The Filtered Excellence: September 20, 2019

Bob Geldof once asked us, “Where is the filtered excellence!?” It’s right here. Once a week we take a break from comedy to bring you this week’s picks of the best things to watch, the most interesting things to do, great things to try, the best picks to read, our favorite things to listen to and more.


WATCH THIS

Where’s My Roy Cohn?  The latest doc from Matt Tyrnauer (Studio 54, Valentino: The Last Emperor) look back at the rise and fall of the man former Harvard Law School Professor Alan Dershowitz called ‘the quintessential fixer’.  Using archival footage and new interviews with those who were in his orbit, Tyrnauer tells how the New York born Cohn rapidly rose within the legal ranks: first as an Assistant U.S. Attorney, playing a key role in the conviction and execution of Ethel and Julius Rosenberg; to being the chief counsel to Senator Joe McCarthy during the Communist witch hunts – all before his 25th birthday.  Cohn would later move into private practice, where his clients ran the gamut from The Roman Catholic Archdiocese, Yankees owner George Steinbrenner and Aristotle Onassis to Mafia bosses and Studio 54 club owners Ian Schrager and Steve Rubell.  The doc also shows how Cohn parlayed his D.C. connections into becoming a major player in the political arena, becoming an informal advisor to Presidents Nixon and Reagan; and brokering a friendship between two of his clients who would forever alter the political landscape:  Rupert Murdoch and Donald Trump.   Tyrnauer points out how Cohen twisted patriotism and basic rules of law strictly for his own personal gain, even if it made those very ideals that he claimed to be defending a lot weaker.  Even more chilling is how Cohen’s take no prisoners approach has all but been adopted by those in the upper echelons of power.  A doc that is both history lesion and a much needed warning about unchecked power.  Where’s My Roy Cohn opens New York and Los Angeles this weekend and in select cities September 27th.  You can also go to www.wheresmyroycohnmovie.com for more information.

LISTEN TO THIS

Sinematic by Robbie Robertson.  For his first album in 8 years, the former Band guitar/songwriter finds himself building upon the work he did working on the forthcoming Martin Scorsese film The Irishman.  Rich in atmospheric melodies, Robertson tells stories of gangsters (‘I Hear You Paint Houses’, ‘Shanghai Blues’), the current political climate (‘Hardwired’, ‘Let Love Rain’); and love and lust (‘Walk In A Beauty Way) as only Robertson can, narrating as much as he is singing with a detail that is often found in novels.  There’s also two instrumentals (‘Wandering Souls’ and ‘Remembrance’) that quickly reminds you that Robertson, the film composer is still at the top of his game.  With guest appearances by Van Morrison, J.S. Ondara, Citizen Cope, Felicity Willams and Glen Hansard, Robertson has crafted a moody, dream-like song cycle that was designed for a late night sitting.  Sinematic by Robbie Robertson is available now through Amazon, Apple Music and all major streaming outlets.

DO THIS

New York City.The Sound I Saw and Light Break by Roy DeCarava.  For over six decades, Roy DeCarava helped transform photography from a means to document into an art form in its own right.  As part of DeCarava’s centennial celebration, The David Zwirner Gallery is currently presenting two exhibitions that capture the full scope and vision of his work.  Light Break is a collection of shots (several of which that have never been seen) from 1948 to 2006 that captures the beauty of every day people amidst a seemingly otherworldly city setting.  The Sound I Saw is a series of photos of jazz greats John Coltrane, Duke Ellington, Billie Holiday and Ornette Coleman at the height of the creative powers, who under DeCarava’s lens, look celestial.  These shots have to be seen to be believed, reminding us yet again, that a true photography master walked among us.  A must see exhibit.   The Sound I Saw will be at The David Zwirner Galleries on East 69th and West 19th Street through October 26th.  You can also go to www.davidzwirner.com for more information.

New York City: Laws Of Desire.  The Films Of Antonio Banderas.  In a film career that has spanned over 35 years, Antonio Banderas has managed to combine alpha male attitude with emotional fragility to an astonishing effect.  As a ramp up to his role in the new Steven Soderbergh film The Laundromat, Quad Cinema will present a week long retrospective featuring some of his best work.  It will include his breakout collaborations with director Pedro Almodóvar (Tie Me Up!  Tie Me Down!, Law Of Desire, Labyrinth Of Passion, Matador); scene stealing supporting roles in Hollywood blockbusters (Interview With A Vampire, Philadelphia,) and his seamless transition into a leading man (The Mambo Kings, Desperado, Evita, The Mask Of Zorro).  With such an eclectic selection of films, Quad Cinema has put together the ultimate look about one of cinema’s most endearing actors.  Laws Of Desire:  The Films Of Antonio Banderas ill be at Quad Cinema through September 26th.  You can also go to www.quadcinema.com for more information.

New York City: 92Y StreetFest ‘19.  For over 145 years, the 92nd Street Y has been presented groundbreaking programming in the performing and visual arts, literature, and culture.  Once again, the 92nd Street Y will transform streets between 79th and 94th and Lexington into an urban playground with StreetFest.  It will feature performances from the Broadway shows, Tootsie, Beetlejuice, Chicago, Mean Girls, Waitress; free dance and fitness classes, health screenings, family-friendly activities and much more.  The best part is that’s all free.  It’s a festival that good for the mind and body.  92Y StreetFest ‘19 will take place this Sunday from noon to 5pm.  You can also go to www.92y.org/street fest for more information.

Want more excellence? Read last week’s the filtered excellence.

 

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Earl Douglas is a writer/photographer based in New York City. A frequent contributor to The Interrobang, Earl is also Executive Director for the New York chapter of The Black Rock Coalition. Earl worked in radio for nearly two decades at WNEW-FM and XM Satellite Radio, which included being the on-air producer for Carol Miller, Scott Muni and Ron & Fez, and a contributor to Opie & Anthony. Earl has also independently published a number of books including Black Rock Volume 1, Urban Abyss, Mobile Uploads, and For Shimmy. His latest project is the photojournalism magazine PRAXIS, which is available exclusively through Blurb.com.

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Earl Douglas
Earl Douglas
Earl Douglas is a writer/photographer based in New York City. A frequent contributor to The Interrobang, Earl is also Executive Director for the New York chapter of The Black Rock Coalition. Earl worked in radio for nearly two decades at WNEW-FM and XM Satellite Radio, which included being the on-air producer for Carol Miller, Scott Muni and Ron & Fez, and a contributor to Opie & Anthony. Earl has also independently published a number of books including Black Rock Volume 1, Urban Abyss, Mobile Uploads, and For Shimmy. His latest project is the photojournalism magazine PRAXIS, which is available exclusively through Blurb.com.