The Cruise (1998 film)

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The Cruise
The Cruise - Timothy Speed Levitch 1998.jpg
Cover art for the 2006 DVD release, which identifies Bennet as the director of Capote.
Directed by Bennett Miller
Produced by Bennett Miller
Starring Timothy "Speed" Levitch
Music by Marty Beller
Cinematography Bennett Miller
Edited by Michael Levine
Release dates
  • September 12, 1998 (1998-09-12) (Toronto Film Festival)
  • October 14, 1998 (1998-10-14) (United States)
Running time 76 minutes
Country United States
Language English

The Cruise is a documentary released in 1998. It was the debut film of Bennett Miller, who became prominent after directing Capote (2005). The film records the worldview and personality of Timothy "Speed" Levitch, who was then a guide for bus tours of New York City. Levitch had become popular for his unconventional narrative about the city that he delivered at a frenetic pace.

At the time of the film's release, Stephen Holden wrote, "Filmed in high-contrast black and white that makes the city look harshly magnificent, at once irresistible and forbidding, The Cruise could be described as a whirlwind tour both of New York and of Levitch's feverish mind."[1] Following the film's release to DVD in 2006, Brett Cullum wrote, "Although we do get to see some familiar sites, including winsome glimpses of the World Trade Center towers, the camera hardly ever leaves the face of our tour guide. This is all one extended character study, and is not concerned with narrative or sight seeing. No, this is a dadaist manifesto delivered off the pavement leading to the Brooklyn bridge. It runs like an hour of poetic jazz — verbal scats and flourishes aplenty."[2]

The production of the film has also drawn critical commentary. James Berardinelli wrote, "'The Cruise' is a typical example of low-budget documentary film making. It's in grainy black-and-white (a blowup from the video it was shot on) with a flat audio. Oddly, however, this approach gives Levitch's New York a timeless quality. The Gershwin song "But Not for Me" plays as the camera captures the modern skyline, creating a sense of the past and present blurring together. Miller's real work came in the editing room, where dozens of hours of footage had to be trimmed and spliced to arrive at the final product."[3]

The Cruise was nominated for a number of filmmaking awards. These included Best Documentary from the Online Film Critics Society and the Satellite Awards. Michael Levine, the film's editor, was nominated for the Best Edited Documentary Film award ("Eddie") of the American Cinema Editors.[4]

The Cruise was released to DVD in 2006.[5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Holden, Stephen (October 23, 1998). "'The Cruise': Strong Opinions of a Dizzy Tour Guide". The New York Times. 
  2. ^ Cullum, Brett (March 13, 2006). "The Cruise". DVD Verdict. 
  3. ^ Berardinelli, James (1998). "The Cruise". ReelViews. 
  4. ^ "'The Cruise' (1998) - Awards". Internet Movie Database. 
  5. ^ The Cruise (DVD). Lions Gate Home Entertainment. 2006. OCLC 64552509. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Levitch, Speed (November 27, 1998). "Speed Levitch Explains It All".  Quotes of Levitch from the film.
  • Savlov, Mark (November 27, 1998). "Cruise Central". The Austin Chronicle.  Interview with Bennett Miller and Timothy "Speed" Levitch.

External links[edit]