The one thing you should see this week: a charming documentary about a man on a bike with a camera
This week’s pick: Bill Cunningham New York
Sporting a blue workman’s jacket and a wide smile, 82-year-old Bill Cunningham can most often be found teetering through the streets of Manhattan on a red bicycle, snapping photos of unsuspecting pedestrians. He may look like just another New York oddball, but there’s a method to Cunningham’s madness: a true sartorial anthropologist, he spends his days meticulously charting the spectacular fashions and trends on the streets of New York from the ground up. His photographs, which are a staple in the New York Times Style section, are candid, unstyled and brimming with energy.
The film follows Cunningham as he putters through his everyday life—on the streets, snapping high-society soirées, in his tiny Carnegie Hall apartment. A master of the lens, with eyes as sharp as they are twinkling, Cunningham is the antithesis of the fashion snob. For him, fashion is an egalitarian art, as valid in alleyways as on the runway, on club-goers and drag queens in Chelsea as on Anna Wintour. As he ambles through New York with a disarming “aw, shucks” demeanour, his exuberance is infectious. “Fashion is the armour to survive the reality of everyday life,” he rhapsodizes. “I don’t think you could do away with it. It would be like doing away with civilization.”
In case you missed it the first time it came to town, Bill Cunningham New York will be screening this week at the Bloor Cinema—the perfect film to toast the grubby and charming theatre before it shuts its doors for renovations on June 30.
The details: June 24 to 27. $9. Bloor Cinema, 506 Bloor St. W., 416-516-2330, bloorcinema.com