The Secret Cinema will present a special film screening at the Parkway Central Library, in celebration of their current exhibition “Philadelphia: The Changing City.”
The program will include films about city planning, urban renewal, discriminatory lending practices and other issues that shaped the Philadelphia of today.
Some films were shown in past Philly-centric Secret Cinema programs, many years ago, while others will be shown for the first time.
There will be one complete program starting at 6:00 pm in the Montgomery Auditorium.
*Admission is free, but advance registration is requested at:
As always — still — Secret Cinema programs are shown using 16mm (not video, not digital) FILM projected on a giant screen.
Highlights of PHILADELPHIA: THE CHANGING CITY (the film program) include:
OUR CHANGING CITY (1955) – Made by the city during the administration of Mayor Joseph Clark, this vivid color film makes the case for urban renewal (i.e., demolition and new construction) while showing a wide range of cityscapes — from new homes in the Northeast to the poverty of people living in houses without plumbing or electricity.
NOT IN MY BLOCK (1964, Dir: Robert Disraeli) – An exploration of housing segregation in Philadelphia, with views of residents, real estate brokers and appraisers, bankers and builders. Narrated by famed ABC-TV reporter (and later anchorman) Howard K. Smith, the film was co-produced by the City of Philadelphia’s Commission on Human Relations and the American Jewish Committee Institute of Human Relations.
LEWIS MUMFORD ON THE CITY: THE CITY AND THE FUTURE (1963, Ian MacNeill) – This film, (which does NOT focus on Philadelphia), was the final chapter of a series hosted by the eminent American historian, sociologist, philosopher of technology, and literary critic Lewis Mumford. In this episode, Mumford considers the “loss of vitality” that he perceives in contemporary cities that have become crowded and resulted in suburban flight. The National Film Board of Canada spent five years producing this ambitious series, filming in eleven countries.