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Master documentarian Frederick Wiseman (Ex Libris; Monrovia, Indiana) knows to show up in the right place at the right time. This time, his subject is Boston City Hall, the center of operations for a metropolis heavily charged with historical significance. When the federal government (the Trump administration) is shoddy, every decision—from budgets to policy to the practical day-to-day of running a city—carries tremendous weight. Wiseman is nothing if not thorough. He deconstructs the hierarchy of power, dissecting every argument, ceremony, and person in its ranks—from then-Mayor Marty Walsh (currently United States Secretary of Labor) to the hotline receptionists, garbage collectors, and outreach workers. And he doesn’t balk at the mention of social disparities, gender, or white supremacy either. This film is a long journey into the fascinating inner workings of democracy.

Previous Festivals: Venice, NYFF

Official Website

Buy Tickets
Screening Schedule:
  • Sat 03.07 | 19:15 | Cinematheque 2
  • Wed 07.07 | 10:00 | Cinematheque 2
  • Watch online | The film will be available from July 1st until July 31st

Mr. Wiseman is a film and theater director of 45 films, primarily focusing on American institutions. In 2019, he was the honoree of the Library Lions Award from the New York Public Library and received the Pennebaker Award for Lifetime Achievement at the Critics’ Choice Documentary Awards. In 2018, he was the Charles Eliot Norton
Professor of Poetry at Harvard University. In 2016, he received an Honorary Award for
lifetime achievement from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Board of Directors. He is a MacArthur Fellow, a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship, and an Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He has won numerous awards, including four Emmys. In recent years, he directed The Belle of Amherst, Beckett’s Happy Days in Paris and Vasily Grossman’s The Last Letter at the Comédie-Française in Paris and Theatre for a New Audience in New York. A ballet inspired by his first film, TITICUT FOLLIES (1967), premiered at the New York University Skirball Theater in 2017.

Production: Frederick Wiseman, Karen Konicek
Production Company: Zipporah Films, Inc.
Cinematography: John Davey