhumanity of America’s deeply broken deportation system.
Ayanna is making the most out of her last summer in Harlem before heading to college. She’s bold, confident, and not really looking for love—until she meets the slightly older Isaiah. After one of those rare first dates that lasts for hours, she knows there’s something different about him. Ayanna finds herself at an intimidating crossroads: one foot is still under her mother’s roof, while the the other is primed to step out on her own with Isaiah. Premature is an outspoken portrait of a young woman in transition, anchored by the relationships that shape us, the friendships that bolster and push us, and the love that has the power to change everything.
Additionally, the Brooklyn film festival will also screen the documentary short It’s Going to Be Beautiful by Luis Gutiérrez Arias and John Henry Theisen, a dystopian meditation on the building of the US-Mexico border wall as government workers test the ominously imposing steel and concrete prototypes.
Presented by BAM, the annual Brooklyn film festival for both emerging and established filmmakers as well as unconventional and often overlooked films, will run June 12 - 23.