Dir. Shirley Clarke
1961, USA, 110 min
Created by director Shirley Clarke at a time when female filmmakers were in short supply, The Connection shatters stereotypes to become one of the most vital American independent classics. Based on the play within a play by Jack Gelber, the film portrays a group of addicts waiting in a New York apartment for their next hit. Meanwhile, a writer has entered their midst to write a script about those in the group who are jazz musicians, analyzing their every move. With brilliantly written dialogue and kinetic choreography to match its musical players, this long-lost touchstone returns to distribution for the first time in decades with a new restoration from UCLA.
Presented in collaboration with TD Winnipeg International Jazz Festival.
The quartet of musicians, led by the pianist and composer Freddie Redd and the caustic-toned post-bop saxophonist Jackie McLean, perform brilliantly on-camera as they dramatize both the agonized wait and the needed high.
– Richard Brody, New Yorker
A lean, mean saga of jazz, junk and rebellion.
– Andrew O’Hehir, Salon.com