Homeless, Not Helpless draws on interviews with homeless individuals in Hudson County and community activists working on their behalf to provide a better understanding of the conditions under which the homeless population lives and the resources, or lack thereof, that are available. Special attention is paid to the importance of non-governmental organizations, particularly religious groups, in providing vital help to and support for this population. Filmed November thru December of 2011, Homeless, Not Helpless gives eyes and ears to the voices from the streets of Jersey City.
AKA Cheese by Makisha Rodriguez and Nandy Santos, is a portrait of a Jersey City graffiti artist, Juan Vasquez. This documentary explores the four major pillars of the Hip-hop culture as seen through the eyes of Vasquez – a.k.a. “Cheese” as he focusses on the street art element, graffiti. Graffiti has been and will forever be surrounded by many controversies between law enforcement and city officials for its underlying social and political messages displayed in public locations. Our challenge in making this documentary is to enlighten people of the importance of the hip-hop culture and how it has inspired a truly original art form. As we learn from Juan Vasquez, graffiti is not limited to words and paint, “it’s an urban revolution."
The Edge of All You Know by Felix Rodriguez, is a portrait of visual artist, Cristina Rutkowski who lives and works in New Jersey. In this piece, she talks about eternal perspective, the risks of creating art and her relationship with the known and unknowable cosmos.
The Hoboken Batman by Marco Vidal, is a portrait of Marlon Rodriguez, a Cuban immigrant that moved to America to be free and live his life by entertaining and helping others. Since 2006 his local celebrity status has increased and this documentary was made to help tell his story. Marlon's life is an offbeat portrait of the American dream.