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Architecture in Film and Literature

Organizing Committee:


This monthly reading group meets on Sunday at the end of each month.  A book/movie pairing is chosen by the group at the begining of each month.  We begin each meeting with a screening of the film followed by a lively discussion.  You do not need an architectural background to participate. We welcome anyone who is interested! People are welcome to bring snacks and beverages.

This month's book/film:

Jana Leo - Rape New York

"Jana Leo’s Rape New York refractures and reconstructs the story of her rape and its aftermath; in re-presenting the constellation of events that lead to and from that attack, Leo represents life in all its random brutality and orchestrated dignity – in other words, the best that can be said about this book is that it is true, which is the only real measure of real art, and honest existence."

—Vanessa Place, author of The Guilt Project and Statement of Facts




Directed by Paul Verhoeven, 1987

When it arrived on the big screen in 1987, Paul Verhoeven's RoboCop was like a high-voltage jolt of electricity, blending satire, thrills, and abundant violence with such energized gusto that audiences couldn't help feeling stunned and amazed. The movie was a huge hit, and has since earned enduring cult status as one of the seminal science fiction films of the 1980s. Followed by two sequels, a TV series, and countless novels and comic books, this original RoboCop is still the best by far, largely due to the audacity and unbridled bloodlust of director Verhoeven. However, the reasons many enjoyed the film are also the reasons some will surely wish to avoid it. Critic Pauline Kael called the movie a dubious example of "gallows pulp," and there's no denying that its view of mankind is bleak, depraved, and graphically violent. In the Detroit of the near future, a policeman (Peter Weller) is brutally gunned down by drug-dealing thugs and left for dead, but he survives (half of him, at least) and is integrated with state-of-the-art technology to become a half-robotic cop of the future, designed to revolutionize law enforcement. As RoboCop holds tight to his last remaining shred of humanity, he relentlessly pursues the criminals who "killed" him. All the while, Verhoeven (from a script by Edward Neumeier and Michael Miner) injects this high-intensity tale with wickedly pointed humor and satire aimed at the men and media who cover a city out of control. --Jeff Shannon






Screening begins at 4pm.


Does this meet at 5pm? Thanks-

Great suggestions. Looking forward to the 10th.

I'm up for the suggestion and the 10th. thanks Dave

I think 10 April 2011 would be better for me. Looks like a great discussion!


An original and unexpected suggestion.
I'm interested. Will pick-up the book and start reading...and put Robocop on the Netflix que (unless anyone else owns a copy).
As for the date of the meeting. I could probably read the Leo book by Sunday the 27th, but I don't want to limit the rest of the group.

The next Sunday I could make it would be April 10.

Lets get the conversation going. I will schedule the class once we have some feedback.

((Please email me regarding the 'bike stuff' getting desperate:

Whoa, wait. This Sunday is already the last one! Does anyone have any ideas? Might it not be a bad idea to move this to the first Sunday of next month to be safe?

Todd, I tried emailing you last week about bike stuff, as well as a book idea, but it got returned as undeliverable.

At any rate, the book idea was 'Rape New York' by Jana Leo. I picked it up last week and I think it might be able to foster some interesting discussion.

Oddly enough, the film that naturally pairs with this is Robocop. This might sound like a joke, but if you read the book it's a perfect pairing.



Lefebvre Text for Feb 27:

Don't panic...its manageable...See you Sunday

Dear Reading Group,

Radical shift for Sunday. New text and film selections. See below:

Film: The Architects, Peter Kahane 1990

Text: Henri Lefebvre - International Competition For The New Belgrade Urban Structure Improvement.

Will post text tomorrow. This is a big last minute change, but what the hell its only architecture, philosophy and cinema....



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