99 Homes

Ramin Bahrani is that rare dramatist who understands street-level economics. Raised in North Carolina and educated at Columbia University, the Iranian-American filmmaker made his feature debut with Man Push Cart (2005), the story of a Pakistani immigrant who scrapes through life selling bagels from a cart in midtown Manhattan. Chop Shop (2007), his second feature, followed a 12-year-old Puerto Rican orphan and his older sister as they try to pull together a life for themselves amid the auto garages and scrapyards of Queens. Now there’s Bahrani’s extraordinary new drama, 99 Homes, which takes on the subprime mortgage meltdown of 2008 with its tale of a young man who loses his home in a foreclosure and, desperate for work, becomes the reluctant protege of the very same real estate shark who turned him out. Few other dramas have dared to address the housing bubble that ruined so many Americans, and none with the sense of personal immediacy, of real lives affected, that Bahrani brings to his story. Continue reading >>