I just watched “759: Boy Scouts of Harlem” which is a great documentary Scout film by Jake Boritt and Justin Szlasa about a Boy Scout Troop 759. The film is 72 minutes long. I found the film reminding me of my first year at Summer Camp as a young lad, including the fears I had and the triumphs I made. The film honestly depicts inner city Scouting and what summer camp is like for them. In a tactful way it dives into the personalities of the Scouts. It shows the fears of a young Scout and how he grows in the water and on the ropes. We all know how older Scouts are when around when “ladies”. In one of the scenes it talks about certain gestures that the campers are making toward two young ladies who work in the kitchen, and get that embarrassed "oh cr*p" look we have been caught, when two Scouts are questioned about it on camera.
On the film's website it says this about the film:
Be prepared to be amazed as Scout Troop 759 heads from the streets of Harlem to the woods of Camp Keowa. Eleven year old new scout Keith Dozier spends his first week at camp facing the challenges of the woods - the dock test in the deep dark lake, creepy creatures of the night, the daunting climbing tower, the raucous dining hall and the seductive Siberian sirens in the kitchen. With help from his fellow scouts K.C., Devon and Manny and wise Scoutmaster Sowah, young Keith faces the challenges and earns his place as a Scout.
759: Boy Scouts of Harlem is a warm, tender, funny upbeat documentary about Scouting in an unexpected place. The film is available on home video. To set up a screening for your community, Council or Troop please click here.
There is no doubt that this film is warm, tender, funny and yet at the same time can bring tears out of a grown man. Not tears of sadness or even joy, but rather of fond memories long past ... but also like, well I guess, a father watching his young son grow and overcome his fears. I will admit, for some unexplained reason I found myself cheering and urging Keith on.
759: Boy Scouts of Harlem is one of those films that reminds us all what Scouting is really all about. To find out more watch the preview to the right and go to http://www.harlemscouts.com/