• The Connection

  • Robert Frost: A Lover’s Quarrel with the World

Streaming: The Connection

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Warren Finerty, Gary Goodrow, James Anderson, Carl Lee,

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Like an anteroom in hell, The Connection logs the listless waiting of West Village druggies caught in that irreducible moment before the dealer delivers. Director Shirley Clarke captures this hep crash pad with the distanced cool of a Miles Davis composition: the highly inventive roving camera, some marvelous medicated acting, and a poignant jazz score add up to a truly hip mise-en-scène. As luck would have it, half of the “dopers” are jazz musicians, including the great Jackie McLean on alto sax and Freddie Redd on piano, so when they’re not nodding out they’re counting down some great riffs in the key of H. Clarke’s first feature is also a critique of filmic reality, brought to us courtesy of a filmmaker within the story who is making a documentary about addicts. 

Steve Seid
  • Jack Gelber
  • Arthur Ornitz
Print Info
  • B&W
  • Digital streaming
  • 103 mins
  • Milestone Films

CineFiles is an online database of BAMPFA's extensive collection of documentation covering world cinema, past and present.

View The Connection documents  

The connection (program note), London Film Festival, Paul Taylor, 2005

The cool works of Shirley Clarke (press release), Pacific Film Archive, 1992

Points of resistance -- excerpt (book excerpt), University of Illinois Film Society, Isaac Rabinovich, 1991

The cool medium of Shirley Clarke (article), Reader (Los Angeles, Calif.), Bruce Bebb, 1982

Rivette in context (program note), National Film Theatre (London, England), 1977

The connection (review), Films and Filming, Raymond Durgnat, 1962

Correspondence. The connection (correspondence), Michael Oblowitz, Marion Billings, 1962

Pads, preston, and politics (review), Arthur Schlesinger, 1962

How to get a free hand in American filmmaking (review), 1961

Legal brief vs. censoring of 'Connection' by Albany ignoring 'that word' (article), Variety, 1961

Displaying 10 of 25 publicly available documents.

View all The Connection documentation on CineFiles.

Followed By

Robert Frost: A Lover’s Quarrel with the World

Shirley Clarke, United States, 1963

Clarke’s gift for portraiture is amply evident in her Academy Award–winning depiction of octogenarian poet Robert Frost—brilliantly edited by Charlotte Zwerin—which shuttles between a series of speaking engagements and scenes of the poet at home in Vermont. Entertaining the audience at Sarah Lawrence, Frost draws attention to the camera crew and to the tension between documentary and performance, saying: “This is a documentary film going on . . . and [the shots] have all been about me with a hoe digging potatoes or walking in the woods, reciting my own poems.” The crowd laughs, as does he, clarifying, “I don’t farm very much—for many years, I have had a little garden—but it is a false picture that presents me as always digging potatoes or saying my own poems.”

Kate MacKay

Print Info
  • B&W
  • Digital streaming
  • 52 mins
  • Milestone Films