85 minutes, Color
In San Francisco's Mission District in the late 1960s, a bright Catholic school student, Celina Guerrera (Lorenza Izzo), faces long odds against realizing her potential: a volatile father, a mother who can't protect her, a boyfriend back from Vietnam and pressuring her to have sex ("you don't get pregnant the first time"), and a culture telling her that girls can't amount to anything, or in Janis Joplin's eponymous words, "women is losers." Alone, but now with a baby, in a male-dominated work world, even Celina's smarts work against her—until she makes them work for her. Writer-director-producer Lissette Feliciano, who calls the Mission home, is serious about her subject but playful about educating viewers: Actors break character to tell the history they are portraying and even break out in dance and walk through today's San Francisco without concern for anachronism. Call it Mission School Brecht, call it brilliant.—Judy Bloch
The film won Best Narrative Feature at the Oxford Film Festival.
In English, Spanish with English subtitles
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