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NEWS ARTICLE

This Weekend's Indies: 'The Dog' & 'About Alex'

Opening this weekend: a documentary about the real man who inspired 'Dog Day Afternoon' and an ensemble dramedy from TFF 2014.


The Dog: Meet John Wojtowicz, the man who inspired Sidney Lumet's 1974 masterpiece Dog Day Afternoon. While the film itself still resonates with us 45 years later, it's time to get to know the man who tried to rob Chase Manhattan in order to pay for his lover's sex reassignment surgery. The Dog captures the motives behind and reactions to the botched bank robbery Wojtowicz tried to accomplish. The incredibly unique and enthralling story offers us a portrait of a man perhaps too overcome by love, as well as a glimpse into New York's past gay culture and life that exploded in the 70s. 

About Alex: Jesse Zwick's debut film About Alex premiered at TFF 2014, and offered us an honest look into how adult friendships can change and warp over time. The film follows a group of college buddies who reunite after one of their friends, Alex (Jason Ritter), attempts to commit suicide. The all-star cast plays out the intricacies of friendship beautifully and includes: Aubrey Plaza, Max Greenfield, Jane Levy, and Max Minghella. As old romances reignite (and regrets are confronted), it becomes clear that this group of friends is not as close as they used to be. 

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“Her performance requires us to pay a great deal of attention to the detail and implication laid out across her expressive face, but the final result is a nothing less than a vigorously full-bodied creation.” In an ideal world, the amazing Lily Gladstone would have been an Oscar contender for her revelatory, @FilmIndependent-nominated performance in Kelly Reichardt’s exceptional drama CERTAIN WOMEN. Find out why. Link in bio.
John Cassavetes' SHADOWS (1959) — Peep THE TEN COMMANDMENTS on the marquee in the background
As we continue our #BlackHistoryMonth exploration of Tribeca selections helmed by black directors, it's time to turn our attention to a daring and genuinely monumental exercise that was ignored upon its first bow but remains radical and required viewing for anyone who cares about the past, present, and future of movies. In 2005, writer, director, documentarian, and film movement leader William Greaves debuted SYMBIOPSYCHOTAXIPLASM: TAKE TWO AND A HALF, in which the late indie pioneer, with the help of invaluable executive producers Steve Buscemi and Steven Soderbergh, revisited and reconceived his 1968 avant-garde landmark, a cult classic and film school staple that acerbically captured the making of a film within a film within a film. Greaves' update of his experimental, docu-fictional meditation on the warped and knotty act of moviemaking only intensifies this fluid work's status as a bona fide cinematic revolution unto itself.
Like Haile Gerima's HARVEST: 3,000 YEARS, today's #BlackHistoryMonth selection highlights another retrospective screening from a past Tribeca Film Festival. From 1989, Charles Lane's Sidewalk Stories is a silent masterpiece that updates Charlie Chaplin's soulful slapstick for modern times but imparts a heartrending worldview all its own. It tells the story of a homeless New York artist who assumes parental responsibilities for the young daughter of a murdered man, finding humor and humanity in every corner of the city. If you have yet to see this independent gem, seek it out immediately.
“I love America more than any other country in this world, and, exactly for this reason, I insist on the right to criticize her perpetually.” Raoul Peck’s magnificent new film essay @IAmNotYourNegro dives into the complex legacy of the peerless, fearless writer and social critic James Baldwin, seen here in Istanbul circa 1960. @Eng_Matthew explains why it’s necessary viewing. Link in bio. #BlackLivesMatter

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