Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Chronicling the end of New York as we knew it

From Vanishing New York:

Like many cities across America, New York has been changing rapidly. But as recently as 1990 it still had many old-fashioned aspects. Bakeries, butcher shops, family-owned grocery stores, bars and coffee shops were places where neighbors gathered and gave each other a sense of community.

Then, in the mid-nineties, with the influx of cash and low-interest loans, developers seized on the opportunity to invest in the city. Dangerous neighborhoods that had been made "hip" by artists living there now attracted the working wealthy and big investors. High-rise luxury buildings and chain stores started replacing the smaller residences and neighborhood shops that were the "glue" of the community.

Through a mix of archival footage, current photographs and film, interviews with long-time residents and merchants, footage of community board hearings, and discussions with investors, politicians and real estate developers, we explore the effects of development on various neighborhoods of New York City.

Click photo for trailer.


Anonymous said...

*sigh*...don't these filmmakers understand that they are part of the problem not just the developers who try to get in on a good thing? i guess it's noble to make a movie about what a struggle it is for people to afford to live in their own hometown but how many of the filmmakers were born in new york or lived here prior to college? i'll bet not many.

i hope they work that angle into the narrative. how many of them frontiered in a dicey neighborhood and had their rents payed by mommy and daddy while they played "artist"? is this film a bit of sour grapes cuz they've grown up a little, have kids and they too are getting priced out of the city? now that it affects them it's unfair i guess. well, welcome to the party.

isn't anyone actually "from" new york anymore? what's the statistic on that one? don't they understand their own hypocrisy?

how many of them used the term "bridge and tunnel" and looked down on the outer boroughs before they moved to brooklyn? i'm so tired of all these artsy hipsters coming from every podunk town in america to make it in the big city and deciding that they need to solve all of the problems. well you are part of the problem.

take a look at the filmmaker bios. maybe it makes them feel better to describe themselves as "long-time residents" but that doesn't make you a new yorker. just tell us where you came from. don't be ambiguous just to get some credibility. in reality they are just one of the many hipster schmucks who come here, proclaim themselves "new yorkers" after a couple of years and push out the local residents.

maybe i'm wrong about this and just venting my frustrations about my community going down the crapper, but give me a break. it's not art if it's not honest.

Anonymous said...

Looks like a good documentary. Good link you found reminding people of the corrupt moves of Bloombucks,the gap between the rich and working class, and reckless development.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget the health department raking in millions a week fining the better food establishments for ludicrous offenses and constantly changing rules for new violations. inspectors are not allowed to leave a location without finding or making up violations. Good way to be on the small business side!

Anonymous said...

Who needs fresh milk and hot bread from local retailers when we can have "progress" in the form of high rise "luxury" over development.

Emperor Michael R. Bloomberg the 1st:

I'll pick my teeth with the bones of the middle class"!

Ben said...

1st Anonymous comment-- You are right on:

how many of them used the term "bridge and tunnel" and looked down on the outer boroughs before they moved to brooklyn?

Let's be honest, those of us who were born and raised here are a dying breed. NY will soon be unrecognizable, transformed into a "mega city" for the wealthy elite and pushing its native sons and daughters out.

Anonymous said...

since the 90s ?
look what roBert MOses did to the entire 5 boros ,
whole neighborhoods uprooted and destroyed.

then the illegals,islamics and yuppies.

nyc died decades ago.

Anonymous said...

I am taking myself and about a hundred of my family and closest friends and going to find a nice small-mid-sized town out in the midwest, where we can all start over in a friendly enviornment. Maybe we can bring along some of what once made Queens and NYC the wonderful places they used to be. To hell with this city, and those hellbent on destroying it. Anyone want to come along?

Anonymous said...

Theres also a lot of New Yorkers who have moved to Colorado and California over the years going back thirty years. Hope there treated well and welcomed.

karl said...

the difference is that colorado and california are entire states, not one city. new yorkers don't descend on and change entire neighborhoods of cities in california and colorado in relatively short time frames (at least none that i'm aware of) and push out families who have lived there their whole lives and then make quaint movies about it.

whether people are welcomed is not the point. the point is, if you are going to make a film about a subject then address the subject honestly including your own impact on the problem (and i realize i'm saying this without actually having seen the film)

my humble opinion: in art, journalism and politics you cannot make progress without brutal honesty