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Documentary

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2001 (USA)  »

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Features Sidewalks of New York (2001) See more »

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One Of The Better Examples From The Sundance Series, A Complimentary Eye Focused Upon A Fine Independent Film.
23 February 2010 | by (Mountain Mesa, California) – See all my reviews

The "Anatomy of a Scene" short film series, shown upon the Sundance television channel, has become a favourite "extra" added for DVD viewers, and this piece from a Paramount release of a diverting feature film by writer / director / actor / producer Edward Burns, will appear to many as a compelling reason that this is so, since in its concise (22 min.) length, it offers a bountiful assemblage of detail, in addition to insightful descriptions of the filmmaker's technique. The feature motion picture under discussion here is SIDEWALKS OF NEW YORK, an exceptional film shot in a quasi-documentary style that was developed as it was being completed. It was made with a rather small budget, no production designer, minimal City of New York filming permits, a "run and gun" camera mode, and a talented cast that essentially worked for nothing. The Paramount DVD also includes a very useful commentary from Burns that the "Anatomy" item is often paraphrastic with the longer piece; most cinema enthusiasts will enjoy both, principally because the SIDEWALKS documentary tone begets a visual tour de force. Joining Burns for this short, and contributing penetrating remarks that will be of value to cinephiles are director of photography Frank Prinzi, producer Margot Bridger, who discusses the genesis of SIDEWALKS, actress Rosario Dawson, gaffer Marc Rogers, who details the prominent use of natural lighting throughout, editor David Greenwald, who persuaded Burns to utilize documentary-evocative jump cuts, and location manager Diana Norwood. Here we have an estimable short film that can be highly recommended, as is also the feature (SIDEWALKS).


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