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Times Square

Screening on Film
Directed by Allan Moyle.
With Robin Johnson, Trini Alvarado, Tim Curry.
US, 1980, 35mm, color, 111 min.
Print source: Moving Image Archives at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts

Inspired by a girl's diary found in a secondhand couch, Times Square draws together several common themes in punk cinema: teenage runaways, mental illness, and of course, punk music. Shot in the dirty neon-lit streets of Times Square, the film authentically captures the spirit of an infamously sketchy space lost to Mayor Giuliani's "cleanup." Under pressure from his producer, Moyle had to sublimate his characters' overt lesbianism into suggestive subtext – witness the song "Your Daughter is One" – and adjust the music with hopes of producing a blockbuster soundtrack album. The opposing creative forces collide jarringly at times, yet the crazy combination also makes for an unusual and sweet celebration of defiant teenage girls.

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