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Critical Acclaim for ‘Brooklyn Castle’ – Premieres Tonight on PBS

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Read what critics and journalists have to say about Brooklyn Castle, the POV film that will be airing tonight on PBS (Check local listings). It will be streaming for free on the POV website from Tuesday, October 8 to November 6, 2013.

I.S. 318 in Brooklyn, a powerhouse in junior high chess competitions, has won more than 30 national championships, the most of any school in the country. Its 85-member squad boasts so many strong players that the late Albert Einstein, a dedicated chess maven, would rank fourth if he were on the team. Most astoundingly, I.S. 318 is a Brooklyn school that serves mostly minority students from families living below the poverty line. Brooklyn Castle is the exhilarating story of five of the school’s aspiring young players and how chess became the school’s unlikely inspiration for academic success.

“Irresistible.”
Manohla Dargis, The New York Times

“Funny and moving and full of vivid characters. . . . reminds us that the variety of life is infinite.”
Robert Lloyd, Los Angeles Times

“I love this film.”
— Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

“Enlightening, inspiring and expertly crafted.”
Stephanie Merry, Washington Post

“Brooklyn Castle does a superb job of celebrating the triumph while reinforcing the relentless vigilance it requires from everyone involved.”
David Hinckley, New York Daily News

“If you want to see what may well be the most optimistic, inspiring and downright thrilling movie released all year—then absolutely do not miss . . . Brooklyn Castle.”
Andrew O’Hehir, Salon

“The film is about more than just chess and the chess team. . . . It is about how the team motivates learning at the school even among non-players. Through their dedication to chess, the students of
I.S. 318 win a lot more than . . . multi-tiered blocks of marble and plastic with winged angels on top.”
Mark Walsh, Education Week

“I don’t know diddly about chess, and I still loved it.”
Michael Phillips, Chicago Tribune

“Provides a corrective to the popular image of American schools as obsessed with sports and popularity, and it makes the strongest possible case for funding after-school activities.”
Sarah Boslaugh, PopMatters.com

For updates on POV’s 2013 season, subscribe to POV’s documentary blog, like POV on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @povdocs.

POV Staff
POV Staff
POV (a cinema term for "point of view") is television's longest-running showcase for independent non-fiction films. POV premieres 14-16 of the best, boldest and most innovative programs every year on PBS. Since 1988, POV has presented over 300 films to public television audiences across the country. POV films are known for their intimacy, their unforgettable storytelling and their timeliness, putting a human face on contemporary social issues.
  • PennyB.

    I was so moved by “Brooklyn Castle” It was well done, Finally there is a positive vision , instead of the average film version fighting in hallways, ignoring teachers k& high dropout rates. Devotion of students,teachers, outside mentoring, finally the devotion of parents
    Involved.! The entire program takes away the only “cool&tough”
    Image, students strive to achieve high academic standards. They want to go to college-no prodding or parental excessive pressure.
    Excellent Documentary! Emailing all my friends to watch.
    Thank You so very much.

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