By Guetty FELIN


Drama - Development 2020

A story of love, family and secrets set against the backdrop of New York in the tumultuous 70's.

& Awards

cinefondation 2018
    • Year of production
    • 2020
    • Genres
    • Drama
    • Countries
    • Languages
    • Budget
    • 1 - 3 M$
    • Duration
    • 105 mn
    • Director(s)
    • Guetty FELIN
    • Writer(s)
    • Guetty FELIN
    • Producer(s)
    • Murielle THIERRIN (Aldabra Films)
    • Synopsis
    • After the brutal assassination of his colleague LOUIS, HECTOR CELESTIN, a brilliant lawyer at the Haitian Ministry of Finance is forced into exile with his entire family, leaving behind them the Duvalier dictatorship’s spiral of violence. In the Winter of ‘74, the Celestin clan (Hector and his wife MARITHÉ, her mother MAMOU, and the children: the teenage twins NORA and NATHANAEL and the little sister, OLIE) settles into a huge apartment between Black and Spanish Harlem in New York City.

      The aftermath of the Vietnam War, the women’s rights movement, Black is Beautiful, high unemployment, youth culture, the power of television, drugs and political cynicism make 1970s America a place of great confusion and chaos for this close-knit family. Hector lives in the hope of soon returning home and makes no effort to integrate or assimilate. But when he finds out his house in Haiti has been firebombed and that the violence there is far from abating, he is forced to reconsider his life in America. Unable to find work as a lawyer, he eventually accepts his brother’s offer to work as a clerk in a bottle factory in Long Island.

      Time passes. As the parents wallow in nostalgia and accept their condition as political exiles, America, for the children, becomes a place for new encounters and enriching experiences. Nora kindles a secret friendship with the extravagant MR. CONSTANT, an elderly Haitian transplanted in New York since the 1940’s, who lives a floor below them with his pet rooster, Charlie. Mamou, the grandmother, pining for her beautiful garden, constantly pesters the family to return to Haiti. She is finally appeased by a new piano on which she finds solace in giving lessons to Olie.

      Life in America is not easy for the Celestins, but it is filled with love and a strong sense of loyalty towards one another, until one day a character from the past interrupts their lives.