Assignment #10: Chop Shop

Chop Shop is one of those movies that are not meant for people who watch films as an escape. The film is a very realistic approach at showing the life of many people that live in this world. The story is that of a young boy named Ale and his sister Izzy. They both live and work in an auto repair shop in Queens, New York. Ale does not go to school but only works day and night. His sister works in a food truck but also prostitutes herself to make money. Ale wants to raise enough money to buy a food truck of his own so his sister and himself can make their own money and become their own bosses. Things sadly do not go the way they want when Ale eventually buys the truck and realizes there is a lot of repairs to be made estimating in about $10,000. The story is very gritty. There is no mention of Ale’s parents or why he never attended school. In the end Ale and his sister sell the truck for 1,000 dollars but there is no mention of what happens next. I personally feel that it was a sign of the bond between a brother and sister and that they worked hard to pursue a dream even though it didn’t get fulfilled. I have lived around that area where the movie takes place and I can say the setting is spot on. It does look like the slums and i think the director achieved his goal of making you feel like you were there with Ale going through all that he went through. I really liked this film and I think it is something relatable to life  in that there isn’t always a happy ending.

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Assignment #9 -Shakti Pal

The Netflix Series “Orange is the New Black” is a pretty good TV show. It did show woman in a different light as not every other woman’s television show out right now has the same theme or type of characters out. Most television shows modeled after woman just tend to show the stereotype or norm of what woman like. Examples being Makeup, Fashion. Jewelry. Sisterhood, Motherhood. That’s what makes “Orange is the New Black” so different. The show focuses on a woman who goes to Prison for the first time because of something she did in the past involving her lesbian lover who happened to be a drug dealer. She is now sent off to a whole new environment in Prison and it basically shows her coping with this new place and at the same time missing her fiancé. She is introduced to a bunch of different characters and different people. Ive seen this formula before in many movies featuring men but never with woman so it is definitely something refreshing to see. It is very nice to see Woman in television represented in a different way and with different topics surrounding them. This show does have male characters but her they seem like minor roles just as her fiancé in my opinion seems a bit like a minor character. If i were to compare this show to other shows marketed to woman I would say this is something that has come far in an aspect of changing things up. My favorite part is how it shows that not everything is male dominated anymore and things do change. The show does have humor, suspense and drama but i feel the overall theme is Woman’s empowerment. Even if I compare it to the other show “Girls” I can say even that show has the men as minor and almost pathetic characters who look like they depend on woman. Both shows have different characters when it comes to woman but I feel both bring something different to the table. Although i prefer “Orange is the New Black” as I feel it is more refreshing and something that maybe male audiences would also prefer orange-is-the-new-black-orange-is-the-new-black-35892191-1024-1448

The Visitor

The film “The Visitor” is a very touching film and had a topic that many people can relate to. The film tells the story of Professor Walter Vale and how he is living a life of solitude and emptiness. He lives alone and is very fond of classical music. One day Walter visits his apartment in New York City when he runs into a man and woman living there. Their names are Tarek and Zainab and are in the USA illegally. Walter becomes good friends with Tarek and Tarek teaches Walter to play the drum. Then one day Tarek is arrested for what the Police believed was him trying to get into the subway without paying. This leads to them uncovering he is illegal and is going to be deported. It is here where you see a sort of Transformation in Walter as he leaves his job and tries his best to save Tarek. Walter develops feelings for Tarek’s Mother who is in NYC to see her son. Walter now had a meaning in his life and he believes there is purpose. Eventually Tarek gets deported and his Mother leaves to go be with her son back in Syria. There is plenty of emotion and in the end you see Walter in the subway playing the drums almost as a tribute to Tarek. I loved this film and highly recommend it. The title itself refers to both Characters I feel. Tarek and Walter as both were visitors in each others lives and helped each other.

Assignment #7 by Shakti Pal

The trip in my opinion was very informative. It showed me a landscape in which I could one day work on my craft. I really didn’t know there was a media center before this trip and now that I know there is one is very cool. I want to create movies etc with a friend of mine and I could now rent space to work on it after its done. It was also a very nice location and the building it self had a very Artsy feel that I liked. I highly recommend anyone in my major to go there. The Bridge meeting was pretty cool also, It was nice to see representatives from Music Choice, MTV and ESPN. It was very informative and detailed discussion and definitely a good thing for people going into the Mass Media field. I wish we could’ve also met average people that go there too and just view their work and see what kind of things they do in the Center. One thing that mesmerized me was the tv screens featuring works by different Artists such as a Fly and a Spider and other fascinating works. I really enjoyed it and I can’t wait to someday go there again.

Assignment #6: Do The Right Thing by Shakti Pal

In viewing the film “Do The Right Thing” by Spike Lee, I had to say I was surprised by the movie. I was thinking it was going to be more of a documentary but turned out to be something more realistic in a sense because it feels so real. The story revolves around a young man named Mookie who lives in a predominately African American neighborhood in Brooklyn. He works for an Italian family in a Pizzeria. There are heightened tensions in the film when a character named Buggin’ Out eats at the Pizzeria and notices there are no Black People on the wall instead only Italians. The owner, Sal tells him its his Pizzeria and that he can put whoever he wants on the wall. Tensions rise when Buggin’ Out starts a Boycott of Sal’s Pizzeria and gains a follower in  character named Radio Raheem. Sal’s Son already dislikes Black people and it shows him growing intolerant of them. The end of the movie leads up to a brawl in the Pizzeria in which Radio Raheem ends up getting killed by the Police and Buggin’ Out getting arrested and taken away. This sparks outrage by the large Black Community as they start to Riot and burn down Sal’s Pizzeria. Mookie ignites the destruction when he throws a garbage can through Sal’s Pizzeria. One thing I observed is how in the current day there are already high tensions between African Americans and the Police. This movie did show a bit of the Police Brutality but also showed that violence doesn’t solve anything just makes things worse. I first didn’t agree with Mookie throwing the trash can through Sal’s window but I think it was a way of saving Sal and diverting the attention away from him and onto his Pizzeria. Sal’s Son witnesses everything and it only fuels his hatred for Black people. I think the film came through with a proper delivery of its message and I highly recommend it to anyone. It is very realistic and I feel the characters are very well developed. My only problem is it left me with a sense of doubt about Mookie. After had worked for Sal he did destroy his business and I didn’t know whether he was a good or bad character but then again maybe he’s not supposed to be viewed as either.