UC Berkeley Library

2000-2009

English as a Second Language (ESL) (2005)

Directed by Youssef Delara. Cast: Kuno Becker, Danielle Camastra, Treva Etienne, Efrain Figueroa, Harold Gould, Sal Lopez, Lillian Hurst, John Michael Higgins, Maria Conchita Alonso. A stranger in a strange land, Bolivar De La Cruz has just crossed the border from Mexico in search of a better life. In contrast, restless, club-hopping second-generation immigrant Lola has the American Dream at her fingertips but feels like a stranger in her own life, forever caught between appeasing her old-world mother and following her heart.

Everything is Illuminated (2005)

Directed by Liev Schreiber. Cast: Elijah Wood, Eugene Hutz, Boris Leskin, Laryssa Lauret. A young American man, with the help of a local who speaks weirdly broken English, journeys to find the woman who saved his grandfather during World War II in a Ukrainian village that was ultimately razed by the Nazis. 106 min. Credits and other information from the Internet Movie Database

Eyes Wide Open (Einayim Petukhoth) (Israel | Germany | France, 2009)

Directed by Haim Tabakman. Cast: Zohar Strauss, Ran Danker, Ravit 'Tinkerbell' Rozen. Aaron, a butcher and devout family man in Jerusalem's ultraorthodox Jewish community, has his quiet life interrupted when Erzi, a handsome, young Yeshiva student, happens on his shop. Intrigued by the young man, Aaron offers Erzi a job and becomes his friend and mentor. The two grow closer, and soon other feelings surface. As their forbidden sexual desire grows, Aaron begins to neglect his business and his family.

Far From Heaven (2002)

Directed by Todd Haynes. Cast: Julianne Moore, Dennis Quaid,Dennis Haysbert, Patricia Clarkson, Viola Davis, James Rebhorn.Cathy is the perfect 50s housewife, living the perfect 50s life:healthy kids, successful husband, social prominence. Then one nightshe surprises her husband Frank having sex with another man, andher tidy world starts spinning out of control. In her confusion andgrief, she finds consolation in the friendship of theirAfrican-American gardener, Raymond--a socially taboo relationshipthat leads to the further disintegration of life as she knew it.107 min.

Faubourg 36 (Paris 36) (France / Germany / Czech Republic, 2008)

Directed by Christophe Barratier. Cast: Gérard Jugnot, Clovis Cornillac, Kad Merad, Nora Arnezeder. When Pigoil's adulterous wife leaves with his beloved son, he gambles everything to get him back. As the previous manager of the now closed Chansonia Theatre, he makes a deal with the new owner to give him one month to turn the theater around and make a profit.

Focus (2002)

Director, Neal Slavin. Cast: William H. Macy, Laura Dern, David Paymer, Meat Loaf Aday, Kay Hawtrey, Joseph Ziegler, Kenneth Welsh. This story follows a Brooklyn man and his wife who become victims of mistaken identity at the height of World War II. Their bigoted community believes that they are Jews. Slowly ostracized at home and work, they learn the value of self and solidarity as they struggle to maintain dignity and find happiness. 107 min. Credits and other information from the Internet Movie Database

For Colored Girls (2002?)

Directed by Tyler Perry. Cast: Janet Jackson, Loretta Devine,Michael Ealy, Kimberly Elise, Omari Hardwick, Hill Harper, ThandieNewton, Phylicia Rashad, Anka Noni Rose, Tessa Thompson, KerryWashington, Whoopi Goldberg. Adapted by writer/director Tyler Perryfrom Ntozake Shange's acclaimed choreopoem, this gripping filmpaints an unforgettable portrait of what it means to be a woman ofcolor in the modern world. Each of the women portray one of thecharacters represented in the collection of twenty poems, revealingdifferent issues that impact women in general and women of color inparticular.

Freedom Song (2000)

Directed by Phil Alden Robinson. Cast: Danny Glover, VondieCurtis Hall, Vicellous Reon Shannon, Loretta Devine, Glynn Turman.A stirring dramatization of unsung small-town citizens during thecivil rights struggle in the early 1960s who risked their lives tobring change to the grassroots level. Based on first-handrecollections of veteran activists, burning with realism,commitment, and the urgency of lives in crisis. 117 min. Credits and other information from the Internet Movie Database

Freedom Writers (2007)

Director, Richard LaGravenese. Cast: Hilary Swank, PatrickDempsey, Scott Glenn, Imelda Staunton, April Lee Hernandez, Mario,Kristin Herrera, Jacklyn Ngan, Sergio Montalvo, Jason Finn, DeanceWyatt, Vanetta Smith, Gabriel Chavarria, Hunter Parrish.Dramatization of a true story about a teacher in a racially dividedschool who gives her students what they've always needed, a voice.Erin Gruwell comes to a southern California high school bubblingover with naive optimism. She quickly discovers that her unrulyclassroom is not easily won over by her good intentions.

Frida (USA / Canada / Mexico, 2002)

Directed by Julie Taymor. Cast: Salma Hayek, Alfred Molina, Valeria Golino, Mia Maestro, Roger Rees, Diego Luna, Geoffrey Rush, Ashley Judd, Antonio Banderas. A dramatization of the life of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, from her humble upbringing to the worldwide fame and controversy that surrounded both her and her husband, Diego Rivera. 122 min. Credits and other information from the Internet Movie Database

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