Gods of Times Square

Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York has got a piece up on Richard Sandler‘s documentary Gods of Times Square, which as the website describes…

is about the plethora of religious zealots and god-intoxicants that (daily) would gather there to preach against the “sins” of secular life. The backdrop for their rants were the grind houses and porno shops, the neon signs and towering super-models. Angry black Jews, for their part, preach about a vengeful negroid jesus who dooms the white man to slavery and punishment…..the work was shot from 1992-1998 as times square was “Disneyfied” for the new millennium.

JVNY has got a quote that doubly sums up the film:

The people in this world are crazy, passionate, filled with wild ideas. They tell stories. They sing and beg and stamp out the devil. They give mystical answers to simple questions. One shy young man believes he is the second coming of Jesus and waits for his moment to marry Madonna and become a rock star magician. Another man squats in the street outside Howard Johnson’s and takes a long, lazy shit.

Here’s a clip from the film:

Here’s a still from the film showing, I think, the Black Hebrews:

What's that guy doing on the ground?

A film/video/photography chronicler of NYC’s changing socio-economic landscape, Sandler’s catalog includes the very cool Sway, a thirty-minute “free-form” documentary shot on video over the course of fourteen years, as well as Brave New York, an hour-long celebration of the East Village during the years 1992-2004.

Sandler’s next film is, according to his comment on JVNY, titled “Neo York.” I’ve got no idea what it’s about, but can wager a guess that it’ll be locally relevant and one of a kind.

Tell us Richard Sandler! What’s it about?

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