Film Review: The Promise of New York
by Nigel Chiwaya
Oct 28, 2009 | 24015 views | 3 3 comments | 682 682 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Bloomberg and Thompson may be getting all of the limelight in this year’s Mayoral race, but for disaffected New Yorkers, a new film shows that there is always a little guy.

“The Promise of New York,” an independent film by filmmakers Raul Barcelona and Cassandra Hohn, takes viewers on an inside look at the campaigns of four average New Yorkers as they attempt to run for the mayor’s office in during the 2005 election.

The candidates, political gadfly Christopher Brodeur, comedian-turned-blogger Andy Horowitz, high school math teacher Seth Blum, and artist Chris Riggs, are presented by the film as ordinary people, average New Yorkers, who are dissatisfied with the way the city is being run and decide to take matters into their own hands by running for the top office.

Along the way, the candidates must battle adversity from all sides; fulfilling the necessary requirements for getting on the ballot while fighting for attention from the media and from the other candidates.

Each candidate has their own reasons for running for the city’s top job. Brodeur, who ran in the Democratic primary, previously ran in 2001 as a Green Party candidate, was driven by an intense loathing of four other Democratic candidates. Horowitz’s campaign grew out of a blog post that was picked up by Gawker and the Associated Press. Blum chose to run after Bloomberg ignored his plans for public school reform, and Riggs started his run after learning that summer school lunches were being suspended.

“The [candidates] are inspired by different things that have taken place in the city,” said Barcelona in an interview. “They decide they wanted to do something about it, and they decided to get involved by running for the big job.”

While Brodeur is entertaining, it is the eccentric Riggs who steals the show. Riggs, who appears halfway through the film spewing profanities and flipping birds, is running again for mayor this year.

The promise of New York is available online at and is available on youtube at Highly Recommended.
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Chris Riggs Sucks
June 16, 2014
Chris Riggs is embarassing himself again by claming to be an artist. What a sham. He does excel at art - the art of shameless self promotion.
Cindy Krischer
June 24, 2011
I just bought one of his paintings I love it. What a great artist and politician. Vote Chris Riggs for Mayor this November.
Mike smith
June 24, 2011
Chris Riggs is so funny in this movie im voting for him from now on. Goto ebay and buy his art work it his paintings look amazing.