Sign of the Times
An inside look at a New York institution
As more and more people turn to Twitter and RSS feeds for their current-events fix, it's important to be reminded that there's still a reason to spill a little ink.
Director Andrew Rossi's Page One: Inside The New York Times--which opened yesterday--is a gripping, unflinching look at a 160-year-old institution attempting to remain relevant in a digital age.
The documentary's chronicling of the Gray Lady's bustling, chaotic newsroom spans 14 months and tackles several watershed moments for the Times, including the WikiLeaks scandal, the birth of the iPad, the embarrassing sagas of Jayson Blair and Judith Miller and the paper's own struggles with layoffs and dwindling subscriptions.
Inasmuch as documentaries can have stars, Page One's is columnist David Carr, an ex-junkie and onetime welfare recipient whose dogged reporting and impassioned defense of his employer elevates him to Woodward and Bernstein levels of muckraking heroism.
Ultimately, the doc is as much about him as his periodical, which is good. Carr, in his unique way, provides color to a subject known for being black-and-white (and read all over).
Page One is currently showing at the Angelika Film Center, 18 West Houston St. (at Mercer St.); 212-995-2570 or angelikafilmcenter.com