Liberty Kid | 2008
Derrick survived his racially divided high school (Blacks vs. Latinos) by passing for both sides. A legal resident alien, born in the Dominican Republic but raised in Brooklyn, Derrick has visions of going to college and getting out of the ghetto. But he's stifled by low-wage jobs, child support payments, and detours into street life. Courted by Army recruiters, Derrick must negotiate his way out of his dead-end lifestyle. Hot-headed Tico is Derrick's best friend and worst adversary, making off with all the girls and ensnaring Derrick in low-grade hustling schemes (from selling drugs to white hipsters to orchestrating fraudulent car accidents) that keep them both trapped in the same place they started. Their volatile friendship is put to the test as they each follow their different paths. Things turn hopeful for Derrick when he earns his GED, but he discovers his only option for affording school may be to enlist in the Army--just months prior to the US invasion of Iraq.