Restored Documentary Shows 1984 South Williamsburg Before Gentrification

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After many years of restorative workLos Sures—a 1984 documentary filmed in a pocket of South Williamsburg with the same name—is receiving a long-anticipated week-long re-release at the Lower East Side’s wonderful Metrograph Theater.

Los Sures was originally filmed by Diego Echeveria, who captured rare and intimate footage of the Pureto Rican and Dominican community—more than a decade before artists began arriving in the 90s—contemplating what the future held for its youth. Drugs and gang violence plagued the streets, but Echeveria nonetheless captures a vibrant, rich, and tight-knit culture among its residents.

The nonprofit documentary arts organization Union Docs took charge of the film after it was re-discovered in 2007 by filmmakers Pamela Yates and Paco de Onis. Christopher Allen at Union Docs started screening the film locally, restoring the 16mm footage, and he worked to secure its theatrical release, starting April 15.

“In a lot of ways, I think there’s just not even really a consciousness that the south side was and continues to be a really important Latino neighborhood,” Allen told us previously. “There’s sort of a sense that the history of Williamsburg starts with some of the largely white artists moving here for cheap rent outside of Manhattan. The reality is that there were communities here before that.”

View the trailer below.

Los Sures Trailer. See it at Metrograph (NYC) April 15–21 from UnionDocs on Vimeo.

H/T: Gothamist

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