On the Bowery
National Film Registry • 1h 4m
Directed by Lionel Rogosin • Documentary • With Ray Salyer, Gorman Hendricks, Frank Matthews • 1956 • 65 minutes
On the Bowery chronicles three days in the drinking life of Ray Salyer, a part-time railroad worker adrift on New York’s skid row. When the film first opened in 1956, it exploded on the screen, jump-started the post-war American independent scene and shortly won an Oscar nomination. Restored by the Cineteca di Bologna, documentarian Lionel Rogosin's first theatrical film is simultaneously an incredible document of a bygone era and a vivid portrait of addiction that resonates today just as it did when it was made.
"Stunningly authentic." —Wesley Morris, Boston Globe
"This landmark documentary disturbs and compels as much today in a new 35mm restoration as it did when it opened in 1956 to both criticism and acclaim." —Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times
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