Playing at Pickford Film Center
94 minutes, USA, Canada, In English, Documentary
Rated NR: .
Set in a sizzling New York City, The Hottest August is Brett Story’s visionary look at a culture on the precipice as both climate change and disaster capitalism eclipse our future. Despite an edgy undercurrent of anxiety, the film locates a warm humanity in interactions with a cross section of New Yorkers expert at “rolling with the punches,” as one Staten Island couple says outside of their garage. The rich set of characters includes a futuristic Afronaut, Hurricane Sandy holdouts, a Zumba instructor, and 1920s-style dancers who could be deckhands on the Titanic. While this smart, incisive essay taps into passages by Zadie Smith, Karl Marx, and Annie Dillard, Story’s presence can be felt strongly throughout: she acts as free-ranging poet/meteorologist with a farsighted ability to forecast our uncertain destiny.