Sugar Cane Alley [VHS]

Euzhan Palcy
Touching without being sentimental, political without being preachy, this story set in 1930s Martinique is both lyrical and powerful. Writer-director Euzhan Palcy tells the story of a young boy who is orphaned at the age of 11 and sent to live with his grandmother, who works on one of the island's sugar cane plantations. Though he is bright, she realizes he has no future if he stays on the plantation. So she does what she can to keep him in school and away from the back-breaking, will-sapping hard labor to which she's devoted her life. Can he rise above his humble beginnings? Will he forget about his self-sacrificing grandmother and leave her behind? Palcy deals with these issues with great emotion but no false sentimentality in this poignant film. In French with English subtitles.

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