“Between the booming soundtrack and the stunning localized cinematography, the film finds an amazing voice… The educational potential in the movie is astounding” – Anderson Vision

This is the story of Milagros Baez, a Puerto Rican woman in Spanish Harlem who longs for a different life. While she spends her days and nights working at a local grocery market, she secretly fantasizes about going to college and becoming a writer. But in her world, this is not a realistic goal. With no one on her side, she is resigned to living in the projects of El Barrio for the rest of her life. With no one to believe in her, Millie doesn’t even believe in herself.

When Millie meets Mateo, a former Young Lord, her life is transformed. As he slowly shares with Millie all of his knowledge and experiences with the Puerto Rican revolutionary group,The Young Lords, she discovers an inner strength and passion that she never knew was there. Mateo’s encouragement and belief in Millie give her a new found sense of possibility, and little by little, her life begins to change. Inspired by the model of the Young Lords Party, Millie is able to overcome her fears and become the woman that she was meant to be.

Incorporating original presentations from the founding members of the Young Lords Party with a deeply emotional story written by Jennica Carmona, Millie and the Lords is an inspiring motion picture about one woman’s journey from isolation and helplessness to millie-still1strength and empowerment.

Millie and the Lords incorporates documentary material and inventive cinematography that honors the legacy of the Young Lords Party.

About Palante-Young Lords Party

The Young Lords were a revolutionary political organization that formed in New York City in the summer of 1969 and whose influence rapidly spread to Puerto Rican communities throughout the country and to Puerto Rico itself.


  1. Through Millie’s eyes we get a sense of the Young Lords’ past, their impact and immense contribution to the Latino community. The film weaves in archival footage and stills, reminding us throughout that though this is a work of fiction, real people, places and events, inspired it. The film was shot in and around the neighborhood where it all happened, El Barrio, and includes some scenes in one of NYC’s most lauded bookstores.
  2. There are performances from surviving members of the Young Lords like Felipe Luciano, who plays himself and acts as a the head of an community center in El Barrio that is under threat of losing its funding. There are also snippets of interviews with members like Jose Cha Cha Jimenez, who founded the Lords, and Luis Garden Acosta, who now runs a leadership center called El Puente in Williamsburg.
  3. The production boasts an incredibly diverse cast and crew; the movie looks just like New York looks to us pedestrians. Funding for the film was raised via various crowd-sourcing campaigns. In short, it’s a true example of small-budget indie filmmaking. And of course, being reminded of the ways people put themselves in jeopardy for the sake of our civil rights, will move you off your butt and onto the pavement.
  4. The soundtrack features some great tracks by Rebel Diaz, that bump and gleam with defiance. There is also a beautiful rendition of Cucurrucucu Paloma by Perla Batalla, that will get you all reflective and teary-eyed.
  5. By blending of the past and the present, Millie and the Lords is a great expression of how these battles for justice don’t end; they continue past presidencies and amendments. We should be grateful for the work of those who came before but also recognize that they left a big legacy for us to live up to.

A Film by Jennica Carmona / 90 minutes on 1 disc / NC-17 / 2015 / English, Spanish w/ English subtitles.


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