Foreign Parts (2011)
Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.
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A hidden enclave in the shadow of the New York Mets' new stadium, the neighborhood of Willets Point is an industrial zone fated for demolition. Filled with scrapyards and auto salvage shops, lacking sidewalks or sewage lines, the area seems ripe for urban development. But Foreign Parts discovers a strange community where wrecks, refuse and recycling form a thriving commerce. Cars are stripped, sorted and cataloged by brand and part, then resold to an endless parade of drive-thru customers. Joe, the last original resident, rages and rallies through the street like a lost King Lear, trying to contest his imminent eviction. Two lovers, Sara and Luis, struggle for food and safety through the winter while living in an abandoned van. Julia, the homeless queen of the junkyard, exalts in her beatific visions of daily life among the forgotten. The film observes and captures the struggle of a contested "eminent domain" neighborhood before its disappearance under the capitalization of New York's urban ecology. -- (C) Official Site … More
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Critic Reviews for Foreign Parts
A busy, complicated world within the space of few unlovely city blocks.
The observational spirit of Frederick Wiseman hangs over the initial scenes of Verena Paravel and J.P. Sniadecki's heartbreaking doc about the auto shops and junkyards of Willets Point, Queens.
Foreign Parts engages in sociological inquiry without narration or contextual handholding, utilizing incisive, striking aesthetics (a panorama of hanging side mirrors, worn shoes trudging through grimy puddles) to elicit potent subcultural immersion.
These are good people, rough-edged but pleasant, depicted while not romanticized.
Audience Reviews for Foreign Parts
Observational and extremely slow-paced in nature. These few blocks abutting Flushing's Citi Field are a gritty & neglected bazaar of auto chop shops and auto parts vendors, yet they're no denying they provide the city with a valuable service. It was interesting to see close up who the unusual people are that make up the backbone of this type of neighborhood & work. Even more interesting to see that it is endeared by some, enough to try to halt the City's plan to raze it, in order to beautify the view from Citi Field. Eighty minutes was a bit too long of a view, however, and it is pure observation, no narration, no plotline, no conclusion. Worth watching if you think it might interest you, but keep your thumb on the fast forward button.
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