The New York Film Festival
Click below for TONY's take on every title in this year's lineup.
Mon Sep 20 2010
Is there any subject, location or organization that Frederick Wiseman (Meat, Hospital) can't make interesting? Give the 80-year-old documentarian something like an Austin boxing gym run by a crusty ex-pugilist, and he'll find the social petri dish lurking beneath the surface in no time. If this concise look at a meeting place for people hoping to better themselves—or regain past glories—isn't a complete KO, it's because you can wring only so much from footage of people pummeling punching bags and sparring in the ring. But average Wisemania is still a weight class above the work of most doc-makers, and the way he keeps circling back to the testing of physical limits offers an intriguing look at the spiritual need to sweat it out.—David Fear