Contemplating the state of the American education system makes me physically cringe with frustration (see: the fourth season of The Wire, The Instructions, Good.com, or any newspaper anywhere.) Brooklyn Castle puts an engaging face to the struggle for adequately funded schools.
Focusing on the wunderkind chess team at IS 318 in Brooklyn (if Albert Einstein joined, he’d be their third-ranked player. And these kids haven’t hit high school yet), this doc looks at what the chess team, and other after school programs like it, has done for kids in this priority neighbourhood. It follows the players, their families, their teachers, and the administration as they fight to secure a future for themselves and the school in the face of massive budget cuts. Full of heart wrenching characters, including at least two pre-teens we’re seriously hoping run for president, this doc will have you feeling for these kids.
~ Haley Cullingham