A Bread Factory
Museum of the Moving Image - Redstone Theater
With director Patrick Wang and critic Matt Zoller Seitz in personDir. Patrick Wang. 2018, 242 mins. plus one intermission (with free local bread). With Nana Visitor, James Marsters, Jessica Pimentel, Tyne Daly, Brian Murray. “Writer-director Patrick Wang's third film A Bread Factory is his most ambitious work, and the most unabashedly Robert Altman–like American indie in recent memory. Designed to be screened in two parts with an intermission (in the spirit of Altman's never-released conception of Nashville as a diptych titled Nashville Red and Nashville Blue), it's set in and around a former bread factory in small-town upstate New York that was converted into an arts center and managed by a lesbian couple (Tyne Daly and Elisabeth Henry-Macari) who give ceaselessly of themselves. Wang's modest epic unfolds mostly in unbroken takes, alternating conversations between the characters with glimpses of the art and entertainment being showcased in the facility as well as in a rival arts center nearby. Some sections are quietly dramatic, others drily funny, still others cheerfully silly or brazenly fantastic (there are even musical numbers). The screenplay doles out juicy moments democratically, letting relatively unknown local actors share screen time with veterans like James Marsters and Janeane Garofalo and the great character actor Brian Murray. The result is an original, surprising, at times confounding experience, but ultimately an inspiring one. Wang presents theater, dance, film, poetry, visual art, and journalism as the foundation of relationships and careers, and the glue that binds small communities together, reminding citizens of their connection to a deeper past and helping them understand their place in the wider world. At a time when the creation of art is increasingly slandered as an elitist pursuit, Wang presents it as an intellectual and moral necessity, as soul-nourishing as bread."— Matt Zoller Seitz
Tickets: $15 ($11 seniors and students / $9 youth (ages 3–17) / free for children under 3 and Museum members at the Film Lover and Kids Premium levels and above). Order tickets online. (Members may contact firstname.lastname@example.org with questions regarding online reservations.)
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