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A treasure...transporting...conveys his personal magnetism, eccentricity and non-stop creativity without romanticizing him.
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Boom for Real: The Late Teenage Years of Jean-Michel Basquiat

Sara Driver’s vivid depiction of Basquiat and New York’s then-gritty, pre-gentrified Downtown, is an exploration of the artist's pre-fame years and how the tectonically shifting arts culture of the late 1970s and '80s shaped his vision. BOOM FOR REAL: THE LATE TEENAGE YEARS OF JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT premiered at the 2017 Toronto Film Festival and went on to screen at the 2017 New York Film Festival.

Conveying Basquiat’s personal magnetism, eccentricity and non-stop creativity without romanticizing him, BOOM FOR REAL: THE LATE TEENAGE YEARS OF JEAN-MICHEL BASQUIAT serves as another chapter in the ongoing effort to rescue the artist from his own hype. To tell this story, Driver, who was part of the New York arts scene herself, worked closely and collaboratively with friends and other artists who emerged from that period: Jim Jarmusch, James Nares, Fab Five Freddy, Glenn O’Brien, Kenny Scharf, Lee Quinones, Patricia Field, Luc Sante and many others. Drawing upon their memories and anecdotes, the film also uses period film footage, music and images to visually re-recreate the era, drawing a portrait of Jean-Michel and Downtown New York City -pre AIDS, President Reagan, the real estate and art booms – before anyone was motivated by money and ambition.

“A treasure. A transporting doc about the early career of Basquiat and the environment where he flourished. Conveys his personal magnetism, eccentricity and non-stop creativity without romanticizing him.” – John DeFore, Hollywood Reporter

“Vivid and beautifully meditative. It shows how one of the most emblematic American artists of the late 20th century found his voice in the rubble.” – Chris Barsanti, AV Club

Played at

Royal, 7.30.18 - 7.31.18
Playhouse 7, 7.30.18 - 7.31.18
Town Center 5, 7.30.18 - 7.31.18
Claremont 5, 7.30.18 - 7.31.18
NoHo 7, 5.18.18 - 5.24.18
Ahrya Fine Arts, 5.18.18 - 5.24.18
Rated NR Closed Captioning Available Closed Captioning Available
Genre: Culture Vulture
Runtime: 78 min
Language: English
FEATURED REVIEW: Robert Abele, Los Angeles Times
Great artists who die young still have long lives, as evidenced by not just their work but the mythologizing that swirls around their legacy. But what's refreshing about Sara Driver's look-back documentary on one such towering figure, "Boom For Real: The Late Teenage Years of Je...