South Williamsburg used to be quite a different neighborhood than it is today. Nicknamed "Los Sures" (The Southside) by the Puerto Rican and Dominican immigrants who called it home, this community was one of the poorest in New York and plagued by drugs and violence in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
In 1984, director Diego Echeverria and his crew visited Los Sures. Shooting on 16mm film, Echeverria filmed and documented five different stories over the course of 10 months. His resultant documentary, Los Sures, was largely inaccessible —that is, until now.
Rediscovered in 2007, the film has become a cornerstone program of the Williamsburg arts nonprofit UnionDocs, which not only restored the film but in 2010 began the “Living Los Sures” historical memory project, an expansive documentary project about the Southside of Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
After a spattering of screenings, and a springtime run at Metrograph in Manhattan's Lower East Side, the documentary Los Sures returns home to Brooklyn, for one night only.
Beautifully restored, this film is an invaluable piece of New York City history, increasingly more poignant and critical as Williamsburg continues its transformation and gentrification. Continuing a program of cultural events at Dobbin St designed to support and cultivate the arts community of North Brooklyn, we invite you to join us for this special screening of Los Sures, with a discussion to follow.
As a new events space in Williamsburg, Dobbin St is poised to engage with the neighborhood's history and the culture of a community perhaps lost, save for this cinematic relic. As our neighborhood changes, and newcomers enter the community, it's important that we recognize those who came before us and celebrate the roots of our unique neighborhood in the vast, sweeping conflux of New York City.
Los Sures, Diego Echeverria, USA, 1984, 16mm, 56m
Screening and Community Discussion
at Dobbin St.
Friday, December 9th
Doors at 7pm, Film at 7:30pm
Following the screening, local writer Andy P. Smith will lead a conversation with UnionDocs Founder and Artistic Director Christopher Allen.
Los Sures skillfully represents the challenges of its time: drugs, gang violence, crime, abandoned real estate, racial tension, single-parent homes, and inadequate local resources in Brooklyn’s Los Sures neighborhood. Yet Echeverria’s portrait also celebrates the vitality of this community, showing the strength of their culture, their creativity, and their determination to overcome a desperate situation. Los Sures is both an invaluable record of pre-gentrification Brooklyn and an ode to a community’s resilience.
“An authenticity that has been captured by no fiction film I’ve ever seen.”
– L.A. Weekly
“Both an invaluable record of pre-gentrification Brooklyn and an ode to a community’s resilience.”
“See this neighborhood preserved in amber.”
– The Believer
“Trenchant and eye-opening.”
– The Hollywood Reporter
Los Sures screening at Dobbin St.
Friday, December 9th at 7pm