Cinema: A Child of Mother Harlem

The Cool World. Fifth Avenue, for all the U.S. moviegoer knows, comes to a dead end at 110th Street. Beyond that point lies Harlem, the black hole of Manhattan, where almost half a million Negroes and Puerto Ricans are confined by pressures of prejudice and poverty; and beyond that point, U.S. moviemakers seldom venture. Indeed, this film is the first full-length movie that has ever been shot in Harlem. Produced by Frederick Wiseman and directed by Shirley (The Connection) Clarke, The Cool World is a crude but often effective sociological shocker: a story of how cold old Mother Harlem indifferently devours...

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