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In the Street (U*)

Bebop New York

A still from In the Street

Feel the buzz and the hum of the sidewalk with this compilation of rare short films showing New York in the 50s.

Tonight’s programme takes us from Harlem to Times Square, by way of Brooklyn and the Lower East Side, and for one memorable early-morning trip on the subway.

With the exception of Daybreak Express, whose director DA Pennebaker went onto a distinguished career in documentary features, the other films tonight are by directors better known for their work in still photography: Helen Levitt, Rudy Burckhardt and William Klein.  

These are films shot with the eye of a street photographer, capturing people unawares – adults in conversation on stoops, kids playing hopscotch or swimming under the Brooklyn Bridge. But there is also abstraction in Klein’s rhythmic portrait of the signs, lights, advertising and glorious spectacle of Times Square and, on the soundtracks, lashings of jazz from Duke Ellington and Thelonious Monk.

In the Street (US 1948/52 Dir Helen Levitt, James Agee, Janice Loeb 16 min sound 16mm presentation)

Daybreak Express (US 1953 DA Pennebaker 5 min sound 16mm presentation)

Williamsburg, Brooklyn (US 2003 Jonas Mekas 15 min silent 16mm presentation)

Under the Brooklyn Bridge (US 1953 Dir Rudy Burckhardt 15 min sound 16mm presentation)

East Side Summer (US 1959 Dir Rudy Burckhardt 11 min sound 16mm presentation)

Broadway by Light (France 1958 Dir William Klein 12 min sound xx presentation) TBC

Total running time: 74 min
Please note: this programme contains light effects that may be unsuitable for viewers with light sensitivity.

The Bebop New York film season accompanies the major exhibition Lee Krasner: Living Colour in the Art Gallery from 30 May – 1 Sep 2019.

* = locally classified by the City of London Corporation

Please arrive promptly at the advertised start time

Proof of ID may be requested on entry to films, in compliance with BBFC ratings


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