1988, 30 mins.


This joyous, upbeat film explodes with the color, music, and pride of tradition in America's largest Caribbean community. Modeled after the one held "back home" in the islands, this has become an annual event in New York, bringing together Caribbean immigrants from virtually every island in the West Indies. It is filled with striking visual displays of costumed performers, infectious calypso music, steel bands, a mosaic of tropical food, and jumping crowds.

But the film shows more than simply the Caribbean capacity for celebration. It captures the thoughts and feelings of expatriate West Indians, as they are interviewed during preparations leading up to the Carnival. As we go behind the scenes to watch the step-by-step making of the elaborate (and enormous) sculpture-like costumes, we learn how the Carnival is a way of maintaining a sense of identity and continuity of cultural tradition.

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