Ramin Bahrani's "Man Push Cart."
Ramin Bahrani's "Man Push Cart."

Pushcart world and Latin festival

Posted October 12, 2006

It's 3 am in Manhattan, the hour of rumbling garbage trucks, glaring headlights, and the bluish florescent glow of the all-night delis. Trudging alongside the honking traffic, Ahmad drags a coffee and bagel cart to a busy midtown corner. Hours later, he is swiftly and efficiently selling steaming cups of "coffee regular" to rushing New Yorkers. In the afternoons, he battles traffic to return the cart to a warehouse, occasionally peddling bootleg DVDs for extra cash along the way. A solitary, quiet loner, Ahmad strikes up slightly awkward friendships with Noemi, a young Spanish woman who works at a newsstand, and wealthy, jovial Mohammad, who is shocked when he realizes Ahmad was a famous singer in Pakistan. Through Ahmad's relationships with both his new friends and his estranged family, we come to understand that he is haunted by a tragedy in his past.

A beautifully crafted character study that captures the textures of a very specific New York experience, Ramin Bahrani's "Man Push Cart" is a subtle, insightful portrait of a man struggling with issues of identity, self-worth, and the harsh realities of finding a place to belong in a vast, often-unfriendly American metropolis.

Martha's Vineyard Film Society presents "Man Push Cart" Saturday, Oct. 14, 7:30 pm, Katharine Cornell Theatre, Spring Street, Vineyard Haven. Tickets $6 or $4 for members. This film is not rated; 87 minutes.

LatinBeat 2006 festival

Emerging Pictures, a New York-based digital cinema network, will present nine films from the LatinBeat 2006 festival at the Island Theater in Oak Bluffs the week of Oct. 22. The films are from the United States, Argentina, Mexico, Chile, Bolivia, Cuba, and Venezuela.

The nine films are: "The Asphalt Virgin," The Tropicalist Revolution," "El Caracazo," "For Rent," "Nine Queens," "To The Other Side," "Mi Mambo," "Through Your Eyes," and "Revolucion: Five Visions." u

LatinBeat 2006 begins Sunday, Oct. 22, times and dates TBA, Island Theater, Circuit Avenue, Oak Bluffs. Tickets are $6 or $25 for the series. For more information, call 508-939-9399.