Black Picket Fence

Black Picket Fence

5.0 1
Director: Sergio Goes

Cast: Sergio Goes, Kool G Rap, Tislam Milliner

     
 

Tislam "Tiz" Milliner leads a precarious existence in a housing project in Brooklyn's East New York. Locally, he's a rap star, and Tiz dreams of landing a record deal and getting out of the projects. His girlfriend, L'eisha Wilson, is pregnant with his baby, and Tiz struggles to distance himself from his former criminal life and bear his adult responsibilities. His…  See more details below

Overview

Tislam "Tiz" Milliner leads a precarious existence in a housing project in Brooklyn's East New York. Locally, he's a rap star, and Tiz dreams of landing a record deal and getting out of the projects. His girlfriend, L'eisha Wilson, is pregnant with his baby, and Tiz struggles to distance himself from his former criminal life and bear his adult responsibilities. His exuberant manager, Billy Dee, arranges for Tiz to meet with legendary gangsta rapper Kool G Rap, and the two hit it off, offering a glimmer of promise for the future. Meanwhile, Tiz's childhood friend, Mel, gets out of prison and re-enters his life. For Mel, there's no question of what direction to go in. "I won't work," he states bluntly. For Mel, who's spent most of his adult life in prison, there's no other option but crime. Despite their differences in lifestyle and attitude, the two maintain their tight friendship. Black Picket Fence, directed by Sergio Goes, was shown at the 2002 Urbanworld Film Festival, where it received an Honorable Mention in the HBO Documentary Feature Competition.

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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Josh Ralske
Sergio Goes' Black Picket Fence is a compelling and troubling documentary about life in the projects. The film focuses on aspiring rapper Tislam "Tiz" Milliner of East New York, intimately exploring his relationship with his good friend, Mel, a recently paroled drug dealer. There's a chilling moment in the film when Mel calmly describes a robbery he and Tiz committed that ended badly, with Tiz inadvertently shooting Mel in the back. Goes succeeds in giving a sense of the numbing prevalence of violence in these lives. Black Picket Fence, shot on grainy DigiBeta video, is a creditable documentary, but it has its flaws. A scene in which an obese black woman, whose identity is never clearly explained, flashes her breasts at the camera and dances suggestively, seems exploitative, in the manner of television's Cops. And while Tiz and Mel are the film's main subjects, there are a couple of fascinating people on the periphery of their lives that demand more screen time. Tiz's manager, Billy Dee, another parolee, speaks compellingly, if hyperbolically, about Tiz's importance to the community, and his responsibility to succeed. The sole female member of Tiz's rap crew, Brina Ellerbe demonstrates exceptional freestyling skills, and keen insight into the unavoidable sexism of her male peers. While Black Picket Fence is consistently interesting, and lends a humanizing depth to cultural stereotypes about inner city life, the film lacks structure. There doesn't seem to be any narrative import to the point at which the story begins and ends. That said, Black Picket Fence is a worthwhile document of a slice of inner-city life.

Product Details

Release Date:
06/24/2003
UPC:
0014381006629
Original Release:
2002
Rating:
NR
Source:
Image Entertainment
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Full Frame]
Sound:
[Dolby Digital Stereo]
Time:
1:33:00

Special Features

[None specified]

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Cast & Crew

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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Opening [3:54]
2. Winter 1999 [1:01]
3. Tiz [3:53]
4. Mel [3:26]
5. Billy Dee [4:18]
6. Welcome Home [4:04]
7. Spring 2000 [7:47]
8. Mel's World [7:27]
9. Kool G Rap [2:01]
10. Summer 2000 [5:02]
11. Club Large [2:52]
12. Weekly Meeting Minus Tiz [5:39]
13. L'eishia's Baby Shower [7:00]
14. Recording With Kool G Rap [2:28]
15. Fall 2000 [10:04]
16. Mel's New House [3:28]
17. Brooklyn Hospital [3:19]
18. BMI Showcase for Unsigned Artists [3:51]
19. Life in the Suburbs [6:20]
20. End Credits [4:53]

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Black Picket Fence 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
An amazing documentary about lives very rarely presented in public without the stereotipically point of view of many other films... If you liked 8 MILES this movie is a MUST!!! An inside into a world so far apart from mine but only 10 stops away on the subway line... I LOVED IT!!!