The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston

Sugar Cane Alley

Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019 – Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019

07:00 PM – 09:00 PM


Sugar Cane Alley begins with sepia-toned postcards views of old Martinique, as if to emphasize that the film which follows is going to take us far beyond nostalgic distance and exotic local color. An audience pleaser as well as an adventurous work of cinema, Euzhan Palcy's Sugar Cane Alley established her as a major new filmmaking talent. Set in 1931 Martinique, the film paints a rich impasto of native life under French colonial rule, filtered through the coming-of-age of a bright, sweetly opportunistic black boy learning to reconcile the value of his shanty-town roots with the educational opportunities that beckon him to the big city. Although Palcy displays a masterful command of storytelling, atmosphere, comedy, and characterization, this rainbow of a movie is anything but sedate and old-fashioned: keyed on kinetic, offbeat cutting rhythms that refract the graceful arc of the action into pointillist flurries of movement, textures and color, it achieves a blend of artful casualness, unsentimental humanism, and clear- eyed social consciousness whose like has perhaps not been seen since the early masterpieces of Jean Renoir and Vittorio De Sica. Adapted from Joseph Zobel's 1950 novel La Rue Cases-Nègres.

Film followed by Q&A with director Euzhan Palcy.

About the speaker: When she directed Sugar Cane Alley in 1983, Euzhan Palcy put the French Caribbean on the cinematography map, winning The Silver Lion, Best Actress Award at the Venice International Film Festival and a Cesar (French Oscar), breaking the directorial glass ceiling in French cinema. She continued her journey as a film trailblazer in 1989 with A Dry White Season, a bracing drama made at the height of apartheid, and in so doing became the first black female director produced by a Hollywood studio, MGM/ UA. Among her other films is the colorful musical fantasy Simeon.

Tickets: $12    Buy tickets here.


  • Tuesday - Wednesday, 10:00 am - 5:00 pm
    Thursday, 10:00 am - 9:00 pm
    Friday - Saturday, 10:00 am - 7:00 pm
    Sunday, 12:15 pm - 7:00 pm
    Monday: Closed (Except Monday Holidays). Closed Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day.
  • General Admission

    • MFAH Members FREE
    • Adults $15
    • Seniors (65+ with ID) $10
    • Military (with ID) $10
    • College Students (19+ with ID) $7.50
    • Youth (13–18) $7.50
    • Children (12 & younger) FREE
    • Certain special exhibitions are ticketed, with an additional charge.
    On Thursday, general admission is free for everyone.

Directions & Parking

  • Free Parking
  • Paid Parking
  • Street Parking
  • Make visiting a snap! Visit mfah.org/parking for complete parking info, including a map you can download.

    Two Parking Garages        

    Parking Garage Hours

    Open daily from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m.

    Parking Garage Fees

    • Parking payments may be made only with major credit cards, or with MasterCard and Visa debit cards.
    • The first 30 minutes are always free. On Thursday, parking is free for visitors who enter the Museum between 5 p.m. and 9 p.m.
    • For hourly rates, go to mfah.org/parking
    Recommendation for guests with limited mobility: Use the covered drop-off lane at the Main Street entrance to the Beck Building, or use wheelchair-accessible parking in the garage at 1144 Binz Street.

Special Offers / Dining

Paolo Fronza, from Fellini Caffè, runs this sophisticated dining operation. Enjoy an array of Italian-inspired fare with a Texas flair, a European-style coffee bar, a kids menu, and much more at the MFA Café, located on the lower level of the Beck Building.

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