Carnival Meets Bollywood in Machel Montano starring in “Bazodee” – Caribbean Film Series, September 7th at BAMcinématek
Soca music superstar Machel Montano makes his film debut in this classic love story set in modern day Trinidad & Tobago
press release pic
August 12, 2016/Brooklyn, NY – Trinidad is known for more than sandy beaches and tropical flavor – it is also the birthplace of Soca, an increasingly popular soul & funk music version of standard Calypso music. And the leading voice in Soca, singer/songwriter Machel Montano, has now stepped into acting, parlaying his musical drive into drama for the new film “Bazodee,” showing at BAMcinematek just days after New York City’s West Indian Carnival celebrations.
In the film, dutiful Indian daughter Anita Panchouri (Natalie Perera), a native Trinidadian, is set to marry a wealthy suitor from England (Staz Nair) in order to get her businessman father (Kaber Bedi,
“Octopussy”) out of a deep debt. However, a chance encounter withlocal singer Lee de Leon (Montano) sets things askew for Natalie, and when Lee ends upperforming at the new couple’s engagement party, the nascent feelings between her and Lee blossom, leading to the ultimate form of ‘bazodee’ – dizzying love and sensations. With the excitement of Carnival approaching, Anita must now choose between the loveless marriage that will be the answer to her family’s financial prayers or the possibility of real
Filmed entirely in Trinidad & Tobago and filled with the pulsating dance rhythms of soca music, “Bazodee” is a new style Bollywood musical with distinct Caribbean island flavor, that also slyly plays with some of the ongoing racial politics in Trinidad.  “Being able to present “Bazodee” to Brooklyn audiences is very special,” exclaims Romola Lucas, co-founder of The Caribbean Film Academy (CaFA).  She continues that, ”With the film co-starring Afro-Caribbean and Indo-Caribbean actors, and presenting Bollywood style theatrics with modern Afro-Caribbean nuances, both styles of which native Caribbean people have watch have enjoyed across racial and social lines for decades, is the ideal here in the States. We look forward to our audiences experience this …
and Machel!”
Co-presented by BAMcinématek and the Brooklyn Cinema Collective, “Bazodee” will screen at BAM Rose Cinemas on Wednesday, September 7th at 7:30pm. A Q&A will follow the film. The short film “Cleaning House” (14 min – 2013), by Jamaican writer and director Toni Blackford, precedes the film.
For ticket information go to For overall information about the Caribbean Film Series and the Caribbean Film Academy contact Romola Lucas, at or Brooklyn Cinema Collective’s Curtis Caesar John, at
Directed by Todd Kessler
with Machel Montano, Natalie Perera, Kabir Bedi, Valmike Rampersad, Staz Nair
100 min. | USA/Trinidad & Tobago | 2016
Anita Panchouri (Perera), the dutiful Indian daughter of a deep in debt businessman is set to marry a wealthy suitor when a chance encounter with a local singer, Lee de Leon (Soca music superstar Machel Montano in his film debut) sets things askew. In search of a muse, de Leon agrees to perform at the engagement party, but their mutual attraction is undeniable. With the excitement of Carnival approac
hing, Anita must now choose between the loveless marriage that will be the answer to her family’s financial prayers or the possibility of real love.
Preceded by
Directed by Toni Blackford
14 minutes | Jamaica | 2013
At a glance, Susan is a quiet, pensive housecleaner who takes her job seriously. A single phone call is all she needs to clean up the mess and leave things pristine. But, initial impressions rarely, if ever, give the full scope of a person — especially in the case of Susan.
About the Caribbean Film Academy
Established in 2012, The Caribbean Film Academy (CaFA), is a non-profit organization dedicated to the promotion and support of Caribbean filmmaking and filmmakers, in the region and the diaspora. CaFA’s work is focused on promoting and sharing the art of storytelling through film from the unique perspective of the Caribbean.
About The Brooklyn Cinema Collective
The Brooklyn Cinema Collective (BCC) is a media consulting non-profit company helmed by Curtis Caesar John, a media-maker and arts manager operating out of New York City.  Under BCC, Curtis founded the Bedford-Stuyvesant microcinema, The Luminal Theater, which provides screening space and curated film programs with a focus on African diasporic cinema. Most recently, Curtis served as Festival Director of New Voices in Black Cinema, a film festival he helped create, that takes place at BAMcinématek and brought audiences the NYC premieres of such films as Neil Drumming’s, Big Words and Alain Gomis’, Tey.
About BAMcinématek
The four-screen BAM Rose Cinemas (BRC) opened in 1998 to offer Brooklyn audiences alternative and independent films that might not play in the borough otherwise, making BAM the only performing arts center in the country with two mainstage theaters and a multiplex cinema. In July 1999, beginning with a series celebrating the work of Spike Lee, BAMcinématek was born as Brooklyn’s only daily, year-round repertory film program. BAMcinématek presents new and rarely seen contemporary films, classics, work by local artists, and festivals of films from around the world, often with special appearances by directors, actors, and other guests. BAMcinématek has not only presented major retrospectives by major filmmakers such as Michelangelo Antonioni, Manoel de Oliveira, Shohei Imamura, Vincente Minnelli (winning a National Film Critics’ Circle Award prize for the retrospective), Kaneto Shindo, Luchino Visconti, and William Friedkin, but it has also introduced New York
audiences to contemporary artists such as Pedro Costa and Apichatpong Weerasethakul.
In addition, BAMcinématek programmed the first US retrospectives of directors Arnaud Desplechin, Nicolas Winding Refn, Hong Sang-soo, and An drzej Zulawski.
General Information
BAM Rose Cinemas is located in the Peter Jay Sharp building at (between St Felix Street and Ashland Place).  Subway: 2, 3, 4, 5, Q, B to Atlantic Avenue; D, M, N, R to Pacific Street; G to Fulton Street;
C to Lafayette Avenue
Train: Long Island Railroad to Flatbush Avenue
Bus: B25, B26, B41, B45, B52, B63, B67 all stop within three blocks of BAM
Car: Commercial parking lots are located adjacent to BAM
For ticket and BAM bus information, call BAM Ticket Services at 718.636.4100, or visit
For group ticket information, call BAM Ticket Services at 718.636.4100, or visit