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How the Hare Krishna Movement Started 51 Years Ago in the East Village

A kirtan (collective chanting of the Hare Krishna mantra) at Washington Square Park.(© Kasper van Laarhoven)

If you’ve ever been to Union Square, you’ve seen them: They chant, drum; sometimes they even give you a free copy of their scripture. Hare Krishnas are often shrugged off as an urban oddity on par with clipboard people, but what lies behind those orange robes and endless mantras?

This Friday, June 16, Hare Krishna! The Mantra, the Movement and the Swami Who Started It will premiere at Village East Cinema. The documentary tells the story of Srila Prabhupada, a disheveled 70-year-old Hindu who boarded a freighter to the U.S. in August 1965 with little more than three self-translated religious texts and instructions from his guru to “offer spiritual wisdom to the people of the world.”

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Watch This New Show to Find Out What the Dogs of Tompkins Really Think About You

Something strange is happening in the American psyche right now. Just a few years ago, the heroes of New York City-centric comedy TV were disconnected 20-somethings with suspiciously fancy apartments who wandered the earth clueless as to why no one wanted to date their flawless Tinder profile/soulless body. Now, they’re much tinier creatures that we rarely notice IRL and if we do, we’re like gagging and pointing and screaming: “Gawwwwd, I think that rat is bubonic.”

Hot on the hoofs of Louis CK’s The Secret Life of Pets, and HBO’s Animals (which just returned for season two), a new animated feature from Brooklyn-based animation company Cartuna offers a peek at what these city-dwelling creatures see in us humans. Obviously, it ain’t pretty.

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Here Are the Outdoor Movies Coming to Tompkins Square Park This Summer

(Photo: Joshua Davis for The Local East Village)

(Photo: Joshua Davis for The Local East Village)

Maybe you thought the summer’s outdoor film fests had already announced their lineups (and hopefully you snagged tickies to next Saturday’s sold-out screening of the Death by Audio documentary at Rooftop Films, followed by a set from A Place to Bury Strangers). If so, you were mistaken. In Rockaway, the annual Beach Flix series is still getting its act together, and in the East Village the folks at Howl! Arts have taken their sweet time letting us know what’s coming to Tompkins Square Park this summer. But good things come to cinefiles who wait.

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Are YOU Ready For the Revolution? Our Top 5 May Day Weekend Picks

(Photo: Courtesy of miss_millions)

(Photo: Courtesy of miss_millions)

Whether you know it as International Workers Day or as spring-inflected May Day, this year’s May 1 falls on a weekend, which means two days packed to the brim with events ranging from the revolutionary to the ridiculous. With a hat tip to Conor Tomás Reed from the Free University of NYC, here’s a roundup of events taking place in lower Manhattan and North Brooklyn.

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¡Presente! The Young Lords in New York

On July 25, 1969, a group of young activists officially announced the formation of the New York chapter of the Young Lords in Tompkins Square Park. In the following years, they fought for the rights of underserved communities of New York with a radical style reminiscent of the Black Panthers. Now, just two blocks away from where the Young Lords made their debut, Loisaida Inc. explores what remains of the Young Lords’ legacy with a multi-media exhibition, “¡Presente! The Young Lords in New York.”

Read more here. 

 

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Relive the Wild Days of Tompkins Square Park at These Two Revivals

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New York isn’t all ice cream scoops and Wes Anderson art. These two upcoming events promise to take you back to the East Village’s edgier days of yore. You don’t have to walk across a sea of crack vials to get to them — one of them is even on a boat.

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Films in Tompkins: ‘Chinatown’ w/Live Music

The folks at Films in Tompkins are once again bringing a big screen to Tompkins Square Park this year. This year, series founder Darin Rubell (owner of Forrest Point and Boulton & Watt) has tapped some celebs to pick the flicks. Tonight James Franco has selected Chinatown, preceded by the “post-hipster smooth jazz” of Todd Gaynor. Hopefully he’ll bust out his smokin’ sax cover of Weezer’s “Say It Ain’t So.”

“Gates” open at 6 p.m., movies starting at sundown.

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Films in Tompkins: ‘Big Night’ w/Music by Hawthorne

The folks at Films in Tompkins are once again bringing a big screen to Tompkins Square Park this year. This year, series founder Darin Rubell (owner of Forrest Point and Boulton & Watt) has tapped some celebs to pick the flicks. Tonight is Billy Joel’s pick, Big Night . It’ll be preceded by a live set from — sorry, not the Piano Man — Hawthorne, at 7 p.m.

“Gates” open at 6 p.m., movies starting at sundown.

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Video: The NYC Drag March Was Anything But a Drag

The annual New York City Drag March took place Friday, as drag queens and individuals of various sexual identities marched with pride from Tompkins Square Park to the celebrations at Stonewall Inn. Occurring on the same day the U.S. Supreme Court passed legislation legalizing gay marriage in all 50 states, this year’s march was especially joyous. Watch our video and see for yourself.

Video by Stephanie Leontiev.

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Park Yourself in Front of the Big Screen at These Highbrow Outdoor Film Fests

Catching an outdoor movie needn’t mean having to watch Ghostbusters or Jurassic Park for the 50th time (no offense to Bryant Park or SummerScreen). A couple of film series are taking over local parks with some more sophisticated, multiculti cinema, so skip the phrosties and pack a respectable bottle of Montepulciano in that picnic basket. Socrates Sculpture Park’s summer film series, curated by Film Forum, begins July 1, and promises gems like a reinterpretation of Alice in Wonderland by trippy Czech claymationist Jan Svankmajer (if you’ve never seen his “Manly Games”, watch it now). And the seventh annual Films on the Green festival will bring French classics to Tompkins Square Park tonight and next week before moving on to Williamsburg’s Transmitter Park on July 24 and 31.

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Onur Tukel’s New One Is a ‘No-Budget, Poor Man’s’ Birdman

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Onur Tukel must’ve set some kind of record when he premiered Applesauce at Tribeca Film Festival just weeks before premiering his other new film at the Brooklyn Film Festival. So how the hell did he do it? It all came to light last night during the premiere of his very latest, Abby Singer/Songwriter, at Windmill Studios in Greenpoint.

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