The Bronx is a borough of New York City that is full of stories and culture. Five years ago, Gregory Hernandez, a native of the Bronx, noticed the closure of the last bookstore in the district. This prompted him to create a documentary film that premieres this Saturday at AMC Bay Plaza. The film features Eleventh grade student Emmarie Sanchez, who expresses her desire for libraries and bookstores in her district. The 1970s saw a lot of destruction in the South Bronx due to fires.
Black and Puerto Rican residents were blamed for the devastation, even though they were struggling to save their neighborhoods. Vivian Vázquez Irizarry, a Bronx-born filmmaker, seeks to uncover the truth about these fires and the politics of racism and abandonment that still shape our cities today. Sonia was the editor of two news documentaries: AMERICA BY THE NUMBERS with MARIA HINOJOSA and THE NEW DECIDERS with MARIA HINOJOSA. Yoruba Richen is another documentary filmmaker whose work has been featured on PBS, The New York Times Op Doc, Frontline Digital, The Cut website of New York Magazine, The Atlantic and Field of Vision. Edwin Martinez is a Bronx-born filmmaker whose work has been screened in national and international theaters as well as major television and news media such as PBS, ESPN, Fox, CBS and The New York Times. The Bronx has a rich history that is often overlooked or forgotten.
Gregory Hernandez's documentary film seeks to bring attention to this history by highlighting the stories of its people. Vivian Vázquez Irizarry is another filmmaker who is determined to uncover the truth about the fires that devastated her hometown in the 1970s. Sonia and Yoruba Richen have also made significant contributions to documentary filmmaking in the Bronx. Finally, Edwin Martinez has used his work to showcase the borough's culture on a global scale. Documentary filmmakers from the Bronx are making an impact on how we view our cities and our world.
Their stories are inspiring and remind us that we all have something to contribute to our communities.