Swaghili: Learn It. Know It. Live It

Written by Armond White on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

Why Kanye West’s New Slaves matters Performance art is dead. At least it felt that way until Kanye West’s New Slaves–an in situ projection that played in 66 cities around the world. Kanye’s single-take recitation of the song “New Slaves” stared back at its spectators, a rare, unexpected video reminder cinema’s power when writ large. [&hellip
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Men with Movie Cameras

Written by Armond White on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

In Museum Hours and Upstream Color, two American filmmakers become disciples of Dziga Vertov  Go back to Dziga Vertov’s 1929 Man with a Movie Camera, the still striking montage experiment (available on Kino Home Video) to find the root concept of two recent art movies, Jem Cohen’s Museum Hours and Shane Carruth’s Upstream Color. Museum [&hellip
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Shakespeare Comes to Harlem 

Written by NYPress on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

Classic Theater of Harlem’s new season When Puck casts his magic spell over love besotted royalty and fairies in Shakespeare’s joyful A Midsummer Night’s Dream in the splendid new Richard Rodgers Amphitheater in Marcus Garvey Park July 13-30, the setting won’t be ancient Greece nor the music Elizabethan. Thanks to the brilliant Classic Theater of [&hellip
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Diary of a Statistic

Written by Armond White on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

A star turn becomes social protest in Fruitvale Station Young Black males rarely get such a smoothly beautiful portrait as in Fruitvale Station. Actor Michael B. Jordan (who was the Obama-like candidate for Student Council President in last year’s Chronicle) gives this year’s most powerfully affecting performance in Fruitvale Station. From making love to his [&hellip
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Mid-Year Reckoning

Written by Armond White on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

Tallying the year’s best films — so far That Kanye West’s outdoors projection New Slaves was the most exciting cinematic event of the first half of 2013 sets a high standard. But it’s been an exceptionally fine movie year so far which makes the mid-year reckoning full of excellence, an interconnected story of good cinema. [&hellip
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The New McCarthyism

Written by Armond White on . Posted in Arts Our Town, Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit

Heat proves girls can be gross too Pity Sandra Bullock rehashing her straight-laced shtick from many years and one Oscar ago as FBI agent Ashburn in The Heat. Instead of graduating to mature, sophisticated comic fare, the likable Bullock falls victim to Hollywood’s box-office sexism, the New McCarthyism.  Bullock’s desperate, unfunny routines in The Heat [&hellip
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All-Terrain Movie Star

Written by Armond White on . Posted in Arts Our Town Downtown, Arts West Side Spirit, Our Town Downtown, West Side Spirit

Paul Walker drives again in Vehicle 19 When Jean-Luc Godard showcased his great, long lateral-pan supermarket sequence in 1970’s Tout Va Bien, the metaphor provided an undeniable satire of the consumerist habit that typifies modern middle-class life even though no previous filmmaker had perceived the depth of such banality. Who could imagine that Godard’s memorable [&hellip
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