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Reel Brooklyn is a biweekly column chronicling the definitive history of Brooklyn on-screen, one film—and neighborhood—at a time. After years of faking it, Hollywood came east in the 60s and 70s, and discovered New York, landing into neighborhoods like Park Slope—in Hal Ashby's funky, saber-toothed debut comedy The Landlord (1970)—as though exploring the uncharted interior of Borneo. Raw-boned, ethnic, shot-right-there realism was suddenly movies' lingua franca; the bikers of Easy Rider (1969) could tell anyone...
In a studio space carved out in the ground floor of the Battery Parking Garage—the first to be built by the city and the last building ever built by Robert Moses—singer Dashon Burton faces a camera. He looks natty in his suit, his long, hip-length locks tied back at the base of his neck. He sings the same line in his deep bass-baritone. “The world wants us to love it.” “Think about describing one of your...
Rooftop Films, the city's annual summerlong roving cinematic block party, kicks off its summer 2016 series this week. As ever, expect advance outdoor screenings of anticipated independent films and shorts from talented up-and-comers, invariably enlivened by Q&As with filmmakers and actors, live music, and liquid afterparties, at rooftops and parks across the city, including in Sunset Park, Gowanus, Metrotech Commons, Bushwick, Long Island City and Roosevelt Island. The screening series traces its origins to a...
From April 15-21, the Metrograph will host a restoration of Diego Echeverria's 1984 documentary Los Sures, a vital portrait of the predominantly Puerto Rican lower-income neighborhood of Southside Williamsburg. The film has been restored by the Williamsburg nonprofit center for documentary art UnionDocs, and it inspired their wide-ranging, community-based documentary project Living Los Sures. Among the strands of Living Los Sures are a number of short documentaries about the neighborhood. In cooperation with UnionDocs,...

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