Brooklyn is famous for Hip Hop and hipsters. But few people know that it’s also home to a burgeoning indie film scene. The organizers of the Brooklyn Film Festival (aka BFF — cute, right?) are also the owners of indieScreen, a small cinema in the heart of Williamsburg, BK. Starting this Friday, the film festival opens at their mecca of cine.

Amongst the 100 films showing at this year’s BFF are películas from Cuba, Brazil, España, and los States. Here are our Top Picks of the Latino films at the Brooklyn Film Festival.

Sleeping With the Fishes
Director: Nicole Gomez Fisher
Starring: Gina Rodriguez, Ana Ortiz, Priscilla Lopez, Tibor Feldman
Country: USA

Get tickets here.

SYNOPSIS: The first feature from writer/director Nicole Gomez Fisher, Sleeeping With the Fishes is a Latino comedy which captures one girl’s journey of self-discovery and the dynamics of her zany family. With its fair share of “ay dios mio” and “oy vey” moments, the film comes to life with colorful characters and one-liners that can only be found in a Latino-Jewish home in Brooklyn.

Jirafas (Giraffes)
Director: Enrique Alvarez
Country: Cuba

Get tickets here.

SYNOPSIS: Three young roommates seek their footing in today’s Cuba, where you must fight for a home of your own. The young lovers Manuel and Lia manage to lay their hands on the keys of the house from which Tania has been evicted: no rent in a beautiful old house in the middle of the city. But Tania refuses to give up her home. Jirafas takes us along in this silent war, largely set indoors. All the pent-up irritations and sensuality reach a boiling point when a hurricane approaches.

Amazônia Eterna (Eternal Amazon)
Director: Belisario Franca
Country: Brazil

Get tickets here.

SYNOPSIS: At a time when the world is focused on the impact of humans on the environment, Eternal Amazon is a lyrical, poetic documentary that presents a critical analysis of how the world’s largest tropical rainforest is understood and utilized. Exploring the Amazon’s five million square kilometers – which are home to countless plant and animal species, and 20% of the world’s freshwater reserves – the film asks whether it is possible for humans to make sustainable use of the rainforest. Executives, politicians and environmentalists working together with indigenous tribes and riverbank communities are currently constructing a model for using nature that can extract its resources while generating work and income, with minimal environmental impact.

Brooklyn Meets Spain

On Saturday, June 8 BFF is partnering with Mecal, International Short Film and Animation Festival of Barcelona, on two programs: a collection of animated shorts playing at Windmill Studios at 5pm and a free of charge feature-length partially animated documentary playing at indieScreen at 5:30pm. A midnight party with special guest DJ Turmix from Spain will follow at indieScreen.

Get more info here.

30 años de oscuridad (30 Years of Darkness)
Director: Manuel H. Martín
Country: Spain
FREE!

SYNOPSIS: After the end of the Civil War, Manuel Cortés, a former mayor of the town of Mijas in the province of Malaga, had no chance to escape from Spain. After a long and dangerous journey, he managed to get home at night without being discovered. His wife, Juliana, warned him of the numerous firing squads that were taking place in the village. So, they decided to open a small hole in the wall where Manuel could hide. Manuel Cortés could never have imagined that this small space behind the wall would become his personal prison for 30 years. 30 años de oscuridad is the story of the so-called post-war moles who had to sacrifice an entire lifetime to escape repression.

The 2013 Brooklyn Film Festival will run from May 31 through June 9 in Williamsburg at indieScreen (289 Kent Avenue) and for the first time at Windmill Studios NYC (287 Kent Avenue).

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