Film and cinema has been an important part of New York culture ever since the moving picture was first created. New York City is not only a global hub for visual cinematic experience, but to some it is the place where film still holds its truest form. Here are some of the ways you can take in the great cinematic wealth that New York City has to offer.
One of my favorite places to catch good independent film is Angelika Film Centre on 18 W Houston Street right above SoHo. My first experience in this theatre was back in 2011 to see Woody Allen’s "Midnight in Paris”. The theatre’s simple layout and vintage seats made for an immersive experience that made me feel like I was also traveling back to 1920’s Paris. In addition to the popcorn and candy you are used to having at the movie, it would also be nice to get a meal and a drink. Syndicated Bar Theatre Kitchen in Bushwhick is a place where you can have a meal and a cocktail while in the theater.
New York is home to some of the world’s premier festivals like the Tribeca Film Festival and the New York Film Festival at the Lincoln Centre. I spoke with Winter Coleman, an NYC based film maker, about films to look out for while on the festival circuit. Winter says, “One film I saw this year was Moonlight and I really liked it. The film felt effortlessly unconventional in all the ways that inspire you to be fearless in finding your own truth”. Moonlight appeared this year at the New York Film festival along with other critically acclaimed films like Manchester by the Sea and 13th. For more interesting and obscure film submissions you can also check out the African Film Festival and Brooklyn Film Festival.
Along with New York being a film and cinema epicenter it is also a global hub for visual art. Film makers and visual fine artists have moved to make works that push the envelope of blending the two genres. The Whitney Museum of American Art hosted an exhibition that shows exactly that. Dreamlands: Immersive Cinema and Art, 1905-2016 is an exhibition that documents the progression of film as a visual art form over the past century.
For another look into the cinematic art genre you can head over to the MoMA to check out their weekly installment "Movie Mondays". This ongoing series features cinematic works from artists, both past and present that have been instrumental in pushing the boundaries of cinema as a visual art form. To get a better perspective on Cinematic art in New York I spoke to Maggie Brennan, an analog-video artist as well as a creative Director at NNEM Agency. Maggie referenced the Rhizome Organization as one of her favorite sources for cinematic visual art and new media. Rhizome Organizations curated works can be seen both on their on-line database “Artbase” as well as the New Museum located on the Bowery in Downtown Manhattan.