via press release:
MONDAYS AT RACINE, VISITING A LONG ISLAND BEAUTY SALON WHERE
TWO SISTERS EMPOWER WOMEN WITH CANCER, DEBUTS OCT. 14
DURING BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH, EXCLUSIVELY ON HBO
Sisters Rachel Demolfetto and Cynthia Sansone watched their mother grow reclusive and depressed as she battled breast cancer in the 1980s. Today, inspired by her struggle, they open the doors of their Long Island beauty salon once a month to women diagnosed with cancer, helping them feel beautiful while they fight the illness. Presented during Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the uplifting documentary MONDAYS AT RACINE follows the sisters and several cancer patients as they navigate the emotional and physical changes of the disease when it debuts MONDAY, OCT. 14 (9:00-9:40 p.m. ET/PT), exclusively on HBO. Cynthia Wade (the Oscar®-winning CINEMAX documentary “Freeheld”) directs.
Other HBO playdates: Oct. 15 (5:15 a.m.), 18 (11:30 a.m.), 20 (1:30 p.m.), 21 (5:30 p.m.) and 26 (4:15 p.m.)
HBO2 playdates: Oct. 16 (8:00 p.m.), 19 (5:15 a.m.) and 24 (6:00 a.m.)
MONDAYS AT RACINE is one three nominees for this year’s Documentary Short Subject Oscar® debuting back-to-back Oct. 14 on HBO, along with “Redemption,” debuting at 9:40 p.m., and “Open Heart,” which debuts at 10:20 p.m. Other October presentations in the HBO Documentary Films fall series include “Valentine Road” (Oct. 7), “Life According to Sam” (Oct. 21) and “Seduced and Abandoned” (Oct. 28).
The toll chemotherapy takes on a woman is physically exhausting, and can also be devastating to her identity. Many wake up with clumps of hair on their pillow, and without hair, one woman states, “You feel like you’re being erased.” Rachel Demolfetto and Cynthia Sansone witnessed such dramatic changes in their mother’s appearance, as well as the waning of her sense of self.
MONDAYS AT RACINE spotlights an unusual salon that provides free beauty treatments – hair, makeup, manicures and pedicures – to cancer patients one Monday a month. The goal is to give them a sense of normalcy and support, and in doing so, combat the fear that accompanies the disease.
The documentary profiles several Racine’s regulars. Cambria, 36, has recently been diagnosed with an aggressive form of breast cancer, which shakes her young, growing family to its core. At the time of filming, Linda, 58, had been beating the odds for 17 years. Their friendship sustains Cambria through chemotherapy, a double mastectomy, radiation and the demands of being a mother.
Cancer robs many women of the ability to be the person they once were, but the sisters are determined to help, with a little bit of blush and a lot of handholding. As one woman says after a makeover, “I feel like me again.” Together, they redefine their understanding of beauty, as well as their roles as mothers, wives and women.
In addition to “Freeheld,” Cynthia Wade’s credits include HBO’s “Shelter Dogs” and CINEMAX’s “Grist for the Mill.”
For more information, visit: Facebook: facebook.com/hbodocs; Twitter: @HBODocs #MondaysAtRacine.
MONDAYS AT RACINE was directed and produced by Cynthia Wade; produced by Robin Honan; edited by David Teague; cinematography by Cynthia Wade and David Teague; music by Max Avery Lichtenstein. For HBO: supervising producer, Lisa Heller; coordinating producer, Greg Rhem; executive producer, Sheila Nevins.