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Author: Patrick Devitt

Notes on “Notes on an Appearance”

With only one feature and a handful of shorts to his credit, Ricky D’Ambrose has already forged a unique cinematic identity. After restructuring his film school project, University People (2007), into a 30-minute film entitled “The Strangers” in 2011, he made three thematically connected shorts — an unparalleled triptych that scrutinizes the circadian routines of isolated individuals within a metropolitan landscape. In each of his projects, D’Ambrose builds upon the über-specific look and design that characterizes his aesthetic. He favors rigid, assiduously composed shots with sparse interiors, and frames his subjects between static items or in front of windows;...

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Nitehawk Shorts Film Festival, Part 2: Panel On Shorts Filmmaking, Midnite Program & More

In addition to the Opening Night selection the Nitehawk Festival offers two supplementary matinee programs. The first opens with Jon Bunning’s 15-minute documentary, The Tables (2017), featuring a pair of Bryant Park pingpong tables and capturing one of the most delightful exhibitions of New York City’s spirit. Bunning addresses themes of gentrification, classism, and the importance these tables serve for its community. Applying quick, snappy editing and returning to the tables for four straight years, he cycles through a combination of the countless regulars that return to the tables every night, and gives us glimpses into the lives of...

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On Nitehawk Shorts Festival’s Opening Night

Brooklyn-based moviegoers were thrilled at the news of Williamsburg’s Nitehawk cinema opening in the summer of 2011. Before the theater’s launch, the most pragmatic way to attend a repertory screening required either a trip to BAM in Fort Greene, or to Manhattan. The Nitehawk theater was not only fundamental in exemplifying the many different ways a movie house could prevail in a borough, but it also inaugurated a steady rise in the dine-in movie theater options in New York City, which by now include the Alamo Drafthouse, iPic, and Syndicated. Established in 2013, the eponymous Nitehawk Shorts Festival is...

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