Presented By:Lucas Joaquin
Jake (Theo Taplitz) is a quiet 13-year-old, sensitive and smart, and wondering how he’s going to fit in as an artist. His school friend Tony (Michael Barbieri) is much more outgoing and confident, and wants to be an actor. They connect in the inexplicable way true friends do. Jake and Tony live in different neighborhoods until Jake’s father Brian (Greg Kinnear) inherits and moves his family into the building that houses Tony’s mother Leonor (Paulina Garcia)’s dress shop, which she has rented for years on a handshake agreement with Jake’s grandfather.
This carefully built and touching movie from Ira Sachs (Love Is Strange, Keep the Lights On) shows how their new proximity deepens their ease and support of each other. A serious problem erupts between the parents when Brian, urged on by his sister, wants Leonor to pay a much higher rent, reflecting the dramatically increased value of real estate in their Brooklyn neighborhood. Jake and Tony find ways to weather the parental strain.
Precisely acted by a wonderful cast, Jake and Tony’s relationship is central to our understanding of a reality of gentrification and cultural differences that exist in many urban neighborhoods. We see hope as these two little men navigate challenges that could corrupt their important friendship. (Jed Dietz)
Lucas Joaquin has produced a wide array of exciting independent films, including Keep the Lights On (2012), Beasts of the Southern Wild (2012), Mother of George (MDFF 2013’s Closing Night film), and Love Is Strange (2014).