African American teenagers -- New York (State) -- Harlem (New York) -- Drama, Gangs -- New York (State) -- New York -- Drama, Harlem (New York, N.Y.) -- Social life and customs -- Drama

The Cool World

Restored 35mm Print

  • In Conversation
  • Director of the documentary program at UC Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism


Hampton Clanton, Yolanda Rodriguez, Carl Lee, John Marriott,

Fiction shot in the style of cinema verité, The Cool World depicts one Harlem youth’s quest to own a gun in order to gain the respect of his peers. Madeline Anderson, who was the film’s assistant director and editor, has said, “It was an honest film. It wasn’t a romantic idea of who the young people were. . . . That’s how they were. Some of the young actors in the film were from gangs or were friends of gang members. I think Shirley tried to do a good job of telling the truth about what was going on at the time.” 

  • Shirley Clarke
  • Carl Lee
Based On
  • the novel by Warren Miller and the play by Miller, Robert Rossen

  • Baird Bryant
Print Info
  • B&W
  • 35mm
  • 104 mins
  • Zipporah Films

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

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

Ellipsing time and space (article), Daily Californian (Berkeley, Calif.), Lee Robinson, 1992

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

Shirley Clarke (program note), San Francisco International Film Festival, 1966

The cool world (exhibitor manual), Cinema V Distributing, Inc., 1964

Shirley Clarke at Venice (interview), Film Comment, Renata Harriet Polt

Shirley Clarke (article)

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

A conversation - Shirley Clarke and Storm de Hirsch (interview), Storm De Hirsch

The cool works of Shirley Clarke (program note), Pacific Film Archive

Displaying 10 of 10 publicly available documents.

View all The Cool World documentation on CineFiles.