2006-11-10 / Community

Sarnoff's 'Irish Ropes' Screens November 19

Robert Sarnoff, The Wave's editorial cartoonist, has directed a documentary here in the Rockaways. The Irish Ropes follows the journeys of young boxing hopefuls from the Irish Ropes Gym in Arverne to the Golden Gloves Championships at Madison Square Garden.

The audience first meets the young men at the gym, on the dead-end corner of Burchell Avenue and Beach 72 Street. From there we gain insight into their hopes, dreams and fears by meeting their families and following them to the boxing rings around the five boroughs, including The Copacabana.

Along the way we meet John Duddy, a role model to Gary, Sean, Vinny, Luis, Darrius, BJ, Rasheem, Cordelle, Harry and Travis. Duddy is hardworking, affable and available. His fight on the eve of St. Patrick's Day at Madison Square Garden is colorful, inspirational and exciting.

Gerry Cooney, a veteran boxer, also adds color, poetry and wisdom to the documentary. "I have the utmost respect for anyone who takes those four steps and climbs into that ring," says Cooney. He describes what drove him to fight for the Heavyweight Championship.

The film's message of struggle and perseverance is also embodied in Irish Ropes owner, Eddie McLoughlin, who traveled from Derry, Ireland, to turn essentially a cement box, once a garage, into a world-class gym. Mc- Loughlin, whose dream of becoming a champion prize fighter was dashed in a near fatal accident in Ireland, continued his passions for the sport at the gym he created.

The Irish Ropes is now in post production. Dino Tutino was the Director of Photography and Editor. Norman Scott and Joel Hamberger, local residents, assisted in the filming. A short film of the documentary has been edited and completed, and is an official selection in the 2006 Queens International Film Festival. The Irish Ropes will be screened on Sunday, November 19 at 11 a.m. at The Kaufman Studio in Long Island City.

For further information visit the film festival's website at www.queensfilmfestival. com.

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