Sara Driver, 2018, 78 min
Using unique archive footage, interviews with insiders and an exceptional soundtrack that tells a story all its own, Boom for Real outlines how the effervescent scene in 1970s and 1980s New York contributed to the formation of young, enigmatic artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. The insiders include big names such as filmmaker Jim Jarmusch, Hip Hop impresario Fab 5 Freddy, and graffiti artist Lee Quiñones. They relate how Basquiat built a bridge between the era of Andy Warhol and art forms such as graffiti, hip hop, rap, breakdance and punk rock that were emerging in run-down, drug-infested New York—in particular in the artistic enclave around SoHo. During this period, Basquiat roamed the city like a homeless teenager and was evicted from buildings repeatedly, but he demonstrated an unerring ability to capture the spirit of the times. As one participant in the film aptly puts it, "Basquiat understood the nature of public space." This rich collage of image, text and music reveals how the young, energetic Basquiat absorbed everything around him and endowed that public space with his very unique signature.
Q&A with director Sara Driver, and Charlie Ahearn, director of Wild Style.