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Soma Girls and Sixteen Blades of Grass

By Anita Antonini
Monday, 11/16/2009 3:54 PM

Soma Girls- World Premiere
Directed by Nandini Sikand and Alexia Prichard

Sixteen Blades of Grass
Directed by Sweta Vohra

Mahindra Indo-American Arts Council Film Festival
Nov 11-15, 2009

The two short documentary films screened together Soma Girls, and Sixteen Blades of Grass have similar themes of education and confidence building in India.

Soma Girls follows the lives of young daughters of sex workers in Kolkata. This affecting, yet short film is about Soma Home, the group home where they live. The girls… lovingly feisty and playful… are taught what they could never learn in a brothel. It’s also the story of inspired people making a difference in the lives of compromised children…people simply raising the confidence in others.

The New Light Center, run by Urmi Basu, provides shelter and health care in a nurturing environment to these girls, one where they begin to learn and make a better way of life. The girls learn English, while their ... Read More

Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire

By Anita Antonini
Tuesday, 11/10/2009 3:06 PM

Lee Daniels, not afraid of controversial subject matter, has directed the must-see film of the year: Precious: Based on the Novel Push by Sapphire.

The title character, brilliantly played by Gabourey “Gabby” Sidibe, carries a less-than-likely name, considering the hand life has dealt her and the treatment by those closest to her. Outcast by her extremely dysfunctional family, society and, ultimately, herself, Precious has much to overcome in her world.

Nevertheless, in her fantasies, Claireece “Precious” Jones is not worthless. In one daydream, she walks a red carpet in a flowing gown and, in another, pretends to be loved by her mother in an adaptation (a film within in a film) of a black & white Italian drama with Sophia Loren.

Taking place in Harlem in the 1980’s, this is the story of child abuse, incest, illiteracy and despair. Where this all leads...well…you’ll just have to see ... Read More

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