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First Run Features Announces January 20, 2012 Theatrical Debut Of “The Pruitt-Igoe Myth” At NYC’s IFC Center

First Run Features Announces January 20, 2012 Theatrical Debut Of "The Pruitt-Igoe Myth" At NYC's IFC Center

As Sergio posted about a week ago… First Run Features acquired Chad Freidrich’s excellent and compelling documentary The Pruitt-Igoe Myth: An Urban History for threatical distribution, VOD and DVD, after a sucessful film festival run.

Today, the company announced that it will open the film at New York’s IFC Center on January 20, 2012, and will likely expand in successive weeks, depending on how it fares in NYC.

The feature-length documentary tells the story of the transformation of the American city in the decades after World War II, through the lens of the infamous Pruitt-Igoe housing development and the St. Louis residents who called it home.

Built in 1956, Pruitt-Igoe was heralded as the model public housing project of the future, “the poor man’s penthouse.” Two decades later, it ended in rubble – its razing an iconic event that the architectural theorist Charles Jencks famously called “the death of modernism.”


The footage and images of its implosion have helped to perpetuate a myth of failure, a failure that has been used to critique Modernist architecture, attack public assistance programs, and stigmatize public housing residents. THE PRUITT-IGOE MYTH seeks to set the historical record straight. To examine the interests involved in Pruitt-Igoe’s creation. To re-evaluate the rumors and the stigma. To implode the myth.

Here’s the trailer:

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I saw this at a festival in June, and it was my surprise of the show. One of the sorts of things you go in seeing based on a vague description. and leave being like "holy *** – I need to get people to see this."

The description is not nearly as appealing as the film. The text makes it sound like a boring thesis, the film is a living breathing history of the place.

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