Friday, July 31, 2009

Boxers and Ballerinas Documentary Review

Boxers and Ballerinas (2004) is a very well done modern documentary about the social and political differences between the United States and Cuba. This is not your grandmother's documentary! Through innovative camera techniques and a "sit back and watch" or photojournalistic style, Mike Cahill and Brit Marling have made a wonderful film. They were the directors, cinematographers, and editors of Boxeadores y Bailarinas; taking over two years to shoot in three different countries (Mexico being the third).

The documentary focuses on four people; a boxer and a ballerina in Havana, Cuba and the like in Miami, Florida. We follow them as they push for their dreams while having many challenges and successes. The directors did a great job of staying focused on these four people and what they see; some history and background is given but no political message or swayed views are present.

Ordenis Ugas (17) of Santiago, Cuba - 2003 World Junior Boxing champion - residing in Havana for school and boxing

Annia Recia (18) of Havana, Cuba - dancer for the Radio and Television Ballet Company- to train and work in Mexico

Sergio Garcia (21) of Miami, FL - defected from Cuba in 1993 - budding professional boxer

Paula Roque (21) of Miami, FL - defected from Cuba in 1992 - ballerina for Rosario Suarez Dance Company


8 out of 10 - Very eye opening and interesting! The DVDhas some great interviews with Mike and Brit that were very insightful. English and Spanish with English subtitles.