Focusing on the bonding between three female (an African American female, a half African American half Latino American female, and a Latino American female) high school members of Brooklyn's "Jackie Robinson Steppers Marching Band" and the choices the girls face once their school closes down because of the need for asbestos removal. This film is about a host of topics, not least of which is the hard-work involved in maintaining friendships. Written by
I recently saw this amazing movie at the San Francisco International Film Festival. I didn't know what to expect, but what I saw was a revelation. From beginning to end, I felt immersed in the movie feeling that the experience I was having was not a movie, but an actual slice of real life. In the question and answer session with Jim McKay after the movie, it became clear why this was the case. McKay spent a total of about 3-4 years on this movie, including one year hanging out with the (real) marching band in the movie. Preparation like this is what gave the film its incredible authenticity, the feeling of being there along with three teenagers in Brooklyn. I also appreciate McKay taking his time with each scene, letting one scene flow organically into another, instead of the quick cuts from scene to scene you tend to see in major studio movies (and most of the indie movies I've seen--many of which just aspire to be mainstream movies). If you didn't happen to catch it at the Film Festival, I highly recommend seeing it when it starts getting distributed (McKay said that looks like either Fall 2000 or Spring 2001). Personally, I can't wait to see it again.
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