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'Brooklyn Castle' doc follows inner-city middle school chess champions

Art from the film
Art from the film "Brooklyn Castle."
Brooklyn Castle

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Remember cheering on the students in the documentary "Spellbound," and wincing in pain during the ballet film "First Position"?

Now you can furrow your brow and slam a time clock along with the young champion chess players featured in the new movie, "Brooklyn Castle."

BROOKLYN CASTLE from Rescued Media on Vimeo.

The new documentary profiles the remarkable chess program at Brooklyn I.S. 318, an inner city New York middle school where it’s cool to play chess.

Director Katie DellaMaggiore follows a group of students through a year of triumphs and challenges as the formidable chess team seeks to win the National championship, despite cuts to afterschool programs prompted by the great recession. Many of their families are living below the poverty line, and their school has been hit with a million dollar budget cut. In the meantime, these kids have won more chess titles than any school in the country.

We're joined by the film's director Katie DellaMaggiore, and one of the subjects of the film, Alexis Paredes.

Brooklyn Castle opens in theaters in Los Angeles today, and other venues nationwide.

Teachers in Los Angeles and New York can see the film for free this weekend:

Click here for more info.