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Turtle Hill, Brooklyn (2013)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Drama | 3 May 2013 (USA)
2:18 | Trailer

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TURTLE HILL, BROOKLYN is a funny, sincere, slice of life about a couple just trying to figure it out. Mateo and Will invite their friends over for Will's 30th birthday. After a few surprise... See full summary »


Ryan Gielen



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Credited cast:
Brian W. Seibert ... Will
Ricardo Valdez Ricardo Valdez ... Mateo
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Joie Bauer Joie Bauer ... Alan
Ariel Bonilla Ariel Bonilla ... Luis
Maryll Botula Maryll Botula ... Rachel
Fred Cabral Fred Cabral ... Robert
Nicolas Davilla Nicolas Davilla ... Gavin
Nate Dendy Nate Dendy ... Jeffrey
Michael Edmund Michael Edmund ... Richard
Holly Lynn Ellis ... Jane
Peter Gregus Peter Gregus ... Steven
Adam Harper ... Sam
Krista Kujat ... Heather
Sarah Lemp ... Susan
Chantel Cherisse Lucier Chantel Cherisse Lucier ... Alex


TURTLE HILL, BROOKLYN is a funny, sincere, slice of life about a couple just trying to figure it out. Mateo and Will invite their friends over for Will's 30th birthday. After a few surprise visitors, they get through the day, but realize that doubting your partner isn't nearly as scary as doubting yourself. Written by Anonymous

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Comedy | Drama


Not Rated | See all certifications »





English | Spanish

Release Date:

3 May 2013 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Surprise Party See more »


Box Office


$1,000,000 (estimated)
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User Reviews

Just a quiet birthday party in Brooklyn
20 October 2012 | by Red-125See all my reviews

Turtle Hill, Brooklyn (2011) was directed by Ryan Gielen. It was co-written by its two stars, Brian W. Seibert and Ricardo Valdez.

The movie takes place on a hot summer's day in the home of Will (Siebert) and Mateo (Valdez). They are preparing for Will's 30th birthday party. Of course, they have to get the house ready for their guests, but they also have to try to figure out why they are not the happy, loving couple they want to be.

Will's sister arrives unexpectedly, and finds Mateo dressed only in a kilt. She is astonished and horrified to realize that her brother is in a gay relationship. Big problem number one--Will has told Mateo that he has come out to his family, but clearly he hasn't. Big problem number two is a secret that Mateo has kept from Bill. That secret is revealed as the party progresses.

The acting in the movie is excellent. Friends--straight and gay--arrive, liquor and conversation are flowing, and everything appears to be as it should be. We know that there's a serious underlying tension between the two men, but this isn't obvious to most of their friends.

This movie was filmed, of necessity, with a low budget. Because of this, the set is simply the couple's house and back yard. Without even any establishing shots to show us where we are, that situation is somewhat claustrophobic. (It's possible that Gielen didn't show us the street on which the house was located because he didn't have permission to do this. Or, it's possible that the neighborhood of "Turtle Hill" doesn't exist. I've never heard of it, although possibly it's been renamed, along with so many other NYC neighborhoods.)

It wasn't really a great party, and it wasn't really a great film, but the movie had its moments, and its charm, and it's worth seeing if it's readily available. We saw it in the Little Theatre as part of the noteworthy ImageOut--the Rochester LGBT Film and Video Festival.

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