Welcome to our weekly column Staff Picks, in which we ask the staffers at our favorite book, music, and movie stores around to town to share with us what they're reading, listening to, and watching this week. We figure they're good people to ask. Today we're checking in with Marco Ursino, artistic director of Williamsburg's independent movie theater IndieScreen, to find out what he's been watching lately.
Marco says: "Hood to Coast is a documentary that follows four unlikely teams on their epic journey to conquer the world's largest relay race. The film captures the love, dedication, and insanity of the every day runner as well as the excitement, pain, and humor of the unprepared first timer. Their stories are reminders that no matter who you are, you can push yourself beyond where you thought your limits were. Each year 1,000 teams (12,000 runners) in 2,000 vans cover 197 grueling miles as a relay, putting themselves through an arduous physical journey that as an individual would be impossible. Some run to test their personal limits, some to overcome personal obstacles, and others leap in blindly looking for a way to shake up a complacent life.
For a cult classic, I recommend World On A Wire by Dir. Rainer Werner Fassbinder, which was recently re-released. The project was born in 1973 as a futuristic Sci-Fi TV series and watching it is certainly a serious commitment; three hours and 25min to be precise. Until recently, the film was only available on the internet via file sharing communities. However, this is the completely restored version that was shown at the 60th Berlin International Film Festival in 2010. Despite the run time, when we screened it last month it seemed like viewers left the theater with more energy than when they came in.
Battle for Brooklyn won the Best Documentary Award at the 2011 Brooklyn Film Festival. This smart doc directed by Suki Hawley & Michael Galinsky is an intensely intimate look at the very public and passionate fight waged by owners and residents facing condemnation of their property to make way for the controversial Atlantic Yards project, a massive plan to build 16 skyscrapers and a basketball arena for the New Jersey Nets in the heart of Brooklyn. Shot over seven years and compiled from almost 500 hours of footage, Battle is an epic tale of how far people will go to fight for what they believe in."
IndieScreen // 285 Kent Ave, Brooklyn // (347) 227-8030