The Brooklyn Bugle and Brooklyn Heights Blog is proud to present an evening with filmmaker Heather Qunilan who will be presenting a 25 minute preview of her documentary If These Knishes Could Talk.
Ms. Quinlan will conduct a Q&A session with the audience before the screening.
Those purchasing $25 tickets will also receive a DVD copy of the 25 minute film.
Note: ALL PROCEEDS FROM THE SCREENING WILL GO TOWARDS COMPLETING THE FEATURE LENGTH VERSION OF KNISHES.
About If These Knishes Could Talk
It's tough to assess the value of a vowel or a diphthong, yet it's these intangible elements, along with a few dropped Rs and intrusive Gs, which make up one helluva great chapter of American history. The New York accent is as much a part of this country as those spacious skies and purple mountains majesty. It's the voice of the melting pot, a lingua franca that united immigrants from all over the world, and became the vibrant soundtrack of a charming, unforgiving and enduring city.
If These Knishes Could Talk is a feature-length documentary that tells the story of the New York accent: what it is, how it's evolved, and the love/hate relationship New Yorkers have with it. It features writer Pete Hamill, director Amy Heckerling and screenwriter James McBride, along with a cast of characters from the Throgs Neck to Canarsie.
In between, it explores how a toilet becomes a terlet, and why New Yorkers eat chawclate and drink cawfee. The film will reveal a few surprising facts, such as why there’s no such thing as a Brooklyn accent, and why an Italian like Rudy Giuliani talks like an Irishman. It will also describe the accent’s evolution—why the Bowery Boys sound like archaic even to New Yorkers, and how shows like “All in the Family” brought an end to “dese, dem and dose” and “toity-toid and toid.”
The film is directed by Heather Quinlan, a New Yorker who's lived in all five boroughs and whose short film, "O Brooklyn! My Brooklyn!" about Walt Whitman's "Crossing Brooklyn Ferry" was called “charming … an endearing way of making an old poem more relevant” by the New York Times. She also directed Dinner With Wise Guys, a Little Italy spin on IFC’s “Dinner For Five,” and interstitials for the Discovery Channel and the Science Channel. She started If These Knishes Could Talk as an homage to her father and grandparents, whose wonderful accents she missed hearing. The knish became a symbol for the film after she remembered it was a Jewish food introduced to her by her Irish father in the heavily Italian borough of Staten Island.
When & Where
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