Prince of Broadway (2010) - Rotten Tomatoes

Prince of Broadway (2010)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

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Movie Info

"Prince of Broadway" is the story of Lucky and Levon, two men whose lives converge in the underbelly of New York's wholesale fashion district. Lucky, an illegal immigrant from Ghana, makes ends meet by soliciting shoppers on the street with knock-off brand merchandise. Levon, an Armenian-Lebanese immigrant, operates an illegal storefront. Lucky's world is suddenly turned upside down when a child is thrust into his life by a woman who insists the toddler is his son. While Lucky copes with his new domestic dilemma, Levon struggles to save a marriage that is falling apart. The seedy side of the wholesale district is revealed through a journey that continually confronts the interplay between what is fake and what is real.more
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Art House & International, Drama
Directed By: ,
Written By: Sean Baker (II) , Sean Baker, Darren Dean
In Theaters:
On DVD: Jan 1, 2011
Box Office: $20.4k
Elephant Eye Films - Official Site


Pascal Menard
as Delicious
Brea Cola
as Serena
Roger Harkavy
as Defense Attorney
Stephen L. Baker
as Copyright Lawyer
Kurt Leitner
as Prosecutor
Tony Roach
as DNA Test Doctor
Roger Majkowski
as Officer Mahoney
Joel Saladilio
as Plainclothes Cop
Mark Newell
as Plainclothes Cop
DJ Bluesky
as Delicious's Wife
Beatriz Cano
as DNA Test Receptionis...
Jesse Perez
as Uniform Cop
Adam Kidd
as Tough Guy in Club
Chris Bergoch
as Snowbound Victim
Michael O'Hagan
as Snowbound Victim's G...
Jeannette Benjamin
as Waitress in African ...
Shahir Ajij
as Waiter in Indian Res...
Babul Das
as Waiter in Indian Res...
Renee Freilich
as Lady in Indian Resta...
Camille Lafaso
as Lady in Indian Resta...
Daniel Paltrowitz
as Man in Indian Restau...
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News & Interviews for Prince of Broadway

Critic Reviews for Prince of Broadway

All Critics (18) | Top Critics (6)

Director Sean Baker's fascinating, impossible-to-categorize film relies on handheld cameras, improvised dialogue, jump cuts and a very photogenic arena, the city's wholesale fashion district.

Full Review… | January 10, 2013
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic

It's an undeniably small yet almost indefinable film, warmhearted and bittersweet, laced with both humor and tough emotions.

Full Review… | September 24, 2010
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Off-formula and on-point, the story's emotional jabs are all the more poignant for their unpredictability.

Full Review… | September 3, 2010
New York Times
Top Critic

The film seethes with naturalistic cred.

Full Review… | August 31, 2010
Village Voice
Top Critic

Streetwise, kinetic and solidly dramatic.

Full Review… | October 18, 2008
Top Critic

Full Review… | September 2, 2010
Time Out
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Prince of Broadway

"Prince of Broadway" is an admirable but dull film. It heroically chronicles the hardscrabble life of poor immigrants in New York City, but it doesn't have much of a story to tell about them.

Lucky, the main character, is an illegal immigrant (from Africa, it seems) who ekes out a meager living by selling counterfeit luxury items, a major trade in NYC. His life is turned upside-down when a former girlfriend shows up one day and hands him a baby. "He's your son," she says. He struggles to hand the baby back, but to no avail. He stands there shell-shocked, not even knowing how to hold a child much less parent one.

This is great subject matter, but writer/director Sean Baker doesn't really know what to do with it. Watching this uneducated man struggle to learn to take care of a baby doesn't make for compelling cinema after about 20 minutes.

Baker is a master of ethnographic cinema, capturing the look and feel of a particular social milieu. He presents the New York under-class with the same kind of deep, gritty authenticity that Lee Daniels did in 'Precious.' Alas, capturing a look and feel is only part of a movie-making project. There also has to be a great screenplay with a great story. Baker really disappoints here. He may be a great director, but he's no screenwriter.

Still, I'm very pleased that 'Prince of Broadway' finally found a distributor two years after the film was finished. No doubt this was all due to Lee Daniels, who agreed to let his name be used in the marketing campaign. In all the movie ads I've seen, "Lee Daniels Presents" appears above the title. We desperately need more hand-made films like this and more filmmakers like Baker and Daniels, who are willing to forgo a life of riches to tell stories about the poor.

"Prince" may not be a perfect film, but cinephiles from coast to coast must support it to send a message that films with subject matter like this are marketable. If a market for films like this opens up, we would no doubt get some better specimens of the genre quickly. Support hand-made working-class cinema!

Bill D 2007
William Dunmyer

Super Reviewer


Prince of Broadway tells the story of a "street rat" named Lucky. He's from Ghana and is living, illegally, in New York City and participating in the lucrative (for the wholesaler, not the street vendor), illegal, industry of selling counterfeit fashion merchandise.

Along the way, we see how depressed his lifestyle is. He lives in squalor in a dilapidated studio apartment in Harlem. He has a nice girlfriend who, for some reason, stands by this loser despite his being irresponsible, vulgar and an all-around uneducated macho pig.

Well, along the way comes a little boy to change Lucky's life forever. One of Lucky's former flings drops by and demands that he take some responsibility for his half of the creature. Not surprisingly, Lucky is dumbfounded and tries to evade his duties as father. But he is forced to live the the child as his mother has all but left the little one at the mercy of this stunted adult.

After a while, Lucky's incessant denial to own up to his responsibility as father and contributing adult gets a little old. His reluctance to accept the child and his negligence is a little hard to watch as the little one gets tossed around like a rag doll with no regard to his own feelings. In essence, what are supposed to come off as endearing, funny little moments come off as annoying and unbearable to endure when it's at the expense of a defenseless toddler.

But, I guess the message of this film is to depict that "upstanding" individuals such as Lucky and his uncouth clan of friends and former lovers actually exist. The stunted development of a child into adulthood is a theme that is prevalent to the point of having it clobber you on the head. The incessant belligerence of the main character antagonizes him to the point where you wish he would actually get shot or run over by a bus or something--but, in all likelihood (and in accordance to his display of negligence) it would be his son who would undoubtedly suffer such a gross fate.

Rico Zamora

Super Reviewer

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