First up we take a look at urban farming with URBAN FRUIT. Exploring the lives and passions of a handful of urban farmers in Los Angeles, it explores the health benefits and positive community it creates. It also explores the sometimes bizarre and ridiculous zoning laws that forbid it (thankfully, as a coda to the movie, much of this is changing.) An interesting and ultimately positive experience about reclaiming a connection with the land where you live. Good stuff.
And then we take a bizarre journey with BRONX OBAMA. Louis Ortiz lives in the Bronx, is a liberal Democrat like most of his neighbors, and during the 2008 election had friends tell him that he kind of looked like Obama with a goatee. So he shaved off his goatee and...he's the spitting image of the man! So on election night, just by walking around looking like the new President-elect, he was bought several drinks. And his new career started. We see his impersonation career grow from just standing on the corner with a sign offering to get your picture taken with the President to a full-on political comedy tour in 2012 with a Romney impersonator and a Bill Clinton impersonator (the veteran, who knows the racket and bemoans that fact that Clinton has gone vegan, lost a lot of weight, and made looking like him so much harder.) Well, that tour gets to be something of a nightmare, as the organizer is right-winger who books them at a bunch of Tea Party events and forces him to make disparaging jokes about a guy he still supports. It's a true American Dream story--realize you have a marketable skill (or at least the look of a lifetime) and cash in on it, only to realize you have to compromise a hell of a lot of what's important to you just to make a living. Still, it's a heck of a funny story.
Total Running Time: 162 minutes
My Total Minutes: 366,092