Frederick Wiseman’s In Jackson Heights


In Jackson Heights is a 2015 documentary film about the communities of Jackson Heights, Queens, New York City directed by Frederick Wiseman. The film received widespread critical acclaim. In 2017, the film was considered the thirteenth “Best Film of the 21st Century So Far” by The New York Times.

Mr. Wiseman plunges you into Jackson Heights like a no-nonsense tour guide, dropping you into the ’hood and immersing you in sights and sounds with a succession of harmoniously framed shots of people, corners, flags (a Brazilian banner ornaments one shot, while the Stars and Stripes waves in another) stores and bins of brightly colored vegetables. Working with his longtime cinematographer, John Davey, Mr. Wiseman also pops into a Muslim school, a Jewish center, a meeting of gay and transgender people, a City Council office and the local headquarters of Make the Road New York, an activist organization dedicated to Latino and working-class people. Every so often, he pauses a while as someone delivers a song, an argument, a speech, a complaint or a tribute — what great talkers he finds! (Review: ‘In Jackson Heights,’ an Ode to the Immigrant Experience)

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