The Cool World

  • Film
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The Cool World was Frederick Wiseman's first involvement with cinema (he produced it) and Shirley Clarke's second feature as director/writer (after The Connection). At heart, it's a not-very-interesting melodrama about a black kid in Harlem learning the hard way that crime is no answer to social problems. But on the surface it's a very much more interesting view of day-to-day life in the ghetto, patterned as a flow of 'insignificant' incidents, variously angry, frightened and defeated characters, and all too credible pressures. Often crudely photographed, but with a brilliantly multi-layered sound-track which integrates some fine jazz.

Release details

Duration: 106 mins

Cast and crew

Director: Shirley Clarke
Screenwriter: Shirley Clarke, Carl Lee
Cast: Hampton Clanton
Yolanda Rodriguez
Carl Lee
Gloria Foster
Bostic Felton
Jerome Raphael
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