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The Ballad of Greenwich Village

Perfunctory and pointless doc, but some celebs are interesting
By GERALD PEARY  |  March 22, 2006
2.0 2.0 Stars
DREAMS OF GETTING LAID: Mailer reminisces about the old days.Filmmaker Karen Kramer’s best work on The Ballad of Greenwich Village was during production, getting Norman Mailer, Maya Angelou, Richie Havens, and the ever-reticent Woody Allen to reminisce before her camera. It’s fun to hear how Allen and fellow comedian Bill Cosby used to hang out together on Village streets in the early ’60s, between sets. And how Mailer at 16 would head into the Village from Brooklyn with wild dreams of, in his words, “getting laid.” But the street cinematography is perfunctory, and the bulk of this documentary is disorganized and pointless, jumping too quickly through 150 years of New York cultural history (there’s a Lili Taylor voiceover) to have any impact. And not all the interviews are effective ones, i.e., smug celeb Tim Robbins sitting on a stoop complaining about rich yuppies taking over in the 1980s.
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  Topics: Reviews , Celebrity News, Entertainment, Bill Cosby,  More more >
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