Experiencing Interruptions?

Harlem USA

A documentary film by and for the people of Harlem. Completed in 2013 but might as well be today. Or tomorrow.

  • Eric Schachter
  • Eric Schachter
  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C_xQtAH-gXY
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
  • Runtime:
    1 hour 23 minutes
  • Completion Date:
    August 1, 2013
  • Production Budget:
    25,000 USD
  • Country of Origin:
    United States
  • Country of Filming:
    United States
  • Language:
  • Shooting Format:
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
  • United Film Festival
    United States
    July 9, 2013
Director Biography - Eric Schachter

Montreal writer and film-maker Eric Schachter began visiting Harlem some years ago, filming the chess players in St Nicholas Park. He quickly realized that the story, as in so many places in the world, is the story of gentrification and dispossession, aggravated by the historical legacy of race in America. A story coloured by the fact that Harlem had been a world, an explosion of creative energy, a special moment in the history of African Americans and of Western urban and cultural history.

From a project that began with the chess-players of St Nick’s, and moved by degrees into the documenting of a social upheaval, the film grew eventually into something richer and stranger: a tribute to a remarkable people, people we see here not primarily as types or as victims, but as articulate, charismatic, intelligent agents and witnesses.

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Director Statement

I completed this film three years ago and it remains all-but unwatched despite being the best contemporary documentary about black folk in America and having more to say about everything that has happened and is yet to happen than anything else that I have read or watched. I am not speaking for myself here but for those people for whom it provides a voice and who take all the credit with this conclusion to our film: