1 February 2013 10:58 PM, PST | SoundOnSight | See recent SoundOnSight news »


Directed by Neil Barsky

USA, 2013

The narrative often sold to non-New Yorkers is that New York City in the 1980s was a cesspool, and then Rudy Giuliani came along in the 1990s to clean it up. Like most political narratives, it’s a little loose with the facts. Edward Koch, the mayor of New York in the ‘80s, surely wanted to clean up the city as well, but he also had his own problems to deal with. Neil Barsky’s new documentary Koch tells the story of that era in exacting detail, from Koch’s election in 1977 to his departure from the office in 1989.

The film begins in the present day, with the city council bitterly divided over whether or not it should name the Queensboro bridge after Koch. Barsky then flashes back to Koch’s first mayoral election, in which the former congressman first displayed the blunt brashness »

- Mark Young

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