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The New York Latino Film Festival (NYLFF) kicks off on Monday, August 12th.   It will have more than 83 films representing 10 countries. That’s a ton of flicks, even for cinephiles! The depth and breadth of this years line up is an achievement in and of itself. Given the dearth of stories being made for the Latinx generation. Both in terms of perspective and accuracy. This year, there is something for everyone. From documentaries, to shorts, international features and good old homegrown classics.  Here are 8 reasons to attend this year’s New York Latino Film Festival.

1. Futuro Digital Conference

A one-day digital conference featuring conversations with top thought-leaders, executives, and influencers in the Latino digital space. Hosted by Google at their New York City HQ. It’s not film per se, but an opportunity to be among the creators and community. Learn and exchange with one another.

 

2. Poetic Justice Screening

The film community of color and at large lost one of its best this year with the passing of director John Singleton. This year as tribute to Singleton, the NYLFF will present an outdoor screening of Poetic Justice, with a special appearance by his daughter Justice Singleton.

3. Princess of the Row

The 2019 NYLFF will open with the New York premiere of the film Princess of the Row from director Van Maximilian Carlson and starring Martin Sheen, Edi Gathegi, Ana Ortiz, Tayler Buck, Jacob Vargas, among others. Unflinching and emotional, Princess of the Row is the inspiring tale of a runaway foster child who will stop at nothing to live with the only family she knows: her father… a homeless, mentally ill-veteran fighting to survive on the streets of LA’s skid row.

4. I Like It Like That

Before it was a hit song, it was a hit film. Hard to believe it’s been 25 years since writer/director Darnell Martin’s debut film I Like It Like That premiered. This year the Bronx-set classic will celebrate its 25th anniversary with a screening and moviegoers will be joined by the film’s cast — fully reunited for the first time since its premiere in 1994.

5. De Lo Mio

A film written and directed by first-time filmmaker, Diana Peralta, De Lo Mio tells the story of two sisters, Carolina and Rita (played by Darlene Demorizi and Sasha Merci, respectively), who travel to Santiago, Dominican Republic, to reunite with their estranged half-brother, in order to sell their family home after their father passes away. In doing so, the siblings share light-hearted moments and family blow ups as the sister’s cope with the loss—not only of their father—but their family’s home and, along with it, the last remaining connection to the island. The film premiered at the BAMCinemaFest and has been garnering rave reviews on the indie circuit.

De Lo Mio

6. Farruko: En Letra de Otro

New York Latino Film Festival will debut the HBO Latino music special, Farruko: En Letra de Otro, starring hit reggaeton artist Farruko. The show will cover personal favorites and songs that have inspired him – from Frankie Ruiz’s “Vuelvo a Nacer” to Jerry Rivera’s “Que Hay de Malo,” from Yandel’s “Te Suelto el Pelo” to Divino’s “Me Trancaron” and Ricardo Arjona’s “Asignatura Pendiente.” Electrifying performances in and around Farruko’s home island of Puerto Rico are intercut with intimate conversations about his upbringing and musical influences. Can’t miss entertainment.

7. Raúl Juliá: The World’s a Stage

From award-winning director Ben DeJesus (John Leguizamo: Tales from a Ghetto Klown), Raúl Juliá: The World’s a Stage is a warm and revealing portrait of the groundbreaking actor’s journey from his native Puerto Rico to the creative hotbed of 1960s New York City, to prominence on Broadway and in Hollywood. Filled with passion, determination and joy, Juliá’s brilliant and daring career was tragically cut short by his untimely death 25 years ago, at age 54.

Actor Raul Julia

8. The Mission

No, it’s not a panel, event or film. It’s the reason we all gather over the week. Festival founder Calixto Chinchilla summed it up best, when he told People En Espanol “There is power when we are together in a room, there is power when we are seeing each other’s images. At a time when there is a lack of Latino images, now we have the power to control those images. We create these spaces for people to network, for people to build, for people to see themselves, there is power in that.”

Perhaps the greatest reason of all to attend this year’s festivities.

The 16th annual New York Latino Film Festival Festival returns August 12-18, 2019. For a schedule of films, events and to purchase tickets visit: New York Latino Film Festival.

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