Dir. Neil Barsky, USA, 2012, 95 min., NR, HD Official Website
After 4pm screening on Sat, Mar 9, Q&A with director Neil Barsky via Skype. After 4pm screening on Sun, Mar 10, a discussion with Richard Lloyd, professor of urban sociology at Vanderbilt (co-presented with the Nashville Jewish Film Festival).
Former Mayor Ed Koch was the quintessential New Yorker. Ferocious, charismatic, and hilariously blunt, Koch (who died in February at the age of 88) ruled New York from 1978 to 1989—a down-and-dirty decade of grit, graffiti, near-bankruptcy and rampant crime. First-time filmmaker (and former Wall Street Journal reporter) Neil Barsky has crafted an intimate and revealing portrait of this intensely private man, his legacy as a political titan, and the town he helped transform. The tumult of his three terms included a fiercely competitive 1977 election, an infamous 1980 transit strike, the burgeoning AIDS epidemic, landmark housing renewal initiatives, and an irreparable municipal corruption scandal. Through candid interviews and rare archival footage, Koch thrillingly chronicles the personal and political toll of running the world’s most wondrous city in a time of upheaval and reinvention.
“A beautiful documentary examining one man's fascinating journey into rehabilitating the very unhealthy city of New York in the 1980s.” - Movies News Desk, BROADWAY WORLD
“Skillfully directed and assembled...a very good movie—vivid, touching, and fair.” - Hendrik Hertzberg, THE NEW YORKER
New York Times obituary Feb 1, 2013.
An interview with Neil Barsky in the New York Press.