|9:00PM||Q and A with the Filmmakers|
Indoors in the Brooklyn Society for Ethical Culture
53 Prospect Park W, Brooklyn, New York 11215
2, 3, 4 train to Grand Army Plaza or the F or G train to 7th Ave
In 2003 filmmaker Michael Galinsky read a NYTimes article about a New Jersey Nets stadium coming to Brooklyn. Eight years and three lawsuits later, the Forest City Ratner vs. The People vs. The State of New York vs. The Borough of Brooklyn saga has played out for all of New York City to bear witness.
About Films For the Occupation:
Rooftop Films, in partnership with several of New York City’s finest film venues, will bring a series of four film programs to audiences from December 13-16. As the Occupy encampments are being dismantled across the country and as mainstream media and politics threaten to go on with business as usual, having conversations that question our economic and political system is all the more important. “Films for the Occupation” intends to showcase film and multimedia works that provoke or continue conversations that challenge old ways of thinking and encourage new ones. Curated by Rooftop Films and Bryce Renninger.
Battle For Brooklyn (Michael Galinsky, Suki Hawley, David Beilinson | Brooklyn, NY | 93 min.)
In 2003 filmmaker Michael Galinsky read a NYTimes article about a New Jersey Nets stadium coming to Brooklyn. Eight years and three lawsuits later, the Forest City Ratner vs. The People vs. The State of New York vs. The Borough of Brooklyn saga has played out for all of New York City to bear witness. A main character in this real estate tragedy has been Daniel Goldstein, the Prospect Heights man who refused to be bought out by Ratner developers. His organization, Develop Don’t Destroy, led the anti-Atlantic Yards movement and mobilized thousands of people toward his cause.
Battle for Brooklyn starts at the very beginning of this debate and follows it through its devastating conclusion. We see how Goldstein’s life was upended when he took on Ratner, and how he changes over the course of this near decade long struggle. New Yorkers pride themselves on being stubborn and vocal, and Goldstein certainly earns this pride. If you’re a Brooklyn resident who heard about all the hoopla but didn’t understand what people were actually fighting for, now is your chance to learn about the (anti-) development in your own backyard.
Of course people want more jobs and affordable housing in their communities. We should have those things without question; they are worth fighting for. Battle for Brooklyn sheds light on the realities of the promises made by Forest City Ratner, however, and shows us how those empty pledges divided our unified Borough. The brilliant and fiery Councilwoman Leticia James leads the charge, challenging the “backdoor deals” that eliminated local city involvement from Atlantic Yards and exposing the twisted truths about the effects this development will have on our community. Though it may appear that the battle is lost, the story, as we see here, is far from dead.
- Stephanie Skaff