The Must-See Movies and Venues at Rooftop Films in Brooklyn

05/14/2014 12:11 PM |

When we spoke to Rooftop’s program director a year ago, he told us, “I am really curious to see what happens out in Sunset Park—Industry City could turn into a very weird place filled with thousands of interesting businesses. There will be some crazy stuff happening in the Navy Yard, too, and someday people will start to notice.” Well, this year’s lineup, as usual featuring sneak-previews of forthcoming indies and other features still seeking distribution, will include screenings in the Navy Yard and in Industry City—in fact, “Industry City is Rooftop’s 2014 Presenting Sponsor, as well as the primary venue for their 2014 Summer Series,” according to a press release. A third of Rooftop’s 45 movies will screen at Industry City, including Friday’s kickoff, a program of short films. It highlights the series’ commitment to our borough: though Rooftop began in Manhattan, and still shows movies in the Financial District, Kips Bay and elsewhere, it made its name atop the McKibbin Lofts and is now headquartered in Gowanus. Through August, Rooftop will screen 25 films and shorts programs at various locations throughout Brooklyn. These are the highlights, both of films and venues.


Rooftop Films screening at Greenpoint High School for Engineering and Automotive Technology

Greenpoint High School for Engineering and Automotive Technology
Rooftop will screen movies on the lawn of this McCarren-adjacent school on the Williamsburg-Greenpoint border, including a July 31 sneak preview of Desiree Akhavan’s Appropriate Behavior, which she described to us as “heavily influenced by the fact that it takes place in Brooklyn.”

Rooftop Films screening at Trilok Fusion Center for the Arts

Trilok Fusion Center for the Arts
On the roof of this Clinton Hill organization’s headquarters, Rooftop will screen a May 22 sneak preview of Lukas Moodysson’s We Are the Best!, which one L Mag freelancer told me is “so good!”; another said she “just loved it.” BAM built a whole rep series about Punk Rock Girls around it.

Brooklyn Grange in the Brooklyn Navy Yard

Brooklyn Grange
Twelve stories above the East River at this 65,000-square-foot Navy Yard rooftop farm, Rooftop will show agriculturally appropriate cinema including a May 29 program of Rural Short Films and the June 19 New York premiere of The Last Season, a documentary about Oregon mushroom hunters.

Rooftop Films screening at Downtown Brooklyns Metrotech Commons

Metrotech Commons
Rooftop will host three free screenings in this Downtown Brooklyn open space, including, on June 6, a selection of shorts from this year’s Sundance Film Festival.

Rooftop FIlms screening at the Old American Can Factory in Gowanus, Brooklyn

Old American Can Factory
Rooftop calls the roof of this Gowanus arts and manufacturing complex “perhaps our most peaceful and spacious rooftop venue.” It’ll show five movies here this summer, including the May 23 New York premiere of Infinite Man, which sounds like an amazing Je T’Aime, Je T’Aime-esque time-travel romance, and a May 30 sneak preview of Ping Pong Summer, the new feature from Hammer to Nail contributor and Ditmas Park resident Michael Tully.

Industry City
As far as the screenings here, we’re most looking forward to the July 3 world premiere of Thanksgiving, a relationship drama about a Brooklyn couple. But as far as a venue, we’re most psyched about this weekend’s events (including a screening of Brooklynite Gillian Robespierre’s buzzy Obvious Child) in the “secret party cove” on 39th Street and First Avenue, described as “a spectacular and undiscovered space, tucked away amongst Industry City’s massive complex along the Sunset Park Waterfront.”

Follow Henry Stewart on Twitter @henrycstewart