GIULIANI TIME?

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The man has not been mayor for five years, but the anger Rudolph Giuliani stirred up among many New Yorkers has not died. “People on the street [were saying], ‘I don’t want to see a movie about Giuliani—that man’s the devil, ‘” said event emcee Miles McAfee, describing his outreach for an advanced screening and discussion of Giuliani Time, a new movie about the man who was mayor from 1994 to 2002. More than 100 people showed up last Wednesday at the Crown Heights campus of Medgar Evers College to watch the film levy a barrage of criticism against the former mayor through footage of events from the 1990s (including police abuse of Abner Louima and Amadou Diallou, and clampdowns on welfare recipients), testimony from estranged allies like former Police Commissioner William Bratton, and insights from Giuliani-chronicler Wayne Barrett and others. In a subsequent discussion featuring one of the film’s producers, Williams Cole, and Ibrahim Abdil-Muid Ramey, a Nyack-based peace activist, audience members echoed the film’s portrayal of Giuliani as uncaring toward minorities and above the law. Giuliani is a “metaphor” for the “realignment of economic and political power in the hands of a particular group of people…not interested in civil rights,” said Ramey. The rebirth of Giuliani’s political career after 9/11 and rumors of a 2008 presidential bid appeared to have kindled a drive to action for many in the audience. Several spoke of bringing the film around the city and to events outside New York as Giuliani seeks a place on the national stage. (S. Sarkar) [05/15/06]