january 23-30, 2002
greenbelt cinema 1, makati city
metro manila, philippines www.mov.moviespage.com
Richmond, California, 1993. In a small island of run-down buildings behind the shipyards stands the Crabtree pool hall, which seems to defy the industrial transformations of the area. Years ago, a 60-year-old black man named Watson, an ex-GI in Korea, was a pool hustler, but, worn down by heroine abuse, he has left the playing to his sons, Jones and TC, Watson's adopted Chinese-American son. TC is a pool-playing prodigy who holds court at the Crabtree ‹ Jones hustles and TC plays. They limit themselves to taking down marks. Everyone knows TC doesn't have the nerve to take on real competition. TC's white girlfriend, Lois, is the only source of order in a pool hall constantly disrupted by the internecine quarrels of father and sons. She manages the place and keeps Watson's dubious finances from total collapse. Full of energy and ideas, she encourages TC to broaden his horizons beyond this little smoky room, forgotten by time and neglected by fortune. The status quo is threatened when Jones sets up a high-stakes match between TC and Dorian James, a ranked tournament player with a shady background in Asian gangs. But that's when the family learns that Watson is terminally ill...
Chalk is an authentic low-budget ³indie²
production in the American tradition established by Cassavetes, using
professional actors and marginalized non-professionals: the improvisatory
work and the story material based on the personal experiences of the players
furnished the core of this political film which goes against the grain of
mainstream film aesthetics.
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