Spread Love: The 5th Annual Dominican Film Festival in New York


The Dominican film industry has been growing by leaps and bounds. Serious cinema is being made in the Dominican Republic. The only problem is that many of those outstanding films never make it to the United States. So you either have travel to Quisqueya or buy a low quality bootleg. Enter the Dominican Film Festival in New York. In its 5th year, the festival has been highlighting the best that the Dominican film industry has to offer in the capital of the Dominican diaspora, Washington Heights. This year is no exception so make sure you snatch up your tickets pronto. The film festival kicks off on Wednesday, June 22nd with La Familia Reyna at the United Palace and ends on Sunday, June 26th with Todos Los Hombres Son Iguales at the CUMC Alumni Auditorium. With that said, here is our handy dandy guide to the festival.

For more info: https://www.dominicanfilmfestival.com/


When his father disappears from their fishing village, teen Pedro sets out to find his missing parent.While scouring the city he discovers that living is harder than he had originally thought. Safety and unconditional parental love are hard to find in this social drama. However, Pedro encounters humanity in the least expected places.


For their last summer together, best friends Oliver, Hemingway and Moises embark on a road trip to the far¬off town of Pedernales, where Oliver’s girlfriend is staying with her grandmother before she moves away to New York. Hemingway dreams of being a writer and Moises, an amateur photographer, is in search of the perfect image. A series of mishaps and fortuitous encounters introduces the trio to a cross section of Dominican society and to a beautiful land they took for granted.


A poignant study of crime, cultural tensions and the migrant experience, this modern-day Romeo & Juliet story with a Caribbean twist is a fresh and honest look at the harsh realities that Haitians face in their neighboring country. It is also a timeless tale of forbidden love.


Willy Echevarria is a policeman in a small town in the Dominican Republic. He’s also a fan of and yearns to be like the leads of classic Film Noir. After he is fired in a bumbled operation with his bad cop partner, Bruce Garcia, Willy has a chance to restore his career by finding a historical artifact that mysteriously went missing from a national museum.


This is the story of Juan, a cop who dreams of joining the secret service, at the chagrin of his father, General Sánchez, who doubts he will make a good agent. As a last resort, Juan asks the toughest cop in his unit to train him. As part of his training, he will support Lieutenant Torres, a very meticulous FBI agent who comes to the Dominican Republic to investigate an international network of criminals headed by Mr. September.


Chique Bonbón, uses his pimped out candy truck to seduce women. He adheres to a strict set of rules and a technique that seems infallible, until the day he catches a glimpse of a booty he thought could not exist. For those that become obsessed, the streets can become a dangerous place.


Size Doesn’t Matter tells the story of a Latina woman who embraces her weight and sexuality without shame or taboos. In this film she not only describes her luck with men, but also provides some insightful tips on sex and maintaining healthy relationships. She moreover discusses the complexities of her conservative religious family, her dreams, her fears and her weight. She is the perfect example that in life, you could either use your reality to become a victim or embrace that reality for better or worse.


Isaac is a young worker, entrepreneur, and the head of two families, both his own and that of his parents. He has had to carry on the business of his father, Mr. Abraham Reyna. His wife and son constantly tell him that he has too many occupations. His mother, Miss Sarah, continues to be a source of love and comfort that brings him peace and knowledge. Only one person is missing from his house—Ismael, his irreverent older brother who left the village years ago without a trace, never to be seen again… until now. Ismael has come back and the family will have to choose between bringing the past back or living the present.


A recent college graduate returns to her native Bronx to live with her Abuelita and struggles to find a job, a relationship and her self-worth.


This melodrama takes us through Ana’s journey, a flower seller who takes the search for justice for her murdered teenage son into her own hands. On the way, Ana has to face corrupt politicians and police who look after their own interests. Will she get the support and resources to survive and succeed?


María África Gracia Vidal knew she was destined to live a short life. While seeking Hollywood fame, she lost the two things that meant the most in her life: her family and her identity. She rejected her roots by changing her name to María Montez. Little did she know that it was her voluptuous figure and golden tanned skin that would help her become the famous Queen of Technicolor.


A tale of a small .22 caliber gun with a heavy history behind it, “La Gunguna” tours the caribbean underground leaving a trace of bad luck and unfortunate events, marked with tones of black humor. A parade of bizarre characters  – lowlifes, loan sharks, gun traffickers, professional pool and domino players, corrupt military men – moved by vengeance and deception, weaved together in episodes of tension, violence, even reflexion, in an ironic and picturesque society where “La Gunguna” becomes a bad omen, showing how curses are sometimes disguised under a shiny coat of gold.


Powder and Gold is a story of intrigue and action that regards ambition as the driving force of organized crime today. Danny, a young boy picked off the streets by mob boss Don Toribio, meets his friend Teo who works in the same organization. Teo’s girlfriend, Marisela, an ambitios youth who plans to take over the business of drug trafficing in the DR, decides that she needs Danny to do so. Together they provoke a war between different drug gangs that plagues Mexicans, Colombians, and Dominicans alike.


Leidy, Fina and Clara leave their children in distant towns to be raised by relatives while they are away caring for somebody else’s child. Moving back and forth between urban and rural scenarios, this documentary dives deep into the conflicts faced by live­in nannies. In a love chain, where mother figures are substituted and duplicated, bonds grow strong between kids and their nannies, and between the nannies’ children and the grandmothers or aunts who care for them. Is there just one way to define motherly love?


Three men meet on a trip to the Dominican Republic. They all have something in common—they’re getting divorced. They hit it off and decide to share the same house and lifestyle. This lifestyle is governed by a set of rules; the most important is that none of the women they date can stay more than one night in the house. The twisted relationships with their ex­wives and their macho attitudes make this a one­of­a­kind comedy. The only woman who comes and goes is the maid.

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