FLEX IS KINGS: A Full Length Documentary
Directors: Deidre Schoo and Michael Beach Nichols
Editor: Chris Walker
Co-Editor: Mikaela Schwer
Cinematography: Deidre Schoo, Michael Beach Nichols, and Ryan Hancock
Associate Editor: Joshua Wolterman
Full Length Documentary
“Flexing” is a dance style forged in far east Brooklyn, at the dead-end of a handful of subway lines. Flex dancers channel the grittiness and crime of East New York into choreographed violence with gun movements, simulated bone-breaking, and the mimicked ripping of hearts from opponent’s chests. Through battles dancers gain respect, craft an artistic identity, and sometimes find a sanctuary from the poverty and violence that saturates their neighborhood. No other style of street-dance is this violent, scary, or beautifully theatrical. In this purely do-it-yourself scene, creativity and ambition bring a community together around frequent dance-battle showcases that have begun to attract an international audience and may catapult the best dancers into careers in theater or film.
Following a group of dancers for over two years, Flex is Kings explores the hopes and realities of this under-acknowledged and totally unfunded group of urban artists. The inner lives and imaginations of these dancers are visually realized in stylized dance sequences they have created in collaboration with the filmmakers. These stylizations lay a parallel narrative alongside a story of hope and dazzling creativity in a borough that continues to challenge expectations and influence the rest of the country.
Music video for Sealions' track "Golden"
From Strange Veins (Available on iTunes & other online retailers)
Director: Troy Stains
Producer: Jason Travis
Director of Photography: Troy Stains
Styling, Props, Everything Else: Ryan Hancock
Jason Travis, Elise Cullen, Erin Dodd, Chanel Franco, Julia Badovinac, Cassie Lyle, Rachel Pagillo, John Craig, Keith Edmiston, Joey Patino, Becka Cowan, Erin Sillesky, Ryan Hancock