We are excited to announce the first convening of the Brooklyn Commune Film Club on November 4th. In honor of the New York City Mayoral Election, to take place the subsequent day, we will be gathering at the West (379 Union Ave, Brooklyn – 7pm) to watch Raul Barcelona’s documentary, “The Promise of New York.”
It’s 2005 and Michael Bloomberg is running for reelection (the first time…) and his democratic rival is Bronx Borough President Fernando Ferrer. However, these are not the only candidate, as filmmaker, Raul Barcelona films the campaigns of several lesser known candidates including Seth Blum, a high-school math teacher, Christopher X. Brodeur, a political gadfly, and our own ANDY HORWITZ as they attempt to collect petitions, get on the ballot, raise money and generally navigate the Mayoral race.
We hope you will Join the filmmaker, Andy and more on November 4th as we watch this testament to the “democratic process” and prepare for another romp in the proverbial election hay.
About the Candidates
SETH BLUM (Education Party)
Seth Blum has been a New York City High School teacher of Mathematics for nine years at the Manhattan International High School. He teaches Pre-calculus, AP Calculus and a Stock Market elective. He is currently working towards his second Masters in Administration. After taking office, Mayor Michael Bloomberg took control of the schools in the city. Because Bloomberg’s appointed Chancellor was not an educator, Seth decided he needed to step up and run in the 2005 mayoral election.
Seth believes that education needs to evolve and include alternative forms of assessment and the use of engaging, interesting curriculum such as projects and hands-on activities. He does not use text books in his classroom and he does not rely solely on exams to assess student performance. In the current climate of “No Student Left Untested”, Seth feels there is a dire need for politicians and lawyers to step aside and finally allow education to be run by educators.
CHRISTOPHER BRODEUR (Democratic Party)
Christopher X. Brodeur is a musician, cartoonist, journalist and a well known political gadfly in New York City. He first gained notoriety for his numerous confrontations with former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani during his two terms in office. His criticisms of Giuliani culminated in Brodeur’s heckling of Giuliani’s testimony during the 9/11 Comission hearing held in 2004. The incident was well documented in the press worldwide.
He attempted to be the Green Party candidate for mayor in 2001 but was defeated in the primary election. In 2005, he decided to run again but this time as a Democratic candidate so that debate organizers wouldn’t be able to keep him from participating with the excuse that he was a minor party candidate.
ANDY HORWITZ (Blog Party)
Andy Horwitz is a writer/performer/producer in New York City. He has performed his comic monologues and spoken word pieces to sold out houses all over New York in such venues as P.S.122, Dixon Place, Here Arts Center, CBGBs and The Knitting Factory. His writing has appeared frequently at Nerve.com, Heeb Magazine and other outlets. He is the founder and editor of Culturebot.org.
In April 2005, after reading an article in The New York Daily News about the upcoming mayoral election he decided to run for Mayor. He was astounded by how much money Mayor Bloomberg had already spent and was uninspired by his Democratic opponents. Rather than complain, he figured he would get involved.
About Raul Barcelona
About Raul Barcelona
Raul Barcelona is an award-winning filmmaker based in New York City whose unique international background has been instrumental in his development of avigorous and entertaining filmmaking style that exhibits a keen appreciation for political, cultural and social diversity. Synthesizing a broad array of influences from European and American cultures as well as the New York-based film community, his approach is sure to yield an exciting creative career in which The Promise of New York is the first of many innovative, beautiful, complex and hilarious feature documentaries.
Born in Spain to Cuban exiles, Raul developed a strong desire to express himself artistically during his teenage years, when his family relocated first to Florence, Italy, then to Houston, Texas. Art became a way of overcoming not just his teenage angst, but the language barrier as well. Despite his artistic inclinations, however, his parents encouraged him to pursue a career that would provide him with a stable financial future. In 2001 he obtained an electrical engineering degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York, and upon graduating he relocated to Houston, Texas.
On September 11th, 2001 he interviewed for an engineering job with a space robotics contractor for NASA. The company called back with a job offer months later, but by then his artistic aspirations had resuscitated and there was no turning back: behind the wheel of truck packed with all his earthly belongings, the Houston skyline fading in the rearview mirror, he headed north to New York City to seize his dream of a filmmaking career.
The Promise of New York marks the beginning of that dream