“Popi” at Handball Court Summer Film Festival




East 106th Street, between Lexington and Third Avenues

This summer, MediaNoche’s Handball Court Summer Film Festival will present vintage films that screened in Spanish Harlem four decades ago. While today not a single theater remains, there once were six within a 20 block radius of the handball court on East 106th Street: The Azteca on 102nd Street and Madison Avenue, The Eagle on Third Avenue, between 102nd and 103rd Streets, La Estrella on 107th and Lexington Avenue, El Paraiso (El Meito) on Madison Avenue and 116th Street, the Cosmos on 116th Street, between Third and Lexington Avenues, and The Sun on Third Avenue and 118th Street. During their heyday, they were multipurpose theaters where film screenings were scheduled along with live performances.

These theaters showcased an international roster of actors, singers and other entertainers from the Caribbean and Latin America, appealing to the tastes of the Puerto Rican diaspora which by the sixties had become a significant market for Latino entertainment in the Northeast. The vintage films reflect a long term relationship between the Puerto Rican community and its Latin American entertainers. Lucha Libre films, the Mexican genre featuring a wrestler as superhero, for example, are fondly remembered by Spanish Harlem residents — and currently satirized in the new Hollywood film Nacho Libre. In addition, films shot in Spanish Harlem will also be featured.


July 1 — Santo contra Capulina, comedy in Spanish
July 8 — Tin Tan’s La Marca del Zorrillo, comedy in Spanish
July 15 — The Pawnbroker, drama in English
July 22 — Ansiedad, drama in Spanish with Pedro Infante and Libertad Lamarque
July 29 — Cantinflas’ Romeo y Julieta, comedy in Spanish
August 5 — Our Latin Thing, musical concert in Spanish with English subtitles
August 12 — Santo contra las mujeres vampiros, English dubbed version
August 19 — Popi, drama in English
August 26 — Crossover Dreams, drama in English

For more information call: 212.828.0401 or email info@prdream.com

MediaNoche is a project of PRdream.com. We reserve the right to modify the film program without prior notice.
Program notes by Judith Escalona, Film Curator — ©jescalona2006 All Rights Reserved

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