This week, hit these events and support a trio of documentaries about the changing faces of two communities.
Two Rockaway Docs: A Film Benefit for Sandy with Live Music
Nov. 1 at 7pm, Peter Jay Sharp Building, BAM Rose Cinemas, $25.
Long before fish tacos brought on the Rockaway rebirth, the seaside community was a destination for New Yorkers looking to escape the sweltering city. Back in the 1930s, some 7,000 bungalows housed the “bungaloonies” who flocked to the Irish Riviera for a weekend of pub crawling or a ride on the Thunderbolt at Playland. Now, as Rockaway real estate becomes the next “shore thing,” fewer than 450 of the charming shacks remain (one of them, it so happens, belongs to Patti Smith). Jennifer Callahan’s documentary, The Bungalows of Rockaway, tells us how, exactly, we lost so many of them, and — much like the recently released Welcome to Kutscher’s documentary did with the fabled Catskills resort — milks former inhabitants for summer nostalgia.
Of course, Sandy did a number on the peninsula’s remaining bungalows (watch this clip to see the rebuilding of one colony). While Bungalows of Rockaway was made before that happened, the documentary will be paired with a screening of Callahan’s more recent doc about Rockaway’s post-Sandy recovery, Everything is Different Now: Rockaway After the Storm, and proceeds will go to a Sandy relief non-profit. The icing on the cake: live performances by Babe the Blue Ox and Vatican III, plus a q&a.
The Bushwick Diaries Kickstart Party
Nov. 4, 7:30pm at The Rookery, 425 Troutman St.; free.
Kweighbaye Kotee, the force behind the Bushwick Film Festival, is paying tribute to her neighborhood of nine years by directing a documentary that celebrates its “raw energy, rapidly growing cultural landscape, and diversity.” Of course, the latter is being threatened, which promises to be a topic of exploration in her 20 interviews with local residents. The promo video for the Kickstarter, which starts today and aims to raise $25,000 for the completion of filming and post-production, features Katarina Hybenova of Bushwick Daily and artist Rah Crawford (also the film’s art director), among others. “While the influx of new residents initially helped it to blossom into NYCs new eclectic center of arts and culture,” the Kickstarter blurb notes, “It is now at a turning point. Therefore, the film seeks to capture a moment in time that is drifting away.” The party will be at The Rookery, which arguably represents the Bushwick of the future. But don’t worry, there’ll be $7 drink specials, good company, and you’ll get a glimpse of the film in progress.