7th Street: 5 out of 10: Nostalgia about ones childhood is a dangerous thing. It permeates 7th street where Josh Pais is clearly to close to the subject as he bemoans the loss of the crime ridden hellhole of his youth and worries about the gentrification of said block. (There are outdoor café's now and people are drinking lattés oh the horror the horror)
That said it is a fascinating documentary with a great group of people (especially Reno Thunder who was his mothers occasional boyfriend.) In fact this is quite the high production home movie with many interviews with family who often counteract Mr. Pais's thesis about the neighborhood change and when Mr. Thunder falls on hard times the change is so dramatic there are clearly more forces at work then the neighborhood cleaning itself up.
I wish we had spent even more time with Mr. Thunder after the change and less on Mr. Pais's childhood (especially the endless footage of his late mother and how she was at the center of an art revolution. She actually comes across as kind of a how does one put this nicely party girl.) Mr. Pais's brother in a hilarious and all to short clip reminisces on his reaction of finding Marcel Marceau in his living room one morning. He clearly doesn't hold the neighborhood (or mimes) to his heart and seemed glad to escape.
There is a staged and telling scene at the end where an adult Mr. Pais and his friend play in a fire hydrant while yuppies look on disapprovingly, his point is lost in the fact he does look quite silly. There are some things from childhood we just let go.
0 of 6 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this