Giving Chase

Noah Barker and Dora Budor’s Chase Manhattan (2022) gets a lot of mileage out of the pun. The title refers to JP Morgan Chase’s former Manhattan headquarters, Natalie de Blois’s 270 Park Avenue, which was demolished from 2019 to 2021. When reporters inquiring about the destination of the refuse collected from the seventy-story tower were stonewalled, Barker and Budor stealthily follow a dump truck leaving the construction site. The ensuing chase through the city and the Lincoln Tunnel ends in a New Jersey landfill. The short—a snippy photo slideshow set to droning instrumental music—is hardly the adrenaline-pumping stuff of the Fast franchise, yet endlessly more affecting.

Not to mention, elusive. The screening was part of a film series organized by the Baruch Miskin Gallery that drew inspiration from Samuel Stein’s concept of the real-estate state, which describes how planning functions of the state serve to shore up property investments through tax abatements and other incentives for luxury development, in his 2019 book Capital City. In remarks following the film, …

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