Dramatic Portraits
"Dramatic portraits" are nonfiction films that reveal characters not through words or images,
clever montage or music, but carefully observed dramatic situations and scenes.
There are 5 restrictions: no interviews; no (added) music; no (quick) montage; no voice-over, no special effects.

These are selected dramatic portraits directed by my MFA students in Directing Nonfiction class

Ramon (2018)
by Jeniffer Hernandezd
7 min.

Ramon Pina, a Dominican immigrant works a quiet deli counter in Queens during the weekdays and as a freelance clown on the weekends, trying to making kids smile, while missing terribly his own five children.
Queen of the Underground (2018)
by Sam Weiss
9 min.

Stand-up comic/New York subway token booth clerk Joanna Briley (50) never stops performing. Whether on stage, underground or at home with her ailing mother, Joanna commands every room, even an empty one.
Queen Elizabeth (2014)
by Lamont Baldwin
24 min.
April (2017)
by Julia Fitzgerald
12 min.

Armed with a puppet or topped with birthday candles, April is a modern New York woman navigating her way through the city one singing telegram at a time.
Dion Cini (2017)
by Albert Negrete
11 min.

Dion walks the streets of New York campaigning for the reelection of Donald Trump in 2020 and spices up the political conversation.
Fit Girl (2014)
by Melissa Rodriguez
23 min.
On Board (2017)
by Cristina Soare
11 min.

Two brothers move to New York and decide to beat the system and live on a bus parked on the Upper West Side.
Ariel (2017)
by Karina Robledo
12 min.

A self made artist struggles to find the balance between her passions and religion.
Labeeb (2018)
by Zubi Ahmed
10.5 min.

Labeeb is a 26 year old Bangladeshi-American learning to communicate with his loving family despite cerebral palsy.
Ray Bang (2018)
by Jon Park
9 min.

Ray Bang is a Korean American bodybuilder living in New York who has 50k subscribes on YouTube. He is determined to succeed even if it appears his only friend is his camera.