Dir. Edson Jean, USA, 2021, 81 min.
Screening virtually. Learn more here.
“Breasts are never too heavy for those who have them.”
The message appears in both English and Haitian Creole in white font against a black screen, setting the tone for a film with themes of female empowerment and independence. In this feature film, Ludi, a nurse enduring financial struggles, immigrates to Miami’s Little Haiti for a better life, saying that the United States has “so many options. If you don’t like one you just try something else on.”
The relatable, emotional film sheds light on the experiences of working women who immigrate to America, like sending most of their earnings family in their home country.
“They send you here for a better life, but you spend your entire life trying to pay them back,” Ludi says just after falling asleep mid-conversation with a patient, reflecting on the exhausting measures she’s using to do so, such as working overtime.
It also provides an interesting look at the swapping of “gender roles” as this film shows Ludi as the sole breadwinner in her family, a role typically assigned by society to males. Despite this, Ludi still faces the issue of male dominance in the workplace when she is blackmailed after declining a dinner date with a fellow nurse.
Fatigue and stress topped off by a night with a difficult patient lead to Ludi’s emotional breakdown, crying and screaming, “God, I just want to get her this dress!” as she remembers her reason for working so hard: sending her niece, Fafa, money for a graduation dress.
Ludi realizes finally putting herself first may be the best thing.
Find our full guide to RiverRun 2021 here.
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