The Best Old Movies on a Big Screen This Week: NYC Repertory Cinema Picks, April 6-12

comingapart - rip tornComing Apart (1969)
Directed by Milton Moses Ginsberg
Imagine, crazy as it sounds, David of David Holzman’s Diary as a middle-aged psychiatrist instead of a young filmmaker, and you sort of get the idea. Exploiting the power of his profession, Joe (Rip Torn) flirts, seduces, and sleeps with a number of women—patients, acquaintances, strangers—in a friend’s cozy Manhattan office. Unbeknownst to them, he secretly films all of his encounters. Coming Apart completely consists of these hidden-camera shots set entirely in this one space, giving the film a stifling and claustrophobic quality. The camera gazes unflinchingly, capturing loveless sex. A matter of Ginsberg’s calculated ellipsis, there is no specific sense of how much time passes from one sequence to the next—the camera simply stops and starts in medias res. And yet, as Coming Apart progresses, the act of recording breaks down as Joe’s mind comes apart. Tanner Tafelski (April 6, 15, 1:30pm at MoMA’s “Six New York Independents”)

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