NYADIFF 2021 Review: Stories of the Caribbean

Another online review from the 2021 NYADIFF. A collection of short films that focused on the Caribbean and the struggles of everyday life from the natives. The first story is named Three Blades/Trois Machettes. Made in Haiti the film depicts a day in the life of three men from the same family is represented by a machete from youth, adolescent and adult. The youth is struggling to find his way with his new family. The adult also the father is trying to keep ends meet with his job and the adolescent wants to be liked and free from the struggles of everyday life. As the three men intertwine among each other the director made that we get to see Haiti in a setting while it not easy to working people who have to fight everyday to put food on the table. The end of the film shows the thought as a struggle between the adolescent and the father commences and the youth tries to intervene. A good story to start the short film sequence because it sets the tone of what the next couple of films will be.


The second film is called Dorlis. Filmed in Martinique it's about a teenager who visits her ailing grandfather and certain secrets comes out while residing in his residence. Dorlis and her family visits her grandfather who is paralyzed from a accident. Throughout the stay Dorlis have visions about her grandfather and what he done to her. Her mother doesn't know about the situation and is constantly working. The films shows that the closest people can do the most harm but can also receive the most harm in return.


3 Leaves/3 Fèy is a Haitian film about another child who have been abused by her relatives( this time it's her father) Esther is a 6 year old girl who been abused and uses a music box to escape from her everyday life. The music box that appears in the first few minutes of the film symbolizes a gateway for Esther. Every meeting with her father she resorts to what music the box is playing and escape. The film is made with finger puppets which is a great interpretation for kids who struggle with abuse and need a outlet. The dialogue in this film should be noted because even though it's in Creole you can see the actions of the puppets as the adults speak to the child.


The last film of the is titled "I Don't Call It Ghetto". It features a Trinidadian woman who is a mother of three and a cop. This documentary chronicles her growing up in one of the rough neighborhoods in Trinidad to her reason on why she became a cop. She talks about making a better place for her children and getting married to a man who gives her strength to face daily challenges. The image of her talking to her son who is among the neighborhood youth is compelling because it shows the battle to protect her own along side protecting the future. A brilliant documentary that shows that women can be mothers to children who are not their own.