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American Women's Club of Hamburg

Review - Little Men

Director: Ira Sachs, USA

Thirteen-year-old Jake lives in Manhattan with his father, an actor, and his mother, a psychotherapist. After the death of the grandfather, they move to the family home in Brooklyn, which they inherited. They live upstairs. The ground floor has been rented for years to a seamstress for her shop. Her (also 13-year-old) son, Tony lives with her. Jake and Tony become fast friends and both dream of being accepted at the La Guardia High School in Manhattan for their talents in art and music respectively. The crisis arises when Jake’s parents prepare an eviction process against Tony’s mother. She pays little to no rent, due to her friendship with the deceased grandfather. The family needs the money, especially since the aunt insists on her part of the inheritance. The boys join forces against this plan. Jake’s mother firmly thinks that she can solve the problem; after all, “You know I’m trained in conflict resolution.” The father is more relaxed, but can’t help.

My personal interest in the film came because my 14-year-old granddaughter also lives in Brooklyn, which I visit frequently, and she was accepted at this famous La Guardia High School, the site of the 1980 movie Fame. However, the story could have occurred any place in the world, as it is typical of human nature. (BT)

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