Frederick Wiseman Season
Sun Jul 10 1:00 PM

Arc Cinema
Allocated Seating
176 Mins
1989 | 16MM | USA | D: Frederick Wiseman 

Celebrating the “lungs” of New York City, Wiseman’s lens probes all aspects and every corner of this 340-hectare idyll at the centre of a hectic metropolis.  

The sprawling sanctuary occupying the middle of Manhattan is unique in the world for its scale and the range of recreational activities it offers the city’s residents and visitors. Wiseman’s wonderfully engaging film captures New Yorkers – and others – enjoying the Park’s enviable habitat: sun-bathers, dog-walkers, joggers, parents with strollers, children at play, birdwatchers, a seniors’ group doing Tai-Chi by the Jackie O. Reservoir, roller-skaters, chess players and many others. Beyond such scenes of uplift, Wiseman also considers the tensions that arise when a particular groups’ needs are contested or compete with others – cue scenes of irate vendors at a peace rally featuring Midnight Oil performing a charged Beds are Burning – and the ongoing work of the Department of Parks Management to balance these. Celebratory scenes of the 1988 Gay & Lesbian Pride March and moving images of visitors to the AIDS Memorial Quilt project on display in the Park have particular resonance given the context of the first wave of the deadly AIDS pandemic that transformed the city during this time.    
"One of the most accessible and salutary films ever made by master documentarian Frederick Wiseman...one of the great filmmakers of our time." – Tom Shales, The Washington Post 

Arc Cinema

1 McCoy Circuit Acton, Australian Capital Territory, 2601