Thursday, May 23, 2013

Last Days to see Scarecrow at the Film Forum!

The 70's had the best Road Movies. Think back to the end of the 60's and Easy Rider. Then on to films like Two-Lane BlackTop and Vanishing Point in 71'. These and many more showed the gritty American landscape of that decade with trips across country. If one would like to be taken back to this time head Downtown to the Film Forum to see Gene Hackman and Al Pacino in the 1973 Road Movie - Scarecrow. The 70's might have been the last decade of the Hobo Traveller. This was a way to get around hitchhiking on the back roads and if need be hopping trains. This film Directed by Jerry Schatzberg, who just two years before had made The Panic in Needle Park with Pacino, is about two down and outs that meet on the road and head East. Max (Hackman) is a ex-con that likes to fight with a dream of opening a Car Wash in Pittsburgh. Lionel (Pacino) is a sailor who has some strange ideas about playing the clown. Lionel believes that the scarecrow doesn't scare birds, but instead amuses them - birds find scarecrows funny. In this way he shows Max that fighting can be avoided by making people laugh. This is not always the case as the two jump from one ride to another stopping at dive bars and little towns that seem to be living on their last leg. This is a film that shows just how crazy traveling can be and is one of the films that made the 70's the decade of the Road Movie. In New York the Film Forum brings lots of old films to the screen. So go down and check out the Director that gave the young Al Pacino his big break in the second film they made together - Scarecrow.

NYC You Are Here Back-Log - Panic in Needle Park

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Book Then Movie - The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald

The Great Gatsby by American author F. Scott Fitzgerald is now a box office hit Directed by Baz Luhrmann. A all star cast has come forward to be apart of this historic film based off one on the best novels ever written. First is Leonardo DiCaprio as Gatsby, then Tobey Maguire, and one of the best young actress out there, Carey Mulligan, make this production of a classic pice of literature into a big box office smash. Luhrmann was the Director that brought the world Romeo + Juliet in 1996,  also staring DiCaprio. This movie will be in the theater for a long time. So one will have time to flip through the book and then get to the Cinema. This is not only a must read for every New Yorker, but all Americans and book lovers. It not only shows us the American Jazz Age, it shows us just how good a pice of writing can be.

Here is a Book Review from the back log on NYC You Are Here of F. Scott Fitzgerald's the Great Gatsby --

This great work of Twentieth Century American Fiction was not so well known in Fitzgerald's life time. The first printing that came out in 1925 was over 20,000 copies and sold out. The second printing (3,000) sat on the shelves of a warehouse for 15 years. Only after the news of his death did the last of the second printing finely sell. His novel is not just a social history, but is a pleasure to read. The Jazz Age, that great party before the depression. This is what is represented with the bigger then life characters in the Great Gatsby. The twenties was a time of bootleggers, flappers, and self made men. Fitzgerald knew how full and just how empty these characters lives could be. "The Jazz Age, it was an age of miracles, it was an age of art, it was an age of excess, and it was an age of satire." Gatsby is the man of the Jazz Age. He Has "some heightened sensitivity to the promises of extraordinary gift for hope, a romantic readiness." This is a story about life, love and money from the 20's. It is also a story about New York, Long Island and how even back then young people flocked here to be where the actions is. The narrator Nick Carraway comes from the Midwest to find himself before being married. His story is told by reconstructing events in Gatsby's life from his own prospective. This Tall Tale is not just Gatsby's, or Nicks, but it becomes yours as you form your own prospective. "I was within and without, simultaneously enchanted and repelled by the inexhaustible variety of life." Nick lives next door to Gatsby on Long Island. On the Island rich people have big parties, nice cars, and huge estates. In contrast some of the story goes on inside Manhattan, in small apartments, city streets and train stations. Nick's NYC is a big bustling place full of surprises. The whole book has a dark feeling that is heightened when in the city and lifted, if only slightly, within the excess of Long Island. But this is a vale, a fake cover for people that want to run from not through life's twist and turns. A must read for any New Yorker.